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Buena Speaks

The Student News Site of Buena High School

Buena Speaks

The Student News Site of Buena High School

Buena Speaks

Michelle McCracken makes headlines as addition to English department

Michelle McCracken
Michelle McCracken goes over journal questions and discussion in her junior class.

A smile crosses Michelle McCracken’s face, as she walks through the door to her new classroom, a reflection of her determination and hard work that paved the way for this very moment. 

McCracken is a new addition to the English department, and is teaching freshmen and juniors, though her journey at Buena did not begin there.

Throughout second semester last year, McCracken was working at Buena as an intern, while she was working towards getting her credentials. At first glance, McCracken may look like your typical high school English teacher, but there is much more to her than meets the eye.

McCracken is originally from the Bronx, New York, though she moved to Moorpark, Calif. when she was 4 years old and lived there until she moved away for college.

“I was the first in my family to ever attend college and graduate from college,” McCracken said. “So it was kind of like uncharted waters.” 

While in college, she attained two bachelor’s degrees in English education and Creative writing, and her second in television and film and broadcast journalism. McCracken’s college experience was a little bumpy, and it took her a while to adapt and learn the process of how college works.

“There was nobody to tell me how to do anything, I was figuring it all out on my own,” McCracken said. “But I graduated successfully, [though] it was a whole learning process.”

After graduation, McCracken worked in the media industry for 13 years as a local TV host in Denver, Colorado. Later she moved back to California and did digital media and worked independently doing freelance work.

As much as McCracken enjoyed her time working in the media, she got the feeling that she wanted to do something more meaningful, and found that working with kids in the education system fulfilled that feeling. 

“I got this calling, I wanted to do something different. [So] I made a whole career shift,” McCracken said. 

McCracken enrolled at Cal Lutheran University to get her teaching credentials and finished it this year, and is currently working towards getting her masters degree.

McCracken easily adjusted to this new change in her life and has been enjoying every moment of it. She has many goals for this year, but her ultimate goal is to create a fun learning environment where students can learn and appreciate English. 

“I want to [create] connections with the kids, and I hope that they enjoy the school year with me,” McCracken said. 

Like every other teacher, McCracken has a different life outside of what students typically see. She enjoys spending quality time with her family, traveling, and visiting the beach whenever she gets the chance, and to no surprise, she’s a book enthusiast.

“I love the Great Gatsby, it’s cliche because I teach [juniors],” McCracken said. “But I love the story line.”

Through balancing her home and school life, McCracken hopes to make it a successful and exciting year.

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About the Contributor
Viviana Avila
Viviana Avila, Staff Writer
Viviana Isabel is a senior at BHS and is a third year journalist for Buena Speaks. She's passionate about all forms of art, her favorite being performing arts, such as dance, but enjoys art in the form of writing, painting, and doing makeup as well.

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    Ana PachecoOct 10, 2023 at 7:25 am

    Congratulations hard work pays off. You deserve everything you worked for. We are so proud of you. God bless Ana & Sergio