Minds We Meet—Sasha Steinbring

Interviewing Students Like You

Sasha Steinbring is currently working as a substitute teacher in Edmonton, Alberta, teaching primarily French Immersion in Elementary schools.  She graduated from University of Alberta and is now waiting to start her Master’s in School Counselling at Athabasca University.  This is her story.

Could you tell us a bit about yourself? Where do you live, what do you do, and what program are you enrolled in?

My name is Sasha and I am from Edmonton, Alberta.  I am currently working as a substitute teacher while I wait to start my Master’s in School Counselling.

Do you enjoy being a substitute teacher? Which grades and subjects do you teach?

I enjoy being a substitute teacher because it allows me to be in different grades and schools.  I am mostly in French Immersion Elementary schools, but I have also been in English schools and high schools.

What made you choose Athabasca University?

After I graduated with my education degree from U of Alberta, I wanted to find a master’s program that would meet my needs of working part-time and allow the flexibility that AU does.  So far, I have only taken two classes with Athabasca University, since they were prerequisites for the master’s program.  I’m hoping to start full-time in September.

Did you enjoy attending U of A? What did you like the most about your experience?

I enjoyed attending U of A as it was a new experience for me, and I had the chance to make new friends and meet new people.

Do you enjoy the structure of Athabasca University’s classes over University of Alberta’s classes?

I prefer AU’s classes as I am able to work at my own pace and I save a lot of time since I don’t have to commute to my classes everyday.

What do you do like to do in your free time?

When I am not studying, I like to try new restaurants with my family and my boyfriend.  I also like to play board games and playing with my dogs! Basically, just have a chill night with my family is my favourite thing.

What kind of board games do you enjoy playing?

I mostly enjoy playing crib, Yahtzee, and joker rummy!

What are your plans for this education once you finish? How does it fit in with where you want to go?

I plan to work as a school counsellor and possibly work as a registered psychologist as well.  Though, I have a lot more schooling to go in order to achieve that goal.

Why the switch in programs? Do you dislike teaching?

I always wanted an education degree, but I knew I wanted to take my education further with a master’s degree which will allow me to be a school counselor.

Who in your life had the greatest influence on your desire to continue learning?

My parents have the greatest influence on my desire to learn because they’re constantly making sure that I’m happy with what I’m doing and that I’m on the right path for myself.

Could you describe your experience with AU and online learning so far? What do you like and dislike about it?

I like that I can set my own schedule and work as fast or as slow as I want to.  It’s very flexible which is great.  The only thing I dislike is having to pay such a high learning resource fee when I can find the textbook for much cheaper myself.  Otherwise, so far, I like everything else.

Have you ever considered not continuing your education? What motivated you to continue?

The only thing that made me not want to continue with my master’s was the financial aspect.  It is a lot more expensive than my undergrad was, though after sitting down and calculating everything, I decided that this is what I want to do, and I will make the financial part work.

How do you find communicating with your course tutors?

My tutors so far have been quick to respond to emails and marked everything very fast.  I had my final exams marked the next day.

What famous person, past or present, would you like to have lunch with, and why?

Ellen DeGeneres.  She is so positive and full of energy.  It would be so refreshing to sit down and have a conversation with her.

What was the proudest moment of your life?

I would say that the proudest moment of my life was getting my education degree.

Describe one thing that distinguishes you from most other people.

Even though my parents only speak English, I am completely fluent in French.

How did you become fluent in French? Through school?

I did all my schooling in French from Kindergarten to University, which is how I became fluent in French.

Have you travelled? Where has life taken you so far?

I have been to France, Spain, Mexico, Dominican Republic and quite a few different provinces and states.