Jen Grilly

Older Home Center Teacher

Before Jen graduated from Indiana University of Pennsylvania with a B.S. in Elementary Education, she had an incredible opportunity to student teach at the Mckeever Environmental Learning Center, in Sandy Lake, Pa.  Always knowing she wanted to be an educator, Jen figured out that teaching kids about the natural world around them was her passion.  She taught for a non-profit called Nature’s Classroom for six years all over New England, focusing on forest and marine ecology with her students.  It was here she was able to hone her teaching and joke telling skills. In the summers and winters, Jen traveled and did seasonal work including working at a fish camp in Alaska and bike touring Scotland and Ireland.  Jen returned to Alaska to be a 12295268_10206306312630858_9065575531164491362_n (1)Wilderness Therapy guide for At-Risk teens before settling back in a classroom in Massachusetts for a couple of years as a Middle School Science Teacher.  Here, she worked to develop an athletic program and an outdoor education program.  Working for Esperanza was a transformative experience for Jen as she began to understand what it meant to teach a student vs. teaching a subject.  Offering a holistic education became one of her values as an educator.  An opportunity rose to work with students by providing wilderness intervention, and Jen moved to Maine where she has continued to grow and flourish as an educator before moving to Vermont.

Through her travel and non-traditional teaching experience, Jen found a great appreciation for how we are all connected to each other and share the same dreams, strengths, and challenges.  Her goals as an educator are to ensure each student feels important and valued in her classroom, and to help them see their own unique potential, just as her teachers have done for her.
When Jen is not in the classroom or working with students outdoors, she can be found rejuvenating her soul as she hikes, bikes, canoes, swims, practices yoga, or sits on her back porch with some tea.  She and her fiancé love spending time with their dogs, cooking, and sharing meals with great friends.