Heather Correia is an Elementary Education major from the University of North Florida. She is not a new face at CCE because she was interning in first grade last year with Debby Cothern and Michelle Ellis. About her experience at Chets, Heather says, “I interned at Chets and immediately was enamored with the level of professionalism and skill that surrounded me. Everyone was so friendly and it felt like a big family. I learned more during internship than I did all through college. Debby and Michelle were such an inspiration and took so much time talking with me but also giving me creative freedom.”
We were so impressed with Heather as an intern that we quickly hired her to continue work in first grade this year. Heather is part of the Chao family, who are natives of Jacksonville Beach. Her father is a disc jockey and production manager for some local radio stations. Her mother has recently retired from the transportation business. She and her grandmother are especially close. Heather says her grandmother is definitely the center of the family. She probably spends more time with her grandmother than with anyone else. Heather also has a half-brother who is 15 and goes to Providence High School. He is a talented trumpet and piano player and also loves anything to do with computers.
Many Chets families might recognize Heather from Tae Kwon Do. When she was sixteen she started her own non-profit Tae Kwon Do school in Jacksonville Beach. Ninteen years later, she has taught many children and adults around Jacksonville. She says that when she walks down the halls of Chets, she often gets hugs from children who are very surprised to see her walking down the hall!
Heather has two dogs that she says are very spoiled. They love going to the dog park and walking on the beach! Heather plays the guitar and loves to sing…especially karaoke!
Heather has visited her extended family in Cuba several times, the most recent being five years ago. She says it was truly a life-changing experience because it made her appreciate what she has but also reminded her that happiness doesn’t come from material possessions.
We are thrilled to have Heather joining our first grade team. Welcome, Heather!