Watson Chronicle


Support for Educators in the Field

25 Teachers Participate in BT Conference at WCE

Friday, December 02, 2022

On November 4, the Watson College was pleased to welcome 25 beginning teachers for the first of three annual BT Conference Days. The theme of the event was “Beginning Brave.”

Leah Carper delivered a keynote address titled, Things I wish I Knew When I Was a Beginning Teacher. Carper is an English teacher at Northern Guilford High School in Guilford County and North Carolina’s 2022 Teacher of the Year.

Other presentations covered a range of topics including going global, engaging diverse learners and maximizing literacy across content areas. Participants also enjoyed a ‘Mindful Moment’ with Dr. Jacquelyn Lee, Director, UNCW Center for Teaching Excellence and a session called “Teacher Time,” where they had 30 minutes to walk, read, write or explore.

Presenters were Lori Best, Instructional Coach, NC New Teacher Support Program; Amber Colon, WCE Educational Technology Specialist; Brittany O’Neil and Melissa Raymer, UNCW Randall Library; Kathaleen Trost, Columbus County Schools; Mikailah Wallace, WCE TESOL Graduate Student; and Dr. Martin Wasserberg, Assistant Chair of WCE’s Department of Early Childhood, Elementary, Middle, Literacy and Special Education.

Abbey Nobles '14 gave a closing presentation titled Developing a Sense of Identity. Nobles is an English teacher at New Hanover High School, and North Carolina’s Southeast Regional Teacher of the Year. 

“Our beginning teachers appreciated the wide range of sessions covering useful classroom strategies as well as reminders that teaching is challenging work and it’s important to remember take some time for themselves,” said Jenn Hatch Knight, WCE’s Assistant PDS Director. “All of our presenters were great, and Abbey Nobles’ session about developing a sense of identity was a wonderful way to end our day. One teacher commented, ‘It was a wakeup call of my why.’”

Beginning Teacher Conference Days are offered through WCE’s First Years of Teaching Support Program. Jenn Hatch Knight coordinates the FYTS program.