Whitney Erickson
Story City, Iowa
Whitney Erickson

Future small-town teacher

Whitney comes from a family with deep connections to Northwestern. Her parents attended and met at NWC, and many of her aunts and uncles are Red Raiders. In addition to her major in elementary education, Whitney is earning a reading endorsement. She’s involved on the Campus Ministry Team as a Discipleship Group leader and serves as an admissions ambassador. Her dream is to teach in a small school district near the area where she grew up.

Grade A education
I knew I wanted a smaller school that would not only give me the best education, but challenge me to grow in my faith as well. Northwestern checked all of my boxes, and it felt like home as soon as I stepped on campus. I was drawn to the welcoming community, top-tier education and intentional relationships.

Positive impact
I’ve always loved kids and had the desire to spread the love of Jesus to younger generations. The Lord made it very clear to me the past couple of years that education is where I can best be a vessel for him. I want to have a positive impact on my future students and consistently remind them they are loved, capable and worthy. As an educator, there is so much more than simply teaching students the required curriculum. It’s showing them love and giving them the confidence to accomplish their goals.

Early experience
Northwestern’s education faculty are amazing and constantly teach that faith goes hand-in-hand with learning at all levels. I really appreciate how quickly education majors are given hands-on experience in the classroom so we can determine early if this is the career path for us. The faculty and staff in the education department pour into students both educationally and spiritually so we can become the people God has created us to be.

Teacher as servant
Faith and learning is integrated into every single class every single day. The education department’s philosophy is “teacher as servant.” My professors emphasize this philosophy and remind me that my mission as a follower of Christ is to serve and love those around me. Being an educator is about being the light of Jesus to every child who enters my classroom.

Added value
The biggest thing I’ve gained at Northwestern besides an education is intentional relationships. I’ve met lifelong friends—people who encourage and uplift me and constantly push me in the direction of the Lord. I can clearly see that God has placed the best people in my life here at Northwestern to help me grow in my faith.