Riverview Employee Highlight - Carol Gould
by Michael Ward
The question seemed simple enough but yielded a profound answer. PARADE teacher Carol Gould asked her class, "What is one word that describes PARADE and our class here?" Immediately, and without hesitation, one student in her Thursday morning Language Arts class simply said, "Family." Upon hearing that response, Gould simply smiled, seemed moved by the genuineness and unassuming nature of the response and quietly repeated it.
For Gould, her career in education began with a degree in Fine Arts and Drama and a Masters in Education from Claremont University, part of the esteemed family of Claremont Colleges. Teaching graphic arts at Pomona College, also a member of the Claremont Colleges, Gould additionally worked as a set designer. Years later, a move to the Northwest found her opening a pottery studio she still manages and maintains to this day. Through her Terra Nova studio she has been afforded the chance to, "share in the madness of mud with students from ages 6 to 66!" Gould has also founded a clay arts program for Duvall's Northwest Arts Center and works for Arts Impact, an organization that teaches educators how to integrate the arts into their classroom curriculum.
And yet with all of her success and continuing desire to teach, learn, educate, and create, Gould distills everything down to one simple trait. "I think I am just a kid at heart. My favorite part of my work is simply interacting with my students and learning alongside them. I love watching students light up on stage or share their surprise as a painting comes to life. I never tire of their enthusiasm and willingness to try new things."
As a PARADE teacher for the last 12 years, Gould has also been the Riverview School District's Arts TOSA (Teacher On Special Assignment) for the last four. Recently, she has worked with Riverview Superintendent Dr. Anthony Smith on an arts installation at the Riverview School District's ESC building in Duvall. Commissioning art projects from all of Riverview's schools, Gould displays art of all types throughout the first floor of the building. Student projects are rotated annually, allowing students the opportunity to have their work seen by hundreds of visitors each year.
Consequently, it all comes back to that one word shared with her on that particular Thursday morning. Family is something which is felt by many of the students in Gould's PARADE classes and all across the Riverview Learning Center's programs. Gould says she often reflects on the notes, visits and graduate contacts she receives and whether she is teaching art, language arts, or drama, it becomes quite clear that making an impact on student lives is clearly a defining characteristic of her efforts. "There is no better joy than running into my current or recent students somewhere and having them excited to see me," Gould shares.
And perhaps in the world of education, nothing defines "family" any better than that.