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New Alumni Board Chair

Annette Evans

Annette Evans was born to be a mentor. She will continue to use her talents and expertise to guide and direct others as she succeeds Marie Tuttle as alumni board chair for the David O. McKay School of Education

The overall mission of the alumni board is to, “help alumni stay connected to the McKay School and BYU by keeping alumni informed, involved, and engaged.” Evans’ goal as chair is to “utilize the talent and experience of the board members.” She envisions the board “continuing to be proactive in promoting education and helping alumni feel a lifelong connection to the McKay School.”

Evans began her career as a stay-at-home mom. In 1972 she married Kent Evans, whom she dubs “the most amazing person I’ve ever known.” After marriage, Evans stopped attending school to raise her family. When her oldest daughter was nine-years-old and her youngest was an infant, she decided it was time to work towards her bachelor’s degree.  Evans achieved her goal and graduated from BYU in 1987, but she didn’t stop there. After years of teaching middle school, she went back to school in 2001 to earn a master’s degree in educational counseling.

Evans became involved with the McKay School when she was given the opportunity to teach the classes of Secondary Theory/Methods and Classroom Management for six years as an adjunct faculty member at BYU. Evans was later invited to join the alumni board. She said, “I was honored and excited to stay involved with the McKay School.”

Evans looks back fondly on her teaching career but also admits, “I’d like to say that I have always loved being a teacher, but I haven’t.” Her first few years as a teacher, were “hard—challenging and rewarding—but hard.” Evan’s first real experience teaching was when she was hired as a student teacher at Springville Middle School, in Springville, Utah. It was difficult because she had to take over teaching midway through the year. But, after two or three years of teaching, Evans realized, “I not only could survive, but I could thrive as a teacher.”

Evans taught seventh-grade English and Spanish for 18 years. She says, “As I reflect on my career, I think it’s the little things that I remember most fondly, like the random note left on my desk saying, ‘Your a great teacher,’ even though we had just talked about the difference between ‘your’ and ‘you’re.’” One of her other favorite memories is “wearing a giant sombrero while lip-syncing ‘La Bamba’ and teaching students to drive a hard bargain in Spanish.”

Although Evans loved her teaching career later on, she says, “I never forgot how I felt those first years—how discouraging it was to be the first one at the school each morning and the last one to leave each night. No matter how many papers I graded, I felt like the pile never got smaller.” The first few trying years of Evan’s teaching career inspired her to become Nebo School District’s teacher mentor specialist for the last seven years of her career.  She says the inspiration came because, “I emerged with empathy for new teachers and a desire to help them through those first few years. I may not have always wanted to be a teacher, and I may not have always loved teaching, but I have always had the heart of a mentor.”

As a mentor, Evans has valuable advice to anyone in or considering the field of education. From her own experience, she counsels, “Don’t focus on what teaching doesn’t offer (such as high pay and low stress); instead consider what it does offer. . . . Teaching is a career where you make a difference in the lives of others. Even when you have a bad day, you go home feeling like you’ve done something good.” She also urges teachers to remember “As an added perk, kids say and do random amusing things all the time. As my husband always says, ‘Where else could you work where you actually get paid to be entertained all day?’”

Writer: Ashley Young
Contact: Shauna Valentine: (801) 422-8562