April Alumni Career Profile
Name: Mary Ellen Bouchie
Class Year: 1971
Major: Elementary Education
Current Employer: Broward County Schools, Florida
Describe your career path since graduation.
Elementary and Special Needs Teacher > Adjunct Faculty at BSC > Assistant Principal > Principal.
What is your current position and how long have you been with your employer?
Principal for 8 years; 19 years in Florida.
Describe the main responsibilities of your position.
Running all aspects of an elementary school of 750 students. Large ESE and ESOL population with students 3 years old through 12 years old.
What do you enjoy most about your job?
What do you find most challenging about your job?
Describe your typical work week. (How many hours you work, your work environment, etc.)
I hire staff, work with students, meet with parents, arrange for parent and staff training, manage over a 3 million dollar budget, manage secretaries, custodians, cafeteria, paraprofessionals, teachers and support staff, use technology to organize and communicate, etc. A principal's job takes long hours.
What job search methods did you use to obtain your current position?
I went through an intern principal training program. I applied for assistant principal and then applied for principal all in the same county.
What advice could you give to students interested in your field?
When I hire teachers I find strength in applicants who have said they always wanted to teach and played school from early elementary days and those who come from a family with other teachers. This is by no means necessary. Anyone who thinks they want to work with children should get experience (camps, babysitting, schools) with them. They also need to speak to other educators for the pros and cons in the field as it has changed a great deal over the years.
Last Modified: April 7, 2005