August Student of the Month

Amy Pless recently graduated with her undergraduate degree in elementary education in May 2017.  She is now working on her Master’s degree in Reading Education as part of the Accelerated Admissions Program.  The program allows Appalachian students to start taking graduate courses as undergraduate students, giving them the ability to finish their Master’s degree in only one extra year.  As part of the program, Amy is also choosing to take her elective courses in Autism Spectrum Disorders (ASD), and will receive a certificate in ASD along with her diploma next May.  Amy is also currently working as a Graduate Assistant in the Anderson Reading Clinic.

Why Appalachian?

"Being from Wilkesboro, I spent a lot of time in Boone throughout my life.  I fell in love with the beauty of the mountains, and the community environment that Appalachian gives.  I always wanted to be a teacher, even through all the times I changed my mind in high school, my heart was always set on education.  I thought, what could be better than living in the beautiful town of Boone, while pursuing a degree in elementary education from the best teaching college in the world?  I applied early, got in, and immediately sent in my deposit to attend!”

Why Reading Education?

With an undergraduate degree in Elementary Education, Amy felt that specializing in Reading Education would better her teaching, and open up new doors in her career.  Her passion for reading is one reason she chose to become a teacher in the first place, so learning how to effectively teach struggling readers is a goal she cannot wait to accomplish.  

Who has been an exemplary advisor or faculty member in the RESE department?

"The better question would be, who has not been an exemplary advisor?  All of the professors I have had in the RESE department are full of passion, support, and knowledge.  However, Dr. Morris has really inspired me!  He is so passionate about helping struggling readers, and I see that same passion in myself.  Working as his graduate assistant has given me a great insight to all the work he puts into making sure his college students are prepared for their careers as reading teachers.  If I can influence the lives of even half the children that he has, I will say I have had a successful career.”


Amy’s plan for the future is to move to Asheville, NC after graduation.  She hopes to gain a job as a classroom teacher, and see where her path takes her.  If, years down the road, she chooses to be a reading specialist, she will have that option, and be well prepared for the job.


Amy Pless
Published: Aug 3, 2017 10:10am