January 23. 2018 3:50PM

Jennifer MacDonald • 39 • New Hampton

What is the best career advice you ever received?

There is no substitute for hard work. As a new teacher, you are going to work long hours. You are going to get to school when it is just you and the janitor and your car will be the last one in the parking lot at night.

Why did you choose your profession?

I had a wonderful and supportive first grade teacher who encouraged me throughout my entire childhood to pursue a career in education. I always enjoyed helping others and teaching has always allowed me to do that.

What motivates you to give back to your community?

I so enjoy watching our community grow. Families are seeking high quality education opportunities for their children and our work at Heart Centered Multi-Age provides a much needed service to our community’s children. We must raise children prepared to be our next leaders. Our Place Based Education roots our children with a strong foundation of who they are and where they come from. These children will be the next leaders in our community.

What advice would you give your 22-year-old self?

People may judge and doubt your out-of-the-box ideas. Keep dreaming — it will pay off!

What would you like to be doing when you’re 40?

For me, 40 is right around the corner! I have been incredibly blessed to work with a staff of hardworking dreamers that have helped me grow and advance our educational offerings. I would love to see our programs become more available to all socioeconomic groups, where all children can have access to high quality, Place and Nature Based Education.

What was your last major achievement?

Creating and implementing Nature Preschool at Heart Centered Multi-Age. Providing Nature and Place Based Education to children in the Newfound Area.

Volunteer activities: Kelley Park Playground Committee.