Family legacy

Graduating from BGSU, becoming a teacher is a family tradition for Emily Treece

By Bob Cunningham

Emily Treece’s career path may have been predestined. After all, she became a fourth-generation teacher this semester, following a family tradition after graduating from Bowling Green State University in May.

“My great-grandparents, my grandparents, my mom and all of her siblings and me, so her whole side of the family, were all teachers who went to BGSU,” said Treece, who is teaching geometry at Avon High School, west of Cleveland.  

Treece said her great-grandfather taught high school shop at Bowsher in Toledo and her great-grandmother taught elementary education in the Springfield Local School District in Holland, Ohio.  

“Their daughter, my grandma, came to BGSU and met her husband, my grandpa,” Treece said. “My grandpa was a history teacher and then he went back to school to get his administration degree and ended up being an athletic director. He worked all over the Toledo area, including St. John’s (Jesuit High School) and Lake (Local Schools).”

Treece’s grandmother was an early education major and also worked in the Springfield district.  

“Then my mom and her two brothers went here too,” said Treece, who graduated with a Bachelor of Science in  adolescent to young adult education — integrated math. “My mom was elementary ed., but currently she’s at Perrysburg Junior High. Her older brother was a history major and taught history for a long time. Now, he’s the principal at Swanton High School. Her younger brother is a high school English teacher in Seattle.”

The family teaching streak, however, almost stopped with Treece. When she started at BGSU, she was an art education major. Soon though, her love of math and her family legacy were too strong to resist.  

“My mom’s a teacher, so I used to go in her classroom and help her set up,” said Treece, who did her student teaching in an algebra II classroom at Bowling Green High School. “I used to play ‘school’ as a young child, so I definitely had an idea that that was one of my career options going into college, for sure.

“I didn’t realize how special it was until after I was on campus. Knowing my family’s legacy and knowing they went through the same thing and knowing they could help me if I needed it. And it was nice to be around home and have that knowledge. I’m from Perrysburg, so Bowling Green High School is familiar to me. It was just nice to be in that setting.”

Of course, the reputation of BGSU’s  College of Education and Human Development didn’t hurt either.

“I think BGSU gives you a lot of practical experience, even first and second year they were putting us in the classroom, which isn’t as typical at some other schools,” Treece said. “It gave us a lot of practical experience in the classroom. I think the size of our classrooms, though not too small, enables you to get to know the people in your major really well. You ended up having the same classes with the same people throughout your college experience.”

Having a close-knit group to relate to as future teachers was an invaluable experience for her.

“It just became a support system going into student teaching and a way to bounce ideas off of each other,” Treece said. “I think that kind of community that BGSU fosters is really important going into your first couple years.”