Citizen Schools Employee Spotlight: Vanessa Bishop

Vanessa - CSMA.jpg

What is your role at Citizen Schools?

Regional Director of Citizen Schools Massachusetts.

Before working at CS, what is the most unusual or interesting job you ever had?

I was an information operator - basically the human version of Google Maps (haha). People would call in to get phone numbers for individuals or companies. We would also provide directions to places.

What do you like most about your job now?

I love working with dedicated people who are passionate about serving our youth and communities.

What has been your favorite project at Citizen Schools? Why ?

Planning and implementing Summer Institute this past summer. As a region, we went into the summer with a lot of areas where we needed to improve and even encountered several challenges during the Institute.  There were several restorative and restructuring conversations and actions that happened in order to meet the needs of everybody. In the end, we were able to leave summer institute and walk into campus feeling accomplished, even more excited about our work and more connected as a team.

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What is one of your proudest moment at Citizen Schools?

I think my proudest moment was at this year’s Summer Institute.  The returning teaching fellows worked together to plan and implement an amazing welcome for the new teaching fellows. Some showed up as early as 6am to setup and decorate the morning of. The way everyone came together to welcome and embrace our newest members was an great sign of how we had grown as a team!

What are 3 words you would use to describe Citizen Schools?

Incubator. Complicated. Collaborative.

Where do you get your inspiration from ?

My faith and students. When I think about both of them, they give me a purpose to keep going when things are challenging. My faith reminds me that there is a bigger purpose in everything that I do.  On the same note, our students our the center of all the work and they deserve the best we can give.

What is one song that describes your personality?

Say I Won't - Lecrae, Andy Mineo

If you could pick one superpower, what would it be?

Reading books just by looking at them. Do you know how much I would know just by looking at my bookshelf!

What are five words (or less) of advice for others at Citizen Schools?

Keep striving!

Want to connect further with Vanessa, you can find her on LinkeIn here