“What inspires me is trying to do and be better.”
Meet Mrs. Laurie Hipolito, a Visual Design teacher here at Greater New Bedford Voc-Tech. She originally did not want to become a teacher. In her 20s, she spoke to her former professor, asking if she should get her Masters in Art. Her professor said “If you want to be a teacher, do it but if you don’t, then spend time working on adding pieces to your portfolio.” She ended up saying no and left her office to work on her portfolio.
Before becoming a teacher, Mrs. Hipolito worked in an industry for 20 years as a commercial graphic designer and illustrator for Herff Jones & Varsity Brands. She wanted a change in career without leaving her art background and skills behind so she decided to work at GNBVT. This is now her 7th year teaching and her favorite areas to teach are Adobe Photoshop, photo editing, illustration/drawing and logo creations.
Mrs. Hipolito enjoys traveling and doing things with family such as beach days, camping and eating out at restaurants. Her hobbies include cooking and baking, which is a nice break from teaching during the day. Over the years, she has had a dog, 3 cats, a hamster, 4 gerbils and several fish, her favorite pet being her cats. Some of her accomplishments is how she followed and continued an art career while maintaining both family and work life so she doesn’t miss out on events.
She struggles with trying to encourage all her students to meet their best abilities and efforts, as well as for them to start thinking about their future through positive planning so they can reach their goals. She explains that “It’s more difficult when the students don’t believe in their abilities or lack confidence in their future plans”. To overcome this, Mrs. Hipolito tries to motivate her students to the best she can.
One of Mrs. Hipolitos’ friends and fellow teacher motivated her to become a teacher years ago by casually suggesting to teach. This sparked her to get her license and apply to GNBVT. Her advice to a new teacher would be “The first 3 years are challenging with all the changes, but stick with it because once you get your materials set up, it becomes easier and easier.” Mrs. Hipolito is a wonderful, dedicated teacher and a kind and compassionate person. She is a role model for many teachers here at GNBVT.
Article and Picture by: Kai Paim, Senior Media Technology