The question of whether or not to attend graduate school is in the forefront of graduating seniors’ minds. While many college seniors begin their last year pursuing graduate school plans, only about 20–30 percent of the senior class end up enrolling in graduate school immediately following graduation. Most graduates opt to work a year or two and then pursue graduate school plans. Although there are advantages to both choices, Guinevere Deaver decided to teach for a few years before coming back to BYU to earn a master’s degree in linguistics.
Deaver graduated in 2008 with a bachelor’s degree in Spanish teaching, having received her teaching certification through the McKay School of Education. After graduation she taught Spanish in two middle schools in the Alpine School District and at the Missionary Training Center. Now as a student in the master’s program, she teaches Spanish at BYU.
Deaver’s decision to return to school for her master’s had been her plan since she graduated in 2008. “I wanted to complete a master’s degree because I had some long-term career options that I was working towards,” Deaver said.
After making the decision to return, Deaver had to decide the direction she wanted to take her continued education. “I chose linguistics because I really enjoy the mechanics of languages and the doors of communication that are opened from that understanding,” Deaver said.
The next decision for Deaver was where to earn her master’s degree. A key factor in the decision was location; however, because of her good experiences at the McKay School, coming back to BYU was an easy choice. “I can’t think of a class at the McKay School that hasn’t been helpful to my teaching,” Deaver said. “At the McKay School I learned to value students as people with hopes, fears, struggles, and potential. There are many times when something I learned in a class or an experience I had here crosses my mind while I am teaching.”
With many decisions involved in the process to go to graduate school, Deaver has had to make a variety of decisions. However, Deaver knows she wants to stay in education and continue to be the teacher that the McKay School taught her to be. “Because of what I’ve learned at the McKay School, I will always try to treat students as the amazing people they are and to push them to achieve their potential and avoid complacency.”
Deaver and her husband, Max, live in Provo, Utah. Deaver has now completed all her coursework and passed the specialty exam. She currently is working on her thesis research and hopes to graduate in August 2013.