The not so little tale.

Once upon a time I wrote a really long account of my quest for a teaching job.  What follows is the not so little tale.
First, you must know that I love sushi.  I recognize that not everyone loves sushi.  So for you sushi-despisers out there to appreciate this post you must first picture the food you just crave above all else.  That's sushi for me but that might be fried chicken for you.  From here on out, when you hear "sushi" insert your own delectable, coma-inducing food of choice: "fried chicken."

Now jump back to March.  The end of my student teaching was in sight and the big push for jobs was beginning.  In the midst of preparing resumes, letters of rec, applications, (etc. etc.), Aaron and I struck a deal: When I get a job we will go to sushi to celebrate.  Not that I didn't already want a teaching job, but this made me want a teaching job even more and want it immediately.

So the job hunt went and went and went.

I applied to twenty-one teaching positions, dropped resumes off with seven schools and networked like crazy.  March turned into April and I started interviewing with schools.  Oh how I just wanted a job by the time I graduated!  I didn't want to be that statistic that flashes all around the Internet, you know the one that says "70% of college students are graduating without a job."

There was a little wrench in the whole job application process for me though.

I didn't want to accept just any teaching job. I wanted to work at Timpview High School.  I wanted to work with the same teachers I had come to trust and admire at Timpview.   I wanted to continue working on the topics, assignments, activities, projects and assessments that I had begun in those three months of sweat and guts during my student teaching.  I wanted to work at Timpview.

What was the wrench then, you wonder?

The wrench: Timpview probably wouldn't post their teaching position until late April/early May.

The wrench: Statistics (darn statistics) show that if you get offered a Social Studies teaching job, you should probably take it because it will most likely be your only one.

The wrench: If I waited around till late April/early May and then didn't get the Timpview job there was a good chance I might not get another teaching job.

The wrench: If you are offered a teaching job at a school, they will most likely ask you to respond within 24 hours to let them know if you accept the position.

Thus, the wrench: I needed to interview everywhere and throw my heart into it in the event that I didn't get that Timpview job.

And the wrench: I would potentially be offered a job position at a school and need to make the huge decision of accepting/rejecting that job within 24 hours...while still having a far away hope of getting a job at Timpview way at the end of the month (Oh how I hated that 24 hour period!).
So I did my best to interview and throw myself into wanting to work for a middle school, a high school, an AP US History class, a financial literacy class, a Utah Studies class (oh please no!), a world civilizations class and so on.

I would interview and on my way home from the interview that bittersweet call would come: "We were so impressed.  We would like to extend you a job position to work at our school.  Are you prepared to accept the offer now?"  

Then my himming and hawwing would start, "Can I have a little more time to think about it?"  (Translation: can I have until the end of April/beginning of May so I can just know if I could have that blessed Timpview job).  

Then their himming and hawwing would start, "Well, um, we really need to know as soon as possible. What if you let me know in the next 24 hours?"


"Okay, thank you for the extra time.  I'm honored, but just need a little more time to consider.  I will let you know in 24 hours."

Oh how I wished for a crystal ball, that ball that would tell me what to do.

The crystal ball doesn't exist people, but the Spirit does and I learned that intimately over the past months.

So Aaron and I prayed hard.  We fasted, we gave talks on receiving personal revelation (although I needed to be hearing that talk!), and we researched.  But that little nudging feeling kept coming: Just wait patiently.

So despite all the wrenches, the little nudges always won over.

I would call the school that I interviewed with, and as much as I could I would try to keep the door open with them while still turning down the job offer.
This went on for the entire month of April.

April 20th came, the day of graduation, and I became that statistic, you know the one that says "70% of college students are graduating without a job."

And in the midst of the crazy April month, I realized that mine and Aaron's pack for sushi could only be fulfilled by accepting a job offer, not merely receiving a job offer.  That darn fine print.

So the month of April came and went with no sushi fulfillment.  Oh it was a dark month.

Then a little ray of hope entered.  I logged on to the job postings website and there I saw it: Timpview had posted a Social Studies teaching position for Fall 2012.  My fingers couldn't fly fast enough.  I whipped through that application/cover letter like nobody's business.  It was done. Signed, sealed, delivered.

The phone call came though, and I my interview was set for May 2nd.

Thoughts of sushi flooded my mind and I thought that I could almost taste it.

My nerves were at an all time high during the interview.

After an hour and a half, 2 part interview (with a writing assignment!), I walked my exhausted self out to the car, exhaled and called Aaron.  I, in my very womanly ways, told Aaron every little detail, down to the Vice Principal's facial expressions.  I listed all the reasons that they should've loved me and all the reasons why they could've hated me.

I decided to push the interview out of my mind though and try to continue on with the day.  Aaron and I would be seating on the couch talking about nonsense and then I would kind of seize up, grab his arm and exclaim, "Ah I just want to know!"
Two days later, while I was driving home from my West Jordan sub job, I saw the Timpview principal's number flash in big, bold print across my iPhone screen.  This was it.  I took a deep breath, answered the phone and braced myself a little.

Now, I was driving at the time, which is important to keep in mind.  I am never at my full phone chatting capabilities while driving (especially in crazy Utah construction).  Multi-tasking is not my strong suit.  Hopefully that skill kicks in one day with those other motherly, domestic skills I'm praying for.

Anyways, I digress.

The principal did the small chat niceties for a minute or so (How am I doing? How do you think I'm doing...I haven't been able to move for the past 48 hours).  

And then those glorious words transpired: "Well, Caroline, we were very impressed with you during your student teaching and throughout the interview process.  We would like to extend you a full time job offer."

Then in a very mature, professional-like way, I kind of shrieked.

You know that kind-of-shriek that you hear reverberate through your mind as you melt a little, praying that you really didn't just make that noise.  But the shriek came.  (Remember, I can't be held accountable...my mind was focused on navigating the horrendous orange cones of construction).  The shameful shriek was thankfully followed by an understanding chuckle from the principal.

So, I formally accepted the position.  After going through some of the technicalities, we ended the call.

And the delighted shriek came again.  This time there wasn't any worried reverberations bouncing around in my head.  Just pure bliss and happiness.

I proceeded to call Aaron and do a little over-the-phone happy dance. If waiting had been difficult for me, then I can't imagine what he went through waiting for me waiting all the time.  He really is the best.

Oh and that sushi dinner?

It was aaaa-mazing.

Sushi has never tasted so sweet.

So here's a new job at Timpview--teaching Geography and World Civ, enlightening young minds, staying up to shameful hours planning lessons, and driving only 5 minutes to work every day (hallelujah).


  1. CONGRATS Mrs. McKell! I loved every bit of this story, thanks for sharing! And what a wonderful Timpview teacher you will be :) I'm so happy for you!

  2. Congratulations Caroline! This is wonderful news for you, and I'm sure you will be the best teacher they've ever had. Good luck!

  3. yay!! a lot of kids in my ward go to timpview - i'll have them look for you!!