I praise God everyday for allowing me to be the librarian at Notre Dame Catholic School, because I can share my love of books and my faith with all the students. Being a librarian, also allows me the privilege of paying it forward for the many nuns and priests who gave of their time, love and knowledge while I attended Sacred Heart Catholic School first grade through seventh grade and throughout my whole life. I am who I am today, because of my parents, my family and my Catholic School education and my Catholic faith.
I am the oldest of eight children. All four of the girls in our family are lectures in their respective Catholic Churches. Two of the three boys are active Knights of Columbus members. We have all served on our church's board at one time or another.
I began teaching CCE when I was 19 years old. While attending Blinn Junior College in Brenham, I taught 9th graders Church History at St. Mary's. Also during this time I worked as a Student Librarian for two years at the Blinn Junior College Library.
At the end of my Sophomore year, I met Bob Wiedenfeld at an Aggie Retreat. After two years at Blinn, I transferred to Texas A&M in the pre-med program. Bob and I dated for a year, I decided to get a degree in Sociology with courses in pre nursing. Bob and I dated and at the beginning of my senior year, we were married where we met at St. Mary's in College Station.
I finished my degree, while Bob began his Ph.D. degree in Soil Chemistry. I graduated, found a job teaching Pre-School students in a private school in Bryan while Bob completed his research and dissertation. After teaching for two years and attending graduate school in Educational Leadership, we had our first Aggie--Phillip.
Bob graduated, and he was offered a job in Weslaco as an Associate Professor doing Agricultural and Water research in for Texas A&M. Phillip was six months old. We spent the next 30 years in Weslaco. We had three more children, Mary Helen, Katy, and Randy. I opened and taught at The Caring Place Care while we were having and raising our own children. I am very proud of the fact that the students who graduated from my pre-school are now--Doctors, Lawyers, Dentist, Publicist for Texas Monthly, teachers, and engineers.
While building the day care from the ground up, I completed my masters in education with an emphasis in Early Childhood and Reading. After all of our children entered public school. Weslaco Public School District offered me a job teaching a self contained third grade class. My class was a true heterogeneous class! For the next four years I taught Language Arts (integrated reading and writing) and Science on a three man team.
I then spent the summer at University of Connecticut (UCONN) talking classes with the top Gifted and Talented Specialist in the nation. I am a certified Gifted and Talented Trainer of Trainer and have taught PreK through Concurrent Enrollment College Professors the 30 hours necessary for the state of Texas to identify and teach gifted students.
I was also the Gifted and Talented Coordinator for the 5th and 6th grade campus where the students utilized the Runzulli Model. This meant that I tested, supplied guest speakers and activities and supported the student's independent projects and research. Students wrote up their results and presented their findings.
During the summers, I coordinated the Migrant Summer Program for the Junior High. The students studied such subjects as geology, genetics, and math history. At the end of the program, I set up field trips to allow the students to see how the knowledge of these subjects could support them in the future. Some of the field trips the students went on were visiting all the caves of the Hill Country, and staying in the dorm and discussing with professors their research in genetics at Texas A&M and Blinn. I also wrote curriculum for Weslaco I.S.D. in Math, Science, and Language Art to prepare the students for the TAKS.
Because I love learning, I went back to college at University of Texas -Pan American to student Educational Leadership (principal). When I completed and passed the state exam for certification, Weslaco asked me to be the summer school vice principal for all the students in the district who did not pass their initial TAKS test. Because of the team effort of our staff, teachers, and our students, the students earned highest pass rate to date at Weslaco.
The next two years I was the Vice-Principal at L.C. Smith in Raymondville. While I was at Raymondville, our TAKS scores were the highest scores in Raymondville I.S.D. I was also the the interim principal at L.C. Smith and principal at Center Point Elementary. The staff and student's earned an exemplary rating during my time there.
Our "Aggie Catholic" roots are deep! All four of our children attended Texas A&M. They all were very active at St. Mary's! All four of our children attended the retreats and three of the four were retreat team members. Our oldest son earned a degree in Environmental Engineering. Our oldest daughter earned a degree in Computer Engineer. She is one of the original members of St. Cecelia's Life Teen Group, and was just recognized for her work with vocations for the Houston Dioceses. Our youngest daughter graduated with a certification in Junior High Math and Science. She started and organizes the young mother's group for St. Lawrence's Catholic Church in Sugarland. Our youngest son is an electrical engineer and he is working in South Texas as an petroleum engineer. Randy is also a fourth degree Knight.
Bob and I are living our dream!!! We always said were would retire in the Hill Country. Praise God, He has blessed us!!!!