Alumni Spotlight: Erin Pack-Jordan

How did UNT’s College of Education prepare you for your career?
UNT prepared me quite well for my career in and out of the classroom. As a first-generation college student, I was anxious about the future and how to proceed with my education. The wonderful professors and advisors in both the College of Education (and the College of Arts and Sciences, where I earned my bachelor’s degree) guided me. In my current job, I write, research and edit state history textbooks. In this capacity, I make materials both accurate and appealing for teachers and students. Being a teacher helped me be successful in this job. Currently, I’m working on curriculum and textbook materials for middle school Washington and Georgia state histories.

What was the most valuable thing you learned while you were here?
What I enjoyed the most about the education program at UNT was the practical aspects. It really prepared me for how classrooms function. I felt like I was “ahead of the curve” as far as preparation for teaching.

What made you choose UNT?
As I mentioned before, I was a first-generation college student from a small town. My brother went to and graduated from UNT in 2005, the year I graduated high school. Although I got into other colleges, UNT felt both comfortable yet exciting. It was also affordable. I’m so glad I did because it opened up so many doors for me.

When did you know you wanted to teach?
In college, I was heavily involved with judging high school speech and debate competitions. I began subbing for several of those coaches and enjoyed my experiences with that. I also worked as a supplemental instructor for the UNT Learning Center. It just seemed like a natural fit. I taught high school social studies and English classes, and coached speech and debate until the opportunity to work for a textbook company appeared.

Anything else you’d like to add?
An education degree does not limit you to the classroom! Education is all around us, so if you have an opportunity outside of teaching don’t be afraid to take it! When the opportunity for my current job presented itself, I immediately took it even though I had originally planned to continue teaching.

 

Erin Pack-Jordan (’08, ’11 M.Ed.) is currently employed as associate editor for history education at Gibbs Smith Publishing.