Southwestern Art Teacher Talks Of Lifelong Passion
Jenny Brown, an art teacher at Southwestern Central School District, shares her artistic passion with her students each and every day she comes to work.
Recently, Brown gave some insight into her teaching career, her love of art and more to The Post-Journal. Brown offered a window into why she does what she does in both her work and private life in the following interview.
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PJ: Have you always lived in Chautauqua County? If not, where else have you lived?
JB: “I am originally from Olean. I lived in Buffalo while I went to Buffalo State College and then moved to the Jamestown area.”
PJ: Have you always been at Southwestern?
JB: “I have been at Southwestern High School for 21 years. This is the only teaching job I have ever had.”
PJ: Have you always wanted to be a teacher? When and how did you discover you wanted to be a teacher?
JB: “Inspired by my own art teachers while in school, I always wanted to become an art teacher. I originally went to college for business as it was believed to be the “practical” thing to do. After graduating and working in the business field for 5 years, I felt a sense of loss without art in my life. It was then that I went back to school for Art Education.”
PJ: What got you interested in art?
JB: “I have been interested in art since I was a child. Art has always been an important outlet for me and a way to connect with others.”
PJ: What makes teaching students art so interesting? Do you have a particular story you’d like to share?
JB: “Art is such an expression of one’s self and when you can share that gift with children it can be a very fulfilling experience. The most interesting part is that you really don’t know the impact you may have on a student in your daily experiences. It’s only later, maybe even years, that you find out how you may have impacted a child. I have received quite a few emails or messages from former students thanking me for being their teacher and telling me how something I said or did has helped them in the real world.”
PJ: Is there anything about teaching that is especially difficult or especially rewarding?
JB: “Teaching is a very unique profession in itself. Each year it is like starting a new job, which keeps it very fresh and exciting. The greatest reward is seeing a student excited about what they are creating.”
PJ: What are some hobbies and interests you have?
JB: “I enjoy painting at my in-home studio, reading and spending time with my family.”
PJ: What else should readers know about you?
JB: “I am an active professional artist who specializes in pet portraiture. My work can be viewed at my website: brownpaintingstudio.com.”