Students Turned Teachers Help to Advance New Life Academy’s Mission

New Life Academy (NLA) currently has seven staff and faculty members who are also NLA alumni. In the past, many other former students have returned to work and serve. Individual experiences at NLA may vary, but a common truth is this: the values that are instilled, the Scripture that is taught, and the character that is developed at NLA are all things that follow you for the rest of your life. People come back to work at New Life because of the impact the school has had on their lives. 

Amber Rodriguez, Class of 2015, now teaches middle and upper school science. She shared the reason for her return to NLA, “I came back to NLA because of the influence it had on my life. I love this school and the emphasis on community is really great. I wanted to give back after all that the school had done for me.”

Here is a breakdown of who our alumni faculty/staff are, compliments of their high school graduation photos, and what they teach/do: 

Since its start, NLA has centered itself around Biblical truth. This becomes a reality in the Kingdom Education model that is cultivated and encouraged by teachers, staff, parents, and volunteers who consistently invest in the lives of students. Kingdom Education works to develop students according to their specific abilities so they will be empowered to live a life characterized by love, trust, and obedience to Christ.

This is best seen in our graduates, like Lydia Stevenson (Dodds), Class of 2013. Lydia is the lower school intervention specialist. She shared, “I wanted to be able to work in a place where I could share Christ with my students while also working in an environment where I aligned with the mission.”

Ann Baur (Murray), Class of 1999, who now teaches middle school english, never saw herself coming back to NLA. However, when it came time to decide where she wanted her daughters to go to school, she wanted a place where she knew they would be safe and deeply loved. New Life Academy was that place for her, and she knew it would do the same for her daughters. From there, a teaching opportunity emerged and she gladly returned. 

The opportunity to foster Kingdom Education, invest in students, and shape students’ lives for Jesus draws so many back into the building. Abigail Countryman, Class of 2012, teaches upper school social studies. She stated, “The number one reason I came back was for the spiritual environment and the Christian atmosphere. I had a great experience and had incredible teachers. I love being able to openly talk about my faith and encourage my students in that. It’s great that I can experience it all over again and be a part of cultivating the great school culture.”