Celeste Petersen- Mathematics Instructor
Years at CCC- 2016 is my first year as a full time instructor, but I was an adjunct for 20 years.
What inspires you in your teaching at CCC? I am inspired by the students. All the students at Clatsop are determined to better their lives by attending college. I am inspired by the sacrifices they make and the struggles they endure to reach their goals.
What are you passionate about regarding your area of study? I love the way that patterns appear in nature. The spiral of scales on a pineapple or a pinecone, the leaf arrangement on some plants, the seeds of a sunflower all follow the Fibonacci number series, and that’s just one example.
What’s the most rewarding aspect of your job? The most rewarding aspect of my job is seeing the “Ahha moments” in students’ eyes. That moment when they suddenly understand the concept which they have been struggling with. These moments bring me pure joy.
What do you want students to take away from your class? Obviously, I want my students to come away with an understanding of the math concepts we address. However, what I really want is for my students to leave empowered to continue to delve deeper, to struggle to grasp things they don’t understand, and to see math as a useful tool in everyday life.
What background, training and achievements would you like to share? I grew up in the halls of Clatsop. First as a young child with her mother grading papers. Then a student earning my AAS degree here, and finally as an instructor. I have wonderful memories of my past at CCC, and am excited for all the new memories that will be formed here.
Anything else you would like to add? Finally, in the words of Winnie the Pooh, “Life is a journey to be experienced, not a problem to be solved.” Don’t get so caught up in the solution that you miss the beauty of the process.