Mt. Vernon, NY- We all encounter difficulties and obstacles, but how we rise up to these challenges is what counts. How rewarding is our journey when our setbacks guide us to help others enrich their own lives?
SusanMarie Stanton is a licensed school-certified social worker who has served the Mt. Vernon board of education for 26 years.
But perhaps most remarkably, Stanton has accomplished this with cerebral palsy, which causes paralysis on her right side, as well as dysgraphia that impairs writing. Stanton was determined not to let her disability prevent her from seeking a rewarding career.
“All people with special needs want to be accepted. There is no reason to be singled out,” says Stanton. “At first I had a difficult time finding work, but God puts you where He needs you most. He placed me where He knew I would fit, working with children in the school system. Now when I get up in the morning, I love what I do and I don’t know anywhere else I would rather be.”
Stanton’s career path led her back to the very school she attended as a child: Pennington Middle School. She says she feels extremely blessed to be able to work with her former teachers. Living in the same town where she works lends a certain camaraderie and solidarity with the parents of the children she mentors.
“I have been fortunate to work for the Mount Vernon board of education whose motto is no child left behind, “says Stanton. “Parents tell me they feel much more secure knowing I sat in the same seats their children are sitting in now. It’s an honor and an overall great feeling to work in the Mount Vernon school system.”
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