Not all classrooms have four walls

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Not all classrooms have four walls

Published on January 18 2013

When we’re young we all know what we want to be when we grow up, or at the very least we think we do.

Thinking back to the old “what do you want to be when you grow up” exercise from elementary school, the predictible professions always seemed to arise; fire fighters, lawyers, doctors, teachers, etc.

But as we mature and begin to experience life’s new stages, our career aspirations often change - sometimes slightly and sometimes drastically - but regardless the degree of which they take on new shape, they rarely mirror what we once thought to be a foregone conclusion when we were young.

For Devin Kellaway, who will graduate this June with a Bachelor of Education degree, he always knew his path would lead him inside a classroom, but what that classroom would look like, well that took time and experience to become the clear picture it is today.

With support from Fort Erie Secondary School Kellaway received a scholarship to attend Brock University where he was accepted to the BA/BEd program to combine music with education in the pursuit of becoming a teacher, a path he believe he was destined to follow.

“I always knew that helping kids realize their potential was in my future,” says Kellaway. “I always thought teaching was the best way to get there – back then I never imagined any other options for myself.”

But it didn’t take long for Kellaway to realize that there were other options available to fulfill his calling.

After completing his first year of university, Kellaway, like many students, sought summer employment and was fortunate to have found it in the form of Brock’s Youth University.

“I was a summer instructor, mostly leading education-based programs which allowed kids to experience science and technology on campus,” he says of his first year with Youth University. “Since then, I have continued to work with the organization during the spring, summer and school year and have had the opportunity to work directly with youth, develop hands-on curriculum, and become involved in program coordination and administration.”

As Kellaway’s schooling progressed, so too did his career aspirations, shifting him from simply teaching in a classroom to education administration, with the idea of becoming a principal the obvious next step.

Crediting his experience with Youth University as a major contributor in ultimately helping reshape his original dream of being a teacher, Kellaway notes that his aspirations of working with children haven’t changed, however, his path has.

“I always thought that being a teacher or principal were my only options,” admits Kellaway. “I learned about my potential careers by observing the adults around me; kids and recent Brock graduates alike should know that there is a whole world of possibilities for educators out there just waiting to be discovered or even invented.”

For many, having their career path altered or detoured can prove to be an arduous and potentially stressful life revelation, but for Kellaway, he wouldn’t have it any other way.

Upon graduation Kellaway will be employed as Youth University’s full-time Enrichment Program Manager, a role that will entail the continued delivering of new and existing learning and development programs for youth, including tutoring, leadership and enrichment camps.

“I still want every child to be successful, to challenge themselves and to feel a sense of belonging,” he says. “My ‘classroom’ has become Brock’s campus and I hope I can help our participants’ experience the joy of discovery and develop aspirations for lifelong learning through Youth University’s innovative cooperative and experiential learning programs.”

devin kellaway
Following his path

Devin Kellaway found his path and and has set course for his career