Our team at NC3 has some impressive employees in our ranks and this Staff Spotlight series aims to highlight the incredibly talented individuals who work with us. We’ll be featuring a new interview in our monthly newsletters, here on our website, and on our social media pages each month.
This month’s Staff Spotlight features NC3 team member, Erika Staackmann. Erika is NC3’s Customer Success Coordinator, which means she acts as a liaison for all of the instructors in the NC3 Network — all 2,895 of them!
After having worked alongside NC3’s instructors for only two short years, Erika discovered the immense difference that was being made in the lives of their students first-hand. She immediately took the initiative to try and showcase this in a big way. She put her creative mind to work, proposed a plan, and 3 months later NC3’s monthly achievement award ‘School on the Rise’ was born! Since launching this award in January 2020, NC3 has celebrated 11 well-deserving schools from all around the country.
To learn more about Erika, what sparked her interest in career and technical education, what she likes most about her job, and more, check out our Q&A session below!
What sparked your interest in career and technical education?
I think coming from an agricultural background has shown me the value that Career and Technical Education brings to our country. My family has farmed land in Illinois for almost 200 years so I really relate to individuals pursuing a career in the trades. I’m really proud to work for an organization that encourages and uplifts CTE.
What do you like most about your job?
I love the relationships I’ve built with our instructors and knowing that they can rely on me to help them with anything they need.
What job(s) did you do before you started working with NC3?
My degree is actually in Horticultural Science and Production. I was a Farm Manager and Florist at a flower farm in Sevierville, Tennessee before coming to work at NC3. We grew flowers and foliage for local florists and floral designers. We would also design our own arrangements for weddings and special events. I would make bouquets and sell flowers by the stem at our local farmers markets as well.
What do you like to do on your days off?
On my days off, I mostly hang out with my family and friends. We like going to breweries and trying new restaurants. We’ve got a lot of new things opening up in Knoxville that we love to explore. And since we live close to the Smoky Mountains, we do a lot of hiking and kayaking on the weekends.
What’s something most people don’t know about you?
I love to sew! I often shop at vintage or second-hand stores and alter the clothes I buy.
What has been your favorite project while working at NC3?
School on the Rise! It’s been such a rewarding experience to be able to recognize different schools within our network that are changing the lives of their students in such a powerful way.
How do you define success?
Success to me is just living a happy and healthy life. If you can look back and be proud of yourself and your accomplishments, I would say you’ve been pretty successful.
What is a superpower you wish you had?
If I had a superpower, I would want to have the ability to teleport. I love to travel so if I could go wherever I wanted at the drop of a hat, that would be amazing.
Do you think NC3 has helped you in your career development? If so, how so?!
I think I’ve gained a lot more confidence! I’ve been able to make use of skills that I didn’t even realize I had before. I’ve greatly benefited from the teamwork aspect of NC3 as well. Working together and relying on each other has really strengthened my determination to succeed, both at NC3 and for myself.
Want to learn more about the ‘School on the Rise’ monthly achievement award, or get a question answered about NC3certs.com?! Click here to contact Erika today.