2017 Southern EE'er of the Year - Lauren McLaughlin
Lauren came to Arrowhead Ranch as a teacher and has worked her way up the ladder to Program Director. She was a great teacher when she arrived, but it was her natural curiosity and excitement for science and finding new ways to share with her students and inspire them that made her a candidate to become our Program Director. Once promoted, her passion and energy grew even more as now her focus was not just on students but also the staff. She was given the freedom and opportunity to use her talent to help our staff become better educators to youth and ambassadors to the outdoors. She has increased the awareness and importance of professional development across our company, including doing research to design and implement a staff improvement plan with incentives for each individual. She has introduced new programs and new ways of presenting materials using the BEETLES program, as well as introduced technology to bring community based environmental projects wish sharing information with other students and learning centers across the country. The efforts Lauren has made to inspire and educate our staff has carried into a stronger and higher quality program being delivered to our students. Through our staff, Lauren is making an impact on 10,000 students from across Southern California each and every season.
When looking for our new Program Director, I was meeting with my assistant and asked "who is that one person who can bring excitement and new energy to our program to help us elevate our standards to the next level?". Instantly we both said Lauren's name at the same time. There are times where I have to reign her in because she has so many ideas and so much passion and energy for more - but I love that because whatever idea we choose, she makes it great. I know people that are pushing their program directors to come up with ideas - I do not have that problem! She is also currently working with multiple teachers from our schools as she is designing a new student journal for our program. I am proud to nominate Lauren McLaughlin, I have never worked with anyone more deserving of recognition as an Outstanding Educator and for Excellence in Outdoor Education.
Nominated by: Charlie Young