Friday, February 27, 2015

A Change of Plans

Why fit in when you were born to stand out?
-Dr. Seuss

This week, I have had the valuable, and slightly less pleasant, experience of rejection. My first job interview was this past week and it did not goes as planned. Well, that is to say it didn't go as I had planned it would go...

I walked into my interview with an ease about myself. I was confident, collected, and ready to roll. I had all 90 pages of my portfolio, each in its proper place between two plastic page protectors, none without their corresponding label. In the pocket of my portfolio was a flash drive, complete with a digital copy of my work and 2 video clips as evidence of my teaching abilities. How could they say no? How?

Well, it was easier for them then I thought. I went through the interview, answering question after question, posing thoughts and ideas, asking questions right back. I was engaged, present in the experience, enthusiastic about the opportunity. I saw myself there. I could go there.... 

But I don't go there, and I won't go there....

I didn't get the call I expected.  A friend of mine received the call.  It wasn't that I couldn't believe that she got the job over me, it was that I couldn't believe I wasn't good enough.  I did everything I was supposed to.  I had the portfolio, I followed up with a thank you, I wore my suit, I researched the community.  But I wasn't good enough...

Those of you who know me know that I can be a perfectionist at times (but only a little, I promise.....).  I was devastated that I did not get the first job I interviewed for.  How could this be?  But having thought about this for a few days now, I realized that it really isn't that hard to understand at all.

Its not that the other candidates were better than me, its that I'm different.  Its not that I don't belong there, its that I fit better at a different place.  Its not that I can't teach well, its that I teach differently.  What I am discovering this week is that this whole student teaching thing isn't about being better or worse, being stronger or weaker, being near or far, its about being different.  Each school is different and each candidate is different, but somewhere there is a match.  The goal is not to be better than the others, the goal is to find the match that is different in the same way as you are.

And so, throughout this process of interviewing for the first time and not receiving that call, I have learned a few things.  First of which is to always pack your own snow plow when driving north, but that's for another story.  I've learned that I am different.  I am different than my 17 classmates and that I am different than the other Ag Teachers.  But somewhere there is a place that is different too, in all the right ways.

So to the candidate who took the job, I know you will do great things there and that your students will be blessed with a teacher as passionate as you are.  And to the school that is different in the same ways as I am, I don't know who you are yet, but I'm coming... and I'll see you in the 2015-16 school year.


  1. I really enjoyed reading this Janae! I am excited for you to find your fit because when you do it will be explosive!!

  2. Excellent reflection. The journey is long and arduous with bumps in the road, but ah, the destination..the destination is what the journey prepares us for and will be beautiful. I have no doubt you will love your destination!

    Keep on Keeping on Champ!