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Monique Starks » About Me

About Me

Hi and thanks for checking out my page! I am an Adult Education Teacher who works at St. John's Program for Real Change, a residential program for women breaking the cycle of homelessness. I help some of the most resilient women work towards getting their high school diplomas. I have been employed as an educator since 2006 though I have regularly tutored friends and classmates during high school and college. I really love helping people, especially in small groups and one-on-one. I graduated with a Bachelor's in Biology at California Polytechnic State University, San Luis Obispo then went on to obtain an M.A. in Science Education in a year abroad at the beautiful University of York, England. At Highlands, most students know that I enjoy teaching math, but really my deeper passion is exploring nature. I love hiking and bird-watching and just sitting out in the forest, at the beach, or anywhere near water or in wide-open spaces.
I am credentialed as an Educational Specialist from Sac State and worked with students with special needs of all ages (K-12) for 10 years both as a Paraprofessional and a Resource Specialist. I took a short hiatus after I married my husband in 2011 and immediately became a mother to 3 teen/pre-teen boys that my husband foster-adopted. While I was homeschooling our youngest son I took on a part-time job as a Volunteer Coordinator with World Relief, a non-profit refugee resettlement organization. My boys are all grown up now (I welcomed my first granddaughter in December 2019!) and I've returned to teaching full-time. Working at Highlands has been one of the most rewarding experiences; I think our staff and students are incredible! Our Highlands' motto resonates with me for truly it is never too late to make new choices that can lead us to into a life that is bigger than ourselves, that is even bigger than we dare imagine.