Return to Headlines

Bringing An Educational Vision to Life

Deese excited about opportunities afforded to JCSS students 

When Ansley Deese saw the vision of Empower College and Career, she knew from the very beginning she had to be a part of bringing the vision to life. She has predominantly taught high school seniors for 10 years.

Knowing she held the ability to have an impact on students on a deeper level brought her a sense of purpose. The opportunity to work at Empower renewed her passion for setting up students for life-long college and career success.

“When this position came open, I saw the vision of merging career, college, and all of the workforces in one building. Even the higher ed, dual enrollment. I loved that it was all under one building, because that is essentially what the goal is for a student,”said Deese.

Immersing herself with the skills and training from many different programs is how she ensures her curriculum is comprehensible for students. National Council of Teachers of English (NCTE) and a Multi-Tiered Support System (MTSS training) have been very useful in her teaching career. 

Although she takes on the proper training, she still uses her personal passion to influence the curriculum and the teaching students receive.

Deese implements her personality and great love of travel into the classroom in various ways to make it a different learning environment students are not used to. 

“I love traveling, I try not to go to the same place twice, I’ve been overseas, up north to Seattle, California. I’m  trying to hit all of the great spots at least once in my lifetime,”said Deese.

“I actually like to bring those experiences back to my students because that is what they are going to face when they grow up, when they go to a new place and have a new experience and that's one way, immersion. Immerse yourself in the culture, the moment and the experience.”

In her ten years of education she feels like everything has prepared her for this step in her career. Throughout her time as a high school teacher, she’d ask the students what their future holds. The uncertainty from those conversations are what compelled her to cease the opportunity at Empower. 

She began working immediately to mold and shape the future of young men and women in the Jackson County School System. Deese has been on staff since the opening of Empower and plans to see it through.

Empower is a place where a person with a gift like hers can thrive and greatly impact and improve the community. Even in a year and a half, the vision of new education has been brought to the forefront of her priorities.

“Seeing it enacted every single day with that passion and that vision really solidified it over the years. You could see it in real time because it became a thing, a great opportunity for students, so being part of that journey and being part of the voice makes me feel like there's an impact being made here on the community,” said Deese.

Watching her students progress and seeing their passion evolve is what continues to inspire her. Not only is she teaching them but in return they are giving her knowledge on how to instruct to her full potential.

Deese also receives great joy from watching her students grow intellectually and in their humanity. Teaching English to high school students has been her greatest journey and she expresses just how rewarding the career can be.

“My favorite thing to watch is when a student's product works and they can share it with their peers and it is a genuine, authentic sense of accomplishment. It brings me great joy to see them achieving their goals,” said Deese. 

Deese loves to bring new educators under her wing and help them to be the best they can be. Being part of the new teacher induction committee allows her to prepare her fellow instructors.

Passing on her knowledge and past experiences to new educators is also how she influences the next generation of teachers to carry on a support system and professional development in order to continuously improve the educational system.

“I would say that future educator coming into Jackson County you are going to have a lot of support, you are going to have a lot of like minded people that cares for students that are success driven but that are open and willing to help,” said Deese. “I feel here in Jackson County it is extremely personable and I think that is a place to be and I think any future educator coming into Jackson County will feel that.”