By Desiree Williams
Maddie Stahl, 24, is a 2013 graduate of Fishers High School. She graduated from Indiana University with a degree in elementary education and is currently working her “dream job” at Cumberland Road Elementary.
Q: Who has been your most influential teacher?
A: My most influential teacher’s name is Mrs. O’Neill. She was a first-grade teacher at my school, but she wasn’t actually my teacher. She always made me feel special, though. I saw her a lot as I grew up, so when I became a Cadet Teacher, I reached out and asked if I could work in her classroom. She welcomed me in, helped me grow and encouraged me to pursue my dream of becoming a teacher.
Q: What were you involved in during high school?
A: I was pretty involved during high school, but most of my time went towards Campus Life and show choir. I loved Campus Life so much that I started volunteering with them after I graduated and am now an adult leader. Show choir really helped me gain confidence in myself and gave me some of my favorite memories and people.
Q: What do you miss about high school?
A: I really miss the simplicity of high school. All of my friends lived close by, and we fell into this weekly routine of watching movies, eating Taco Bell and taking late night drives on country roads and singing our favorite songs. It was just so simple.
Q: Can you tell me about your collegiate experiences?
A: During my time at IU, I was chosen to be a 500 Festival Princess and committed a lot of my time to volunteering and serving at 500 Festival events. I was also part of the Global Gateways program, which allowed me to complete half of my student teaching in a village in England. I am grateful to Indiana University for preparing me for my career and giving me the greatest memories along the way.
Q: Why did you choose elementary education?
A: I have dreamed of being an elementary teacher since I was in elementary school. I care so much about people, but my strength is definitely found in my love and understanding of children. I valued my elementary experience because I felt loved, special and recognized. Now I am going to spend my life trying to make my students feel the same way.
Q: What are you up to now?
A: I am a kindergarten teacher at Cumberland Road Elementary. I have 18 wonderful students that I am told I talk about nonstop. My coworkers are incredible and have supported me constantly. Outside of work, I spend most of my time crafting, spending time with family and friends, obsessing over my nephew, Finnley, and loving Taylor Swift.
Q: Do you have any advice for younger students?
A: Be kind, be yourself and be ready to work hard for the things that matter to you.
Q: Is there anything else you’d like the community to know about you?
A: I loved growing up in Fishers and appreciate all the opportunities I had here. As a teacher, I hope that I will be able to make my students feel the same way.