My name is Jill Edgren and I this is my 16th year teaching high school mathematics at Wood River Rural Schools. While the courses I teach may change some, this year I am teaching Algebra 1, Algebra 2, dual credit College Algebra and new next semester dual credit Applied Statistics. I grew up in a small south central Nebraska town called Guide Rock. I lived less than a block from school most of my life. As the youngest I was able to watch my 2 older brothers and 2 older sisters graduate from Guide Rock, but I unfortunately did not. My senior year our school did not have the funding to operate so the 7-12 students went to nearby schools with interlocal agreements. Ultimately I graduated from Red Cloud Community Schools and my school has been torn down.
Family and faith have always been a big part of my life. I decided to attend the University of Nebraska at Kearney with an academic scholarship and a music scholarship. I was a part of the Honors Program and spent most of my first year in the music department. What a blast! After two years in the dorms I lived in some campus ministry housing which was a fulfilling experience also. I graduated in May of 2003 with my Bachelors of Science for Math Education 7-12. My first year teaching was in Cedar Bluffs, Nebraska. The following year I began teaching at Wood River Rural High School. The National Science Foundation provided a grant through the University of Nebraska at Lincoln that was called Math in the Middle for math teachers in grades 5-9. This program allowed me to earn my Master of Art in Teaching Mathematics from UNL in August of 2008. Around this time, I was accepted and allowed to teach dual credit Math for Central Community College to some of your Wood River students and other schools through distance learning also. During this grant program, I was inspired for leadership and became involved in the Nebraska Association for Teachers of Mathematics where I was elected to go through the four presidential positions and again later as a region representative. Another amazing opportunity came about and I was selected for another grant from the National Science Foundation through UNL as a part of NebraskaMath. I was a Noyce Master Teaching Fellow and was granted another 24 graduate hours and spent a lot of time with some awesome math teachers who amaze me. I was given opportunities to teach and assistant teach some graduate math courses for UNL.
My husband, Kevin, proposed during my first year of teaching and we were married within a month of teaching at Wood River. This year we visited the church we were married in and a member took a picture to mark our 15th anniversary. Initially we rented a small place south of Wood River and eventually bought a house in Grand Island. All 5 in our family currently travel highway 30 each day to work and learn at Wood River Rural Schools. The family picture is from a year ago at my extended family Thanksgiving. My second grade daughter, Gabriella, and 5th grade son, Hayden, attend Wood River Elementary School while our oldest son, Ikaiah, is a 7th grader in the same building as me and Kevin. This year we are getting to experience watching our oldest son represent the school in Junior High athletics. Wood River is a great school for our kids, your kids, and us.