To say that family plays a large role in Adult Basic Education Center Office Coordinator Theresa Bosteder’s life is an understatement. Bosteder began her role at Elgin Community College after her father-in-law, a former English as a Second Language (ESL) instructor, recommended the position to her back in 1994. She’s been at ECC ever since.
Growing up, Bosteder’s grandmother instilled in her that helping others was the most rewarding thing she could do. “That’s one of the many reasons I have stayed at ECC for so long,” she said. “The programs we offer do exactly that—help others on their journey—and I feel that I am contributing to something bigger and making a difference in our community and our students’ lives.”
Outside of her work, Bosteder is just as busy researching her family’s ancestry. “I would call myself an ancestral sleuth,” she jokes. “I’ve watched every episode of TLC’s Long Lost Family, and have been deeply driven to find any possible clue and documentation available to piece together my family history.”
Her determination and detective skills have paid off. Through her super sleuthing, Bosteder ended up finding a sister-in-law her family hadn’t met before who lives in Elgin. “Now, we have a wonderful new family member. I couldn’t be happier for my husband and his siblings who say that the best gift their late father left them was an older sibling.”
After she’s finished piecing together her family’s lineage, Bosteder hopes to visit the places where her ancestors have lived and document the journey. (Editor’s note: From Spartan Review to Long Lost Family—that’s an episode we’d tune in for.)
We caught up with Bosteder to learn more about her life and her work at ECC. Here is what she had to say.
In your words, what do you do at ECC?
I take care of faculty contracts, maintaining records, entering classes, ordering supplies, etc. to keep our division running smoothly in addition to providing assistance to our dean, associate dean, directors and faculty so they have what they need to effectively do their jobs.
What is your greatest accomplishment since you’ve been here?
My greatest accomplishment has been getting involved with Support Staff of Elgin Community College Association (SSECCA). I feel honored to work with such a great team of individuals who care about the well-being of their coworkers.
What was your favorite class in school?
Art has always been my favorite. I studied graphic design, but it was right before everything switched over to computers…in the cave man years!
What was your first job out of school?
I waitressed and I promised myself I would never do that job again. After that experience, I always make sure to leave a good tip.
What quote best describes your philosophy?
“Kindness is a language that the deaf can hear and the blind can see.” —Mark Twain
I enjoy working at ECC because…
It has given me the flexibility to put my family first while having a career that positively impacts the community I live in.