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The Full Story of

Creatively Curious

Sami Roby and Son
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Mission

Creatively bringing solutions to individuals where they are to help make the world a little bit more accessible. 

Vision

I envision an empowered community that works with several systems united in building a bigger table that allows for collaboration as a community for creative solutions to problems.

About Me 

I grew up in Northern Colorado, and honor the deep pluralism I was raised with. I am a highly educated, neurodivergent, single parent to a neurodivergent child. Through the years I have gathered odds and ends of experience including: 8 years as a business owner, 2 years in Library Circulation, 5 years in AVID experience, 3 years of teaching high school social studies, 3 years of subbing K12 locally, 1 year of teaching in higher education, more than 10 years of tutoring experience, almost 1 year of non-profit and organizational leadership. Cumulatively, I have over 10 years of experience in education.

I strive to improve the community while working on being the best mom I can. I have tried many avenues to achieve this, and after creating an organization and attempting PhD level work, I have found entrepreneurial consultation is the best way to pursue this passion AND also embarrass my son a little by being at EVERY track meet. In a time that is so divided, I believe the best solution forward is through authentic conversations and pragmatic, accessible solutions. 

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Why Creatively Curious? 

Credentials and Qualifications

Sam Stegner, Colorado

I am very impressed by the things that this lady is capable of doing. I have seen wedding planning and photos all the way to book editing and helping me build an organization in our community. Sami is very knowledgeable about a lot of things and is easy to work with. I always appreciate the help and convos in working out a way to problem solve together. She has been a very rare gem to find! I look forward to continuing to collaborate and work together.

Skylee, Class of 2018

Ms. Roby’s class was always one of my favorites; she prepared engaging lectures and fun interactive lessons that held everyone’s attention! Ms. Roby saw students as individuals, and treated each of us with kindness and respect while understanding that navigating our education as high schoolers was tough at times. I’ve had many teachers over the years, but Ms. Roby has always held a special place in my memory- my high school experience would not have been the same without her!

Daphne Matson-Montgomery, Colorado

I've been homeschooling for the last two years because, like most children, my son excels at some things (ie. math) but Struggles with others (ie. reading) so I want to met him where he's at so he is never bored in math (which caused acting out in public school because he was advanced.) Sami has been instrumental with her experience as a licensed teacher to help me ensure that gaps are filled so my child is meeting the standards and not left behind. I love the one on one nature of homeschooling my child doesn't have to wait for the teacher to come around to help like he did in public school (which also lead to acting out and disciplinary actions.)

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August 2021 to Now

Building this Brand

How we got Here

Education & Experience Narrative

The Story

After being financially unable to continue my Teaching Diverse Learners Degree at University of Northern Colorado, and being unable to find a local teaching position, I worked a few odds and ends jobs, including waitressing at a nursing home and intermittently subbing. I also continued photography sessions with the most loyal clients, even through a torn meniscus! However, my physical health needed some desperate attention. While unable to bear weight after knee surgery, I helped a friend improve her curriculum for her homeschooled child and  wedding planning while she helped me work through household chores. As her maid of honor and realized the task breakdown such an event required. As her friend, I learned how decent homeschool curriculums are inaccessible without a certain income level, and how many gaps were in the supplemental supplies marketed as curriculum. I quickly started lesson planning and remembered why I loved teaching to begin with. 

Through this, there have been many problems in my neighborhood, that much of Colorado face; through a unique set of laws,  I worked with a neighbor to help create a residents organization to tackle these issues. These experiences and conversations were the earliest stages of creating an LLC and being full-time as a brand  started to surface. When I reflect on my culmination of experiences thus far - it is evidently clear that this was the path, even if I'm still building it!

I am currently a board member to the residents organization, and continuing to advocate to address systemic problems starting at home. I have launched Creatively Curious Incorporated, looking at how to invest in our future from my experiences. 

If you see me at an event, subbing, or in the community - come say hi! I cannot wait to continue building this and working with you!

Pending Endorsements

CDE

Pending:

Elementary Education (K-6)  

K-6 Social Studies

2014-2021

Graduate School (UoPX), Subbing into Teaching, Entrepreneurship,  Graduate School (UNC), & Leadership 

Licensure  

Colorado Department of Ed- Professional Teaching License 
Endorsed in: 7-12 Social Studies 

Substitute Teaching

Degrees: 

M.A.Ed - University of Phoenix 
Master's of Secondary Teacher Education. Content Area Social Studies. Magna Cum Laude.

Certifications: 

Transition Coalition -Enhancing Employment Outcomes

AVID Summer Institute -AVID Coordinating Teacher 

Advanced Placement College Board -AP US History 

The Story

After my undergrad, I was back at the same call center I had worked at through my degree, and simply could not make ends meet. When my son started kindergarten, I met a family who taught me how to get into subbing which paid a little bit better. I started subbing and looked into graduate school, and opted for University of Phoenix's program which was the most accessible for me at the time. I balanced subbing, a photography business (and learning that skill!) and parenting which looked so different with a school aged child! After completing my M.A.Ed., my son and I moved to a small rural town where I taught for 2 years. My first year I was the Student Council Faculty Advisor. This was too much as a first year teacher without any curriculum, especially as a single parent. My second year, my son was really struggling in education and was formally diagnosed with ADHD. It was a fight to get him the accommodations he needed, and we moved back to the Fort Collins area and I commuted 4 hours a day for 6 months! After that year I taught at another school but when my Grandma passed away, I knew teaching for the following year would not be a good fit. I worked at a For-Profit Higher education company, and was promoted within 2 months utilizing my library experience. However, shortly after the promotion, we found out the parent company was absorbing our program. From the death of my Grandpa to formally being laid off and the Pandemic starting shortly after, my life was a blur and simply surviving. Photography had fallen to the wayside with teaching, and through grief the last thing I wanted to do was pick up my camera. We were living with my parents, I was working nights at a box company, and trying to pandemic school my son during the day! During this time I also discovered I also had ADHD (which made my entire life make sense). I had considered going back to school, and found UNC's Teaching Diverse Learners Program. I applied and was accepted and started the next chapter that fall. I opted to maintain full time credit hours, started an organization (The Family Support Organization), partook in the 2030 Vision planning committee, and was a Senate Representative for the Graduate Student Association. Through this I maintained a 4.0, a lot in part because for the first time in my education I had access to accommodations that I had always needed. I also watched as so many friends teaching in a pandemic and the impact it had on students, them, and their families. Additionally, I observed the impact on student parents, and higher education's accessibility changed for student parents during the pandemic. I became unclear of where my place in education was, and I started research on Accessibility in Higher education and wanted to transition into a PhD in Higher Education - but the program at UNC was not taking on new students. I invested in new equipment and technology, considering how to build the next chapter of my life. However, in August of 2021 school and investments were no longer pragmatic options, pandemic unemployment benefits were ending, and something had to change. 

2008-2014

Undergraduate Education & Early Internships

Degrees: 

B.A. University of Northern Colorado  
Double Bachelor's of Arts

Psychology

Philosophy with an emphasis on Ethics and Public Policy

Certifications: 

AVID Institute -AVID Certified Tutor

The Story

My entire Undergraduate Education - I was a non-traditional student. I became pregnant my first year, and by my second year I was going back as a single parent. However, like many traditional students a lot of this time was spent finding myself and learning HOW to study. As a non-traditional student, this was paired with raising a small person and having to find a way to make ends meet for two people. When I went back to school, during the Recession, with a 6 month old son, I attended Student Employment days with the mindset of "I will take whatever job I can get." So when I was offered a position making $13 an hour (that was a lot in 2009!) as an AVID Tutor - I immediately accepted. I learned more about how to be a student as an AVID tutor than I had ever being a student. I learned enough to function with time management and organization, but my grades still struggled - especially exams with time limits. I partook in Student Senate and the Secretary HSS (Humanities and Social Science College) Government, but often struggled to balance the time commitment and parenting. I continued a lot of odd jobs, working based on what my class schedule was, and started taking on private tutoring clients that allowed me to bring my son with me, as I could barely afford daycare for classes and work alone. Towards the end of my degree, I was required to do an internship and I ended up working with data in the university and public libraries circulation departments, looking at programs impact on education. I also had the opportunity to work in archives and learned so much about document preservation and historical artifacts and primary sources. I had attempted other business start ups during this time, but it wasn't until my last year - when my grandfather invested in my camera - that I found a creative business that worked with my other obligations. This paired so well with what I had always known about the value of pictorial documentation, but after working in archives the value of the investment in photography is a clear match.  When I look back at these experiences, it is clear to me my lane has always been looking at how to help students best access an education through a variety of systems and keeping records for future generations to be successful. 

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