Class of 2020: Cole Alexander

Cole Alexander’s lesson plan: teach, encourage, inspire

By Amber Stark

Cole Alexander had potential career fields narrowed to down to three when he realized that one of them aligned with an activity he was already involved in – teaching.

The incoming freshman said his time helping kids in the STARS after-school program, being a group leader at his church’s Bible school and being a Sunday School teacher made him realize something: “I love to teach. I love helping people and children learn and grow – and decided it’s what I wanted to do for my career.”

Alexander grew up in the Findlay area and graduated from Pandora-Gilboa High School in May. In addition to his volunteer work, he played football and basketball; participated in choir, cabaret, plays and musicals; and was a member of QuizBowl, student council and yearbook. He was also a teacher’s aide, which aligns with his chosen profession.

“I chose the major of early childhood education because of my experiences with volunteering,” he said. “I enjoy helping people in this regard because when you see something click for someone, and that light in their mind goes off, it gives you a happy feeling inside.”

Alexander recalled one such occasion from when he was a junior trying to help an elementary student learn double-digit adding.

“He was struggling with it and I would guide him through the problems. All of the sudden, he did one by himself, and he lit up like you couldn't have imagined,” he said. “It made me so happy for him, and made me happy, too. He finished the rest of the problems on the page needing little to no assistance, and that felt really good.”

 

Alexander chose Bowling Green State University for several reasons, including the dual-licensure degree, which he said will make him extremely marketable, and BGSU’s reputation in the field of education. I

“When I visited Bowling Green, I was attracted to the facilities, particularly the rec center and dormitories,” he said. “I was also impressed by how friendly and down-to-earth the staff was. BGSU felt like a place I could really call home.”

Alexander received the Award of High Distinction Scholarship, which is competitive.

“The interview process was intimidating and exciting at the same time,” he said. “I was nervous to interview and anxious to see if I would be chosen to receive the scholarship. When I got the notification and call from President Mazey about receiving the award, I was very excited. This will help me on my path.”

As part of receiving the scholarship, Alexander will participate in Honors College, which he said he is looking forward to. He said he’s excited to take tough classes that will allow him to grow intellectually and see things from a different point of view. He’s also looking forward to the challenge of doing an Honors Project.

While at BGSU, Alexander also plans to play intramural sports and get involved in various organizations.

“After graduation, I hope to secure a job teaching in a decent-sized city, and eventually move back to northwest Ohio to teach when I decide to start a family,” he said. “In my mind, there’s not much more rewarding as far as careers go.”