Sandy teacher promotes healthy living as key to success
As someone who has worked especially hard to accomplish her goals in life, Sandi Carter strives to help others be equally successful. That's why she became a teacher.
Carter has been a health teacher at Sandy High School for 22 years. She also advises the school's HOSA group of future health care professionals.
"I just like sharing," Carter said. "I want to help people achieve their goals. I love sharing content, knowledge I've gained through my experience."
Though health wasn't her originally intended topic of study, she always wanted to teach. "I went into college to be a music teacher," Carter noted.
She's played saxophone, French horn, flute and piano, and actually still sings in a local band called RPM.
"My sisters were both in health care and that always kind of inspired me," Carter said of her decision to put a focus on health education over music. "I'm very passionate about health care. It seems like there's something in my family's blood. Without health, you have absolutely nothing else. The rest of the content doesn't matter if you don't have quality of health."
Carter received her bachelor's degree in school health education from the University of Oregon, and her master's degree in curriculum and instruction from Portland State University.
In her 20-plus years in education, 48-year-old Carter said she's enjoyed being a resource and role model for students.
"It's hard sometimes being a teenager," she noted. "There are so many options for them, and it can be overwhelming. (I try to) help them gain experience and explore options beforehand. I also talk to kids about choices and how daily lives can impact your health."
Carter considers herself fortunate to have students starting at freshman year through graduation, and enjoys "watching them grow, (and) get something they didn't before."
"My students are very motivated," she said. "There's an endgame out there somewhere."
While she loves the chance to help students succeed, Carter admitted that can be a challenging task.
"I think politics plays a role, and sometimes that can make teaching a challenge," she said. "As I head into the twilight of my career, I'm adapting to new changes in culture. Attitudes and values around education, and expectations parents and families have around education have changed."
When she's not in the classroom or singing with RPM, Carter likes to keep active by skiing and traveling.