Evangelism Through Education
- By: Marta Oster
- Published: Mar 10, 2020 11:30AM
Brandon House ‘08 is currently working his dream job in New Orleans, Louisiana.
He serves as Head of School at a charter school, overseeing 1,200 students and more than 100 faculty members. Along with the Head of School role, he is a Purpose-Building Motivational Speaker, sparking others’ interest to pursue purpose with passion.
Brandon grew up in a lower-income community in Evansville, Indiana, which ignited his interest in education. In high school, he often felt like an outcast because no one could relate to him and his faith. He chose to attend Taylor for its discipleship community, something he had never experienced before.
Choosing an Education Degree
“The Taylor community taught me how to be proud of the faith while showing me what godly relationships look like,” said Brandon.
He was passionate about his faith as well as improving the quality of life for others. He saw he could pursue both of these areas by majoring in Education. Brandon believed his purpose was to build and sustain opportunities for others, and he decided he could have the most impact for Christ’s kingdom through a career in education.
“Many individuals believe education is the road to success, and that is where so many are placing their hope,” Brandon said. “Therefore, you have such a unique entry point in children's and family's lives when you are their educator to offer them the true hope of Christ.”
Brandon is a firm believer that your work is your mission field. He urges future students who are interested in an education degree to see it as more than just a career. “The environment you create, as one where you bring light, literally can shift the entire course of your students' lives.”
At Taylor, students have the opportunity to work as student teachers to prepare them for post-college experiences, and those classroom experiences start freshman year. “I was very grateful for the way Taylor's education department was set up to allow real-life exposure to experiential teaching every year,” said Brandon.
While at Taylor, Brandon was a student teacher for 3rd and 5th graders in Indianapolis-area public schools. “I don't believe I would have been fully prepared for my student teaching experience if I had not had the field experiences during my freshman, sophomore, and junior years.”
Brandon is grateful for the influence of the professors who impacted him, including Dr. Cindy Tyner, Co-Director of Student Teaching & Professor of Education. She saw that this was what he was called to do and pushed him to stick through the tough days, even when he wanted to give up entirely.
He was thankful for the way Dr. Quinn White, another education professor, gave different techniques and tips. For example, he emphasized the significance of using different voices for certain characters while reading to students.
“He helped me see that teaching can be so personal, and using our own personality can truly drive the lesson to connect with the kids,” says Brandon.
Overall, Brandon’s professors pushed him towards excellence through everything. He was taught to never settle, which he took with him moving forward into his career.
Post-College Professional Life
Educators tend to forget their true purpose and reason for their career choice, which is why Brandon decided to become a Purpose-Building Motivational Speaker on top of his role as Head of School. This role entails traveling around the country to encourage teachers to see that they are in a position to impact the next generation.
Brandon says, “Taylor taught me how to weave my faith into my profession and use that as the foundation for any actions that I take.”
Educators often sacrifice their desires for their students daily, but Brandon believes there is a bigger purpose for this. Through working in the education field, he has seen Christ from a new perspective and remembers how He sacrificed so much for us.