Kara Hile Teacher OTW

Danville High School teacher Kara Hile shows off her remote teaching setup.

Listen to this article

Email nominations to Anthony Zilis at azilis@news-gazette.com

Kara Hile, Danville High School, Photography, Computer Applications, and Multimedia Broadcasting teacher

Teaching wasn’t in KARA HILE’s plans for most of her time at the University of Illinois, where she studied advertising.

By the time she finished school, though, she realized it was her calling.

She’s always gone above and beyond during her 10 years at Danville High School, where she’s the senior class and student council sponsor in addition to her role as photography, computer applications and multimedia broadcasting teacher.

This year, her enthusiasm has shown as much as ever. The Danville native designed T-shirts for staff to wear during their remote-learning sessions and took the lead on the school’s yearbook project at the outset of the year.

“It is no secret to administration or staff that Kara always goes above and beyond to support students, no matter what,” Principal Tracy Cherry said. “She is someone whom I depend on and respect for her willingness to put others first, and her positive example of love and pride for what she does on a daily basis.”

Here’s more on Hile:

I find my work important because ... Career and Technical Education allows students to explore different career pathways and get experience before beginning their post-secondary work.

My students have the ability to earn industry-standard certifications in Microsoft Office and Adobe, and learn unique skills that set them apart from their peers when it comes time to apply for college or start their first job.

I knew I wanted to do this for a living ... a few weeks before graduating from the UI, when I did some soul searching and realized teaching was my calling.

It was the best decision I have ever made. I love working with young people in a career where I know I am making a difference. It has been so inspiring to watch my students grow and transform into hard working and successful adults.

As far as my favorite/most unique lesson to teach ... every single day in multimedia is fun and exciting. I love giving students the freedom to create their own media-rich projects, which uncover hidden passions or talents.

In this class, students are flying drones, producing their own short films and expressing themselves creatively though photography.

There is nothing better than watching them have fun while they learn.

It’s been a privilege to ... work with the students of Danville High School as a teacher and extracurricular adviser.

Being able to give back to my school and my community is something that I am most proud of.

I’m also passionate about ... my family, cooking delicious meals, anything crafty.

My own favorite teachers in school were ... Mrs. Glenda Campbell and Mrs. Debi Hosch (both former PE teachers and coaches), who left lasting impressions on me as a DHS student, and now current DHS teacher.

They have always been loyal and proud supporters of all things DHS.

When it comes to engaging students during this strange time ... from the beginning, I have tried to make their experience as normal as possible. But teaching in the middle of a pandemic has certainly made it more challenging to demonstrate and learn hands-on skills. Every day, teachers and students are learning to adapt and overcome these obstacles.

My students have been full-remote all year long. During the first few weeks of school we upgraded their Chromebooks to HP laptops so they were able to use the standard software that is normally taught in class. I also provided each multimedia student with a Nikon camera, a few lenses, a tripod, shutterbug, and other fun goodies to enhance their projects. I have also tried incorporating more phone apps like TikTok, Pic Collage and even some games into their learning experience.

If I weren’t a teacher, I would probably do ... something in the food or hospitality industry.

Trending Videos