Loyola University Chicago

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Alum returns to teach at Loyola

Alum returns to teach at Loyola

“I knew I wanted to be a teacher at a very young age,” says Celia Arresola, EdD. “Everyone in my family knew it as well. I love the challenges and the successes that result from everyday learning.”

Celia Arresola, EdD, is a clinical assistant professor in the School of Education’s Administration and Supervision program. Arresola, who received her Doctor of Education degree from Loyola in 2011, brings several years of teaching and administrative experience back to the University.

She’s worked as a special education teacher, served as a district-level administrator, and been a consultant for the Illinois State Board of Education. Here, she talks about what drew her to education, how her fourth-grade teacher inspired her, and why it’s so important to have integrity in the classroom.

Where is your hometown/where did you grow up? 

I was born in Texas but moved between Illinois and Texas due to my parents being migrant/seasonal workers. We finally settled in the suburbs northwest of Chicago.

Talk a little about your research and areas of expertise.

My areas of expertise are educational leadership, educational law, and special education.

What drew you to your field?

I knew I wanted to be a teacher at a very young age. Everyone in my family knew it as well. I love the challenges and the successes that result from everyday learning. 

Is there someone who inspired you to become a teacher?

I had already decided to become a teacher when my decision was solidified by my fourth-grade teacher, Sylvia Saylor. She was young and cool and made learning fun. She was creative and used a variety of methods to gain and maintain our attention and participation.  She treated every student the same. So if she had a favorite, we never knew about it. I modeled much of what I did as a teacher after some of the approaches that I recalled from my experiences in her classroom. 

How did you get involved in special education?

I chose special education because I had a cousin with special needs that I tutored on weekends. It just seemed like a natural transition. The thing is that I never had the opportunity to teach students with cognitive issues like my cousin. For whatever reason, I became a teacher of students with significant behavior and social/emotional issues. There was never a dull day in my classroom!
 
What do you hope your students will gain from your courses?

I hope that students realize that having integrity and being humanistic is an important part of being a leader and an educator.

ABOUT THE PROFESSOR
Name: Celia Arresola
Title: Clinical assistant professor, Administration and Supervision program
Courses taught: Issues in School Law (ELPS 461); Law, Policy, and Community for Principals (ELPS 484); Administration of Special Education (ELPS 472); Human Resource Administration for the School District Leader (ELPS 475); School Supervision for Principals (ELPS 482)