Teacher of the Year: Erin Pickard

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Ben Radspinner

Business teacher Erin Pickard continues to work hard, despite her mostly virtual classroom. Pickard is delighted to be named Teacher of the Year during such a difficult time for students and teachers alike.

Morgan Holmes, News Writer

Like students, teachers are the life of the school. Even through this unpredictable year, Erin Pickard is devoted to her students. She enjoys her days at school and works hard to help her students, despite current circumstances. Her actions led her to be named Teacher of the Year.
After finding out she won teacher of the year, Pickard felt honored and shocked to have earned this impressive title.
“I was so surprised and grateful! I felt very honored by the people I work with because they´re all so wonderful and we all work really hard, and this year especially has been so tough,” Pickard said.
Pickard is an educator for Business, specifically, Excel and Computer Science Principles 1. She has been teaching for 15 years, and 6 of those years have been at West Forsyth. After receiving a degree in business from Appalachian State University, Pickard obtained a teaching license. Growing up, Pickard was surrounded by teachers, as both of her parents worked in education. Her mother was a speech therapist in the school system, then later taught Pre-Kindergarten. Her father was a Technology Director for a school system, so naturally, Pickard was around computers from a young age.
“When I realized that I could teach people how to use computers it seemed like a perfect way to combine two things that I loved, service and technology,” Pickard said.
Pickard loves those epiphany moments that her students have when learning, seeing when they figure something out.
“I love it when my students have those ´a-ha´ moments. Seeing when they’ve figured something out, see the value in a concept, or the connection between ideas brings me so much joy. It makes it all worthwhile,” Pickard said.
Business is an important class to take because the skills learned can be used in almost any profession. The courses taught in this department are a good way for students to get necessary skills that will help them in the future.
“They[students] can come out of high school with certifications and experiences that will give them a head start finding internships or jobs,” Pickard said.
Pickard likes to connect on a personal level with her students. She likes getting to know them and wants them to know that she is there for them to reach out to.
“I do my best to get to know them, show them respect, and show them that I care, because I genuinely do,” Pickard said.
She advises her students to not stress as much in their teenage years. She likes interacting with her students to make learning more meaningful for them.
“Try not to worry about little things and to find someone in your life to talk to when you start to worry, that you can trust to give you perspective and advice,” Pickard said.
Pickard enjoys how West shows so much school pride.
“The students, faculty and staff have so much pride in our school and it makes it a happy place to be every day,” Pickard said.
Students find Pickard´s kind spirit to be an uplifting part of the school day.
“She’s a really nice teacher. With all this COVID stuff going on, we should have nice teachers like her, who will tell us why she took off points on that assignment and let us redo that assignment for full credit,” sophomore Kaitlyn Bryan said.

“I have only had Mrs. Pickard as a teacher for a few months, but I think that she is a wonderful teacher and has been supportive of everyone in her classes,” freshman Emily Henson said.
Everyday, Pickard inspires students to do their best. She is a great member of the West community and works hard to support both students and coworkers. She enjoys teaching her students business skills that will come in handy after high school and throughout life.

Favorite Food: Italian Food
Favorite Movie: “Vanilla Sky”
Pets: Dog named Sky and a cat named Halley