Johnston Health childcare teacher recognized for her efforts

January 3, 2014 


It’s her job to help teach the little ones at the Johnston Health Early Learning Center in Smithfield. But Jennifer Nouaim of Knightdale says she’s often the one who ends up learning the lesson.

“They teach you how to love life,” says Nouaim, who has been a teacher’s assistant the last three years. “Children know what’s most important: family, friends. It’s not the material things that matter most.”

Nouaim, who has worked in child care for 20 years, was recently honored as a Johnston Health Ambassador. The Ambassador program recognizes employees who go above and beyond the call of duty. Among other things, the honorees receive eight hours of paid time off and a personalized parking sign.

During a presentation, CEO Chuck Elliott said the teacher assistant stands out because of the joy she has for her work. “She performs her job with enthusiasm,” he said. “It’s evident that her focus is to educate and prepare children for their next steps in life.”

Nouaim says she’s always wanted to be a child educator. She took classes in child development while in high school and loved it. A few years after graduating, she enrolled at Wake Tech with plans to pursue an associate degree in early education. But she put those plans on hold after getting married and having children.

Now she’s back on track to finish her degree at Johnston Community College. This time, she plans to also earn a certification to teach special needs children. She’s gained experience from caring for her younger son, Hamzah, 11, who has special needs. An older son, Michael, recently graduated from Lees-McRae College with a degree in psychology and performing arts.

Helen Patterson, director of the Early Learning Center, says Nouaim stands out because she takes the time to share with parents the achievements of their children. “She also takes the time to celebrate with the children when they accomplish things,” Patterson said.

Eastern Wake News is pleased to provide this opportunity to share information, experiences and observations about what's in the news. Some of the comments may be reprinted elsewhere in the site or in the newspaper. We encourage lively, open debate on the issues of the day, and ask that you refrain from profanity, hate speech, personal comments and remarks that are off point. Thank you for taking the time to offer your thoughts.

Commenting FAQs | Terms of Service