After two years in the english department, Professor Gail Weinhold will be teaching Education classes in place of Dr. Margo Lloyd.
Next semester, Professor Gail Weinhold will be moving from the English department to the School of Education where she will help teach classes previously taught by the late Dr. Margo Lloyd. Professor Weinhold was hired two years ago as a full-time English professor, and she quickly gained a lot of respect and love from both English majors and non-English majors who took her classes.
This interview has been edited for brevity.
Q: Why did you move to the School of Education?
A: I had hoped to teach a class or do some supervision at some point for the School of Education because of how much I love working with teachers. However, when the need arose to have a new faculty member, I really had to pray. I asked God to take away the desire if the move was not His plan. Over and over, He brought people into my path that inspired me to work with teachers even more. Teaching has been a blessing to me in more ways than I can explain, and I believe I can pay the blessing forward exponentially by equipping the next generation of teachers.
Q: What do you bring to the School of Education?
A: First and foremost, I bring a passion for the ministry. Teaching is a full-time mission field. Students, especially at the secondary level, are forming their identities and searching for truth. They no longer want to believe something simply because is it what their parents taught them. Literature and stories provide such powerful tools for discussion, as well as opportunities to go beyond the text and into the message. God uses Christian teachers to reach those students at critical stages in their personal and spiritual growth. The impact a teacher can have is not only in the lives of his or her students, but in the lives those students touch as well.
Professionally speaking, I taught English and gifted education courses to students in every grade from 7-12 for 14 years. Working in public education, I know the challenges Christian teachers face, and I also know the opportunities they will have. I have a MA from the University of St. Thomas in Curriculum and Instruction and an additional graduate certificate in gifted education. I am a fully licensed teacher in grades 7-12 by the State of Minnesota Department of Education. I have taught in the Masters in Education program for St. Catherine University and evaluated teacher portfolios (known as the TPA) for Pearson. I have been honored by several awards and nominations in my field over the years including Minnesota Teacher of the Year and the Claes Nobel Educators Award.
Q: You have been awarded a plethora of teaching awards that would allow you to teach anywhere, so how did you end up at North Central?
A: Being a part of Emmanuel Christian Center for years, I had heard about North Central University, but I was very happy teaching in public education. I still feel it is critical to have Christian educators in public schools. However, I was contacted by one of my former teaching colleagues to teach a course in st. kates masters program. Through that class and the many education conferences I had spoke at over the years, I found it so incredibly rewarding to work with teachers. I firmly believe that if God gifts you with abilities and you learn things along the way that will make others more effective, you have a duty to share what you’ve learned. I decided to look at local universities, first out of curiosity, to see if they had any open positions. Funny enough, I was actually looking to become an education professor! However, God’s timing is perfect and when I saw that a full-time English position was open here at NCU, I immediately reached out to Dr. Crabtree, the chair of the English department. Then God started to open doors and make his plan clear.
Q: What are you most excited about in the School of Education?
A: Everything! I am really excited to get back into the local schools and work with students during their clinicals and student teaching assignments. I’m excited to see my particular knowledge, passions and background meet the needs and exceed the hopes of students in the secondary education major. I am looking forward to what God has in store for the School of Education. Students should be excited about what is coming!
I’m looking forward to strengthening the connection between the English Department and the secondary education communication arts majors. One of the ways I can keep that connection strong is by teaching a class in the English department when possible. This fall, I will still teach the Shakespeare course, which is my baby. Shakespeare is one of my all-time favorite classes, and I am very, very excited to have the opportunity to teach it again this fall. Lady Weinhold has not left the building! I come anon!
Also, I don’t want to lose my connection with the larger NCU community. Although most of my classes will be education specific, I hope students will continue to look for me. When I teach a course that might meet one of the general education or English requirements, I want to see them full of students from a wide variety of majors. I have come to love my students in all different majors, and I hope they will come find me even if it is just for a chat once I move over the Miller Hall!