Ila Jasinski attends Eastern New Mexico University because her “cost effective” program in education is offered “exclusively online.”

She is working toward her master’s in education with a concentration in elementary education. Ila lives in Portales, New Mexico, and hopes to advance her teaching practices through her courses to better provide the quality education her students need.

The graduate student grew up in a small suburban area in Northeast Ohio, with her younger brother, Anthony. Her dad owned and operated a mechanic shop while her mother worked full time.

Her parents, Charlie and Cindy, now work together at the shop, making it a “true family affair,” while Anthony earns his bachelor’s in psychology. Ila graduated from Struthers High School in Struthers, Ohio, in 2007.

While pursuing her undergraduate degree, she was on the Dean’s List every semester. She earned an ETS Recognition of Excellence Award and was also selected to present on behalf of the College of Education to the NCATE accreditation team. Ila received the Outstanding Performance in Student Teaching Award and graduated summa cum laude with membership in several honor societies.

The 28-year-old ideally hopes to create a love for learning in all of her students and will work hard to achieve that goal. “I hope to impart a love and passion for learning in all students and colleagues I come in contact with. I also hope that I can build relationships with my students so that, regardless of whether they left my class one, ten, or twenty years ago, they always consider me to be a supporter and believer in their corner,” she said.

In her free time, Ila enjoys traveling, playing tennis, riding horses and being outdoors. She also loves learning and will do anything to gain more knowledge. “My dreams are to see some of the most beautiful places this world has to offer, and then come home to a rehabilitation center for animals, especially horses,” she said. “I have been extremely happy to find that the professors I have courses with are interactive, open-minded and genuinely involved in the progress of their students,” she said.

She recommends Eastern to “both undergraduate and graduate students” because of her positive experience. Ila advises students to “do what you love, and love what you do. When you lose your passion, do all you can to set it aflame again. You can only give love to others after you have learned to love yourself.”