Major: Early Childhood Education and Care
Elsa Moore was at home caring for her three young children celebrating each developmental milestone: when they wrote their name for the first time or when they developed the motor skills to use scissors. She found that her passion was working with younger children and uncovering their potential.
“I knew I wanted to be part of other children’s lives in a meaningful way,” she said. “The early years are so important and are truly the foundation for lifelong learning. I wanted to make a difference for other children and families. So, at 38, I enrolled in College of DuPage’s Early Childhood and Care Program—a decision I couldn’t be happier with.”
Moore did extensive research on various early childhood programs in the area before finally landing on COD.
“I was impressed with COD’s requirements for the Early Childhood Education and Care degree compared to other community colleges,” she said. “I felt as though the administrators were not cutting corners to just pass people to work in the field. They wanted to provide a quality program.”
When Moore began taking classes at COD, she knew she made the right decision.
“The class sizes were large enough to invite collaborative learning but small enough to be personal and inviting,” she said. “Each professor was professional, personable and approachable. With their varied years and range of experiences, I feel I received a well-rounded education. I appreciate the feedback and suggestions given by my professors; they helped me to become a better teacher.”
Having graduated from the program, Moore credits the program’s extensive practicum requirements for helping her land a job as a preschool teacher at Bright Horizons Family Solutions in Naperville.
“My practicum allowed me to practice everything I learned and prepared for in my classes,” she said. “It’s one thing to read something in a book or to write a paper, but it’s a completely different thing to put that knowledge to work in real life. I learned how to work with someone that has a completely different teaching style than myself. I also learned that I could make small but powerful changes in the classroom by using best practice and research to support the desired change.”
Moore has now finished her bachelor’s degree in Early Childhood Studies at Walden University. She is proud of her time at COD, a place she believes equips students for success from the moment they step on campus.
“I could not be happier with my COD experience. I enjoyed the online class availability, especially as a busy mother of three.”
Moore’s advice to students considering enrolling in the Early Childhood Education and Care program is to fully immerse themselves into their classes.
“What efforts you put in, you will get out of the experience,” she said. “The professors are passionate about the field and it shows in their curriculum and expectations. By the time you finish with your certificate or degree, you will be prepared for working with children, their families and your colleagues. I would absolutely recommend the program. I feel so lucky to have had the experience.”