NACTA Regional Directors are critical to the growth and development of NACTA. Regional Directors serve as a voting member of the NACTA Executive Committee. We asked our Southern Regional Director to answer a few questions that would give others an opportunity to get to know him on a more personal level. Here'e what he had to say. Read more...
2016-2017 Southern Regional Director -- Nick Fuhrman
What classes do you teach?
I teach undergraduate courses in environmental education, natural resource management for teachers, and teaching with animals. I teach graduate courses in educational program development and statistics.
What are your hobbies?
My wife Jess and I love to fish, hike, and experience zoos and aquariums (we love animals!)
Can you tell us a bit about your family?
Jess and I have been married for almost two years and we have a new baby boy, Miles, born in December, 2016. Jess is a twin and her brother lives in Miami. I have one sister, Erin, who is a nurse and lives in San Diego.
What was the best advice, regarding education, ever given to you?
Always be able to explain things so that someone on the street, not versed in your subject matter, can understand you.
Can you share your teaching philosophy in one or two sentences?
Students who I have the privilege of teaching will experience subject matter in ways they may have never experienced before (through outdoor activities and handling animals) and will have the confidence to share their knowledge with others in a non-intimidating, friendly, and understandable way. After our time together in class, I hope that they remember two important concepts for life: (1) enthusiasm is contagious, so pass it on to others and (2) although people you interact with may not remember everything you tell them they will remember how you made them feel.
Do you have one suggestion that might attract new NACTA members?
I think if we advertise that NACTA will not only help you build partnerships with other teachers, but will help you document the difference your teaching is making. NACTA will help you answer the question, "so what?" when it comes to teaching college students.
What is your favorite learning activity?
I love bringing in live animals to class. Specifically, when my students use live animals (such as snakes, turtles, and baby chicks) during presentations with special needs youth, it is a life changing experience for my students and their audience. They see the power of animals in building excitement for learning and even reducing anxiety toward public speaking.
What is one goal you have as a Regional Director for NACTA?
I would love to encourage more graduate students to get involved with NACTA. I started as a graduate student member in 2004 and have absolutely loved being involved! I'm now a life member.