Alaska Tech Learners student Beth Swaby

by Vicki Heissier  |   

Beth Swaby is a teacher enrolled in the Alaska Tech Learners program, an online program designed to teach high-school teachers coursework within the field of e-commerce. This program first provides instruction to high school teachers, who then facilitate dual-enrollment courses for students at their school through a shared teaching model (local instruction combined with the grading of assignments and support by PWSC computing faculty.)

PWSC: How did you hear about the program?  

Beth: I heard about the Alaska Tech Learners program through my administrator at KPBSD.  He was hoping to get some teachers interested in the courses. 

PWSC: You mention your school district. Tell us a little about your background. How long have you been teaching her in Alaska? 

Beth: I grew up in North Dakota and attended the University of Minnesota Duluth for my bachelor's.  Since then, I have been teaching in Alaska for 13 years. I spent 2 years teaching with Nome Public Schools before moving to the Kenai Peninsula.  My mathematics background and Master’s in Educational Technology and Online Teaching have given me a firm ground for moving into the computers and technology realm of education. This is my first, hopefully of many, years teaching online.

PWSC: What are you learning about? 

Beth: This semester I jumped right in and I am learning commercial webpage development and design.  We use HTML5 and CSS3 to write webpages.

PWSC: What do you like about the class(es)?             

Beth: I like that they are asynchronous so I can work on the class on my time.  This allows a lot more flexibility and actually makes it possible for me to take courses.

PWSC: Do you feel supported by PWSC staff with any questions you may have?

Beth: Yes, Dr. Steve Johnson has been amazing.

PWSC:  Any struggles? 

Beth: As an adult learner, I struggle with managing to carve enough time out of my life, both personal and professional, to complete the required coursework.

PWSC: Overall, what do you hope to gain from participating in these classes? 

Beth: I hope to gain a better understanding of HTML5 and CSS3 so that I can, in turn, teach these important, useful skills to my students.