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Andrew De Leonardis
Hometown: Arroyo Grande, CA
Program of study: Magis Catholic Teacher Corps
Why did you choose Creighton? I chose Creighton mainly because of the Magis program here. I'm able to serve through teaching in an inner city Catholic school in Omaha. I have wanted to get into education since graduating undergrad but did not have an education degree. Magis allowed me that ability to get the education I needed, the support to succeed, and the spiritual formation that has strengthened me through the perilous road of teaching. I feel truly blessed to be here and thank you Creighton for welcoming this crazy kid from the West Coast!
What made you decide to pursue education in this program? The emphasis on service to those who do not have the same opportunities as others. The program is called 'Magis' because it seeks the more out of life and the people I've met on this program as well as our directors clearly have their hearts in the right place as well are all striving to find God in all things.
What are your interests outside of graduate school? I love to watch Creighton basketball, GO JAYS!!! I love(d) to surf...those waves in the Missouri aren't as intense as California. I also just ran my first half marathon in Papillion...it was awesome!
What experiences at Creighton have best prepared you for life after Creighton? Being thrown into a classroom with almost zero teaching experience has forced me to be a fast learner and use my gifts and talents to the fullest potential. Life can always get more difficult, but I feel Creighton has given me many tools to be able to succeed in any high stress environment.
What is your most memorable experience at Creighton? When I was allowed to go in the Golden Elevator to the top of the Jesuit residence...that was a treat. But seriously, I came from an undergraduate experience of 20,000 students. When I came to Creighton I was amazed at the small class sizes and intimate, personal attention professors gave. This has been a very formative educational experience where I really feel that I'm not just getting a grade, but my person is being shaped as well by the faculty here.
What is one thing that you have accomplished that makes you proud? Getting through my first year of teaching...goodness...there were times... Creighton helped a lot with that so I have to give shouts out to Carrie and Colleen our directors, and Professors Bev Johnson, Diane Flynn, Tim Dickel, Tim Cook and Mike Mansour. These people are my heroes/heroines.
What have you most enjoyed about your experience at Creighton? Seeing Doug McDermott walk around campus...you da man, Doug!!! Also the fact that the Jesuit Charisms aren't just something that is talked about on one day, but something that is infused into teaching as well as expected to be infused into my own teaching. What an awesome institution that holds that which is most important, God's love, above all else.
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