We are proud to announce that PMC’s alumna, Pamela (Pitts) Chandler ’97, published her first children’s book, The Adventured Star. The book follows Najma, a confident traveling star, and introduces the readers to the culture, climate and language of the United Arab Emirates. Originally from Boston, MA, Chandler has been an educator to both children and adults for over 13 years. In 2011, she came upon an opportunity to teach in Abu Dhabi, where she now resides with her husband and daughter. Her move was the inspiration to writing the book. Chandler holds a Bachelors of Arts degree in Psychology and Sociology from Pine Manor, and a Masters of Science degree in Education from Simmons.
How did your time at PMC might have influenced your career choices and goals?
I began my freshman year at PMC a few weeks after I turned 17. Unaware of what it really meant to be in college, I was young and very much in need of guidance. The best thing that I had going for myself was potential. And albeit being a bit rough around the edges, there were many who recognized that potential. They fueled my confidence and gave me the guidance that I needed. I eventually became so involved in the happenings at PMC, that I felt like I was PMC (In fact, I was the Gator [mascot] for quite some time.) I played sports, I was a peer advisor, a resident advisor, I managed the computer center, and I was a teacher assistant for several professors. I knew that I had been given all the tools to succeed. I was a little girl when I began, but graduated a poised woman ready to take on any endeavor. I credit so many in my success, the professors, the resident coordinators, the coaches, the deans, the career advisors and so many others. Pine Manor College is the foundation of everything that I have become.
Did motherhood influence your decision to write the book and your decision to move and teach in Abu Dhabi?
I chose to move to Abu Dhabi for the experience and opportunity. I wanted to see another part of the world and thought it would be great exposure for my daughter. The idea of her learning a new language and interacting and knowing another culture made it a very easy decision. It was actually our move to Abu Dhabi and my daughter’s experience that inspired the book.
How has your teaching in Abu Dhabi different from your teaching here in Boston?
For the most part the teaching is the same and the students are the same. I use most of the resources and tools that I used at home and they are very effective.I work in a school that is using an American curriculum, so it was easy to adjust. There are a few cultural differences that you need to be mindful of, but it didn’t take long to adjust. The greatest difference is working with so many teachers from so many different countries.
What do you see as your continuing personal growth? Will your book be available in other languages like Arabic?
I will continue to teach and seek out opportunities to develop. I am sure there will be more writing projects in the future.Prior to moving to Abu Dhabi, I was a Literacy Coach, helping to develop and support educators in the areas of reading and writing. I would like to use that experience to assist educators abroad. The Adventured Star introduces a few basic Arabic words, but it has not been determined yet if it will be translated.