Kirsten dos Santos
Humanities Instructor: English, Composition, and Public Speaking
Arkansas City Campus
- BA in English Literature from Southwestern College
- M.Ed. in Curriculum and Instruction from Southwestern College
- On Course I Developmental Workshop: Certificate of Achievement
- Professional Memberships: Pi Gamma Mu member, International Honor Society in Social Sciences, Kansas Alpha Chapter
- Professional Experience: Presented at Southwest PCA/ACA and GPCA conferences
Receiving her bachelor's degree from Southwestern College (SC) 2009 in English Literature, Kirsten dos Santos became an adjunct instructor at SC. Enjoying the classroom experience, she still felt she wanted more background in teaching techniques and enrolled in SC’s Master of Education program in Curriculum and Instruction. She completed that degree in 2013 and moved to teach at Cowley CCC soon after. Later, in 2018 she studied graduate courses at Emporia State in Ethnic and Indigenous Literature to update her standing with the revised Higher Learning Commission’s accreditation standards.
Kirsten also brings a wealth of personal multicultural experience and understanding to her classroom. She states this is a “[strategy] that helps students to eliminate tendencies towards bias and accentuates the factors involved with living, respecting, and learning with all types of individuals.” Diversity is a vital and dynamic aspect of today’s existence, and she infuses her students’ classroom experiences with these concepts. Cowley students may not have grown up with intercultural communication in mind; however, as citizens of an ever-shrinking global community, they will benefit from these insights developed in the composition and speech classrooms and encouraged by dos Santos.
Believing that “communication is the foundation that moves most disciplines”, dos Santos strives to enthuse her students to gain a proficiency level that will serve them well throughout their careers in the classroom, the boardroom and the environment in which they live.
“More than imparting content and curriculum, I believe it is important to present myself as a person who doesn’t just “say” I care but actually demonstrates that sentiment. My intention is to open a space where learners feel comfortable being themselves. Satisfying that basic need frees their hearts and minds and creates a space where they can dream again. That is where the magic happens. That is when they reawaken the drive to actualize their potential. If I can serve as a mirror reflecting those probabilities, I have served my purpose.”
“My best days as a teacher are those when I become a good translator. These are the moments when I see a clear channel between what sparks their interest and academic achievement. When I find the bridge that connects my students to what they live and love on a daily basis, their academic involvement and achievement skyrockets.”