After graduating with her B.A. in American Studies from UC Santa Cruz, Valerie signed on with Volunteers in Asia to teach English as a Foreign Language in the Republic of Taiwan. After returning to the U.S., she worked in the management consulting industry as a marketing and research manager, researching industry trends, managing marketing campaigns, and serving as editor and proofreader for corporate communications.
Both those experiences led Valerie to an important realization about the power of strong reading, writing, critical thinking, and communication skills. She was inspired to help others achieve this potential, so she returned to school for her M.A. in English from Cal State East Bay and a Certificate to Teach English Composition from San Francisco State University. In 2005 she joined Foothill College, where she enjoys teaching English 209, 110, 1S/T, 1A, 1B, and English 50C (Technical Writing). Valerie is especially interested in reading and writing as acts of observing; she believes that the best way to learn (and teach) is to be active; and she is convinced that one of the most important skills for any reader, writer, and critical thinker is empathy.