Scottsdale Charros name education fellowship winners at SUSD

A view of one of the many Scottsdale Unified School District school sites in central Phoenix. (File photo)

A view of one of the many Scottsdale Unified School District school sites in central Phoenix. (File photo)

Two Scottsdale Schools teachers have been selected as this year’s recipients of The Charro Foundation Education Fellowship.

Ashley Hohaus

Ashley Hohaus

The Charro Foundation Education Fellowship program was established to encourage teachers in the Scottsdale Unified School District to maintain their dedication to the field of teaching and become accomplished teachers by continuing their education at ASU in a master’s program in the Mary Lou Fulton Teachers College.

This year, two SUSD teachers — Ashley Hohaus and Emily James — were selected for a $14,250 fellowship that will allow them to further their education and commitment to teaching.

The Scottsdale Charros say they believe  these fellowships assist in easing the financial burden of graduate education, thereby allowing each teacher who is awarded and returning to school a more enriched educational experience.
Fellowships are in the amount of up to $4,750 per year and are renewable for two additional consecutive years.

Emily James

Emily James

Ms. Hohaus, a fifth grade comprehensive gifted program teacher at Redfield Elementary School, says she intends to enrich her educational environment at SUSD through new skills and expertise that can only come through further education.

“This will allow me the opportunity to continue to grow my career within SUSD,” she said. “Over the coming years my goal is to become an instructional coach for gifted education and later an assistant principal and principal. I have a passion for not only education in general, but gifted education as well.”

Ms. Hohaus says she intends to make a difference through education.

“I believe the teaching strategies and knowledge that I have gained and will continue to gain will have the ability to impact not only the 25 students within my classroom, but also students across the district as I work with teachers to share the knowledge that I have received,” she said.

The old adage, “good teachers know how to bring out the best in students,” is a guiding philosophy for Ms. Hohaus.

“Our students grow to be part of our workforce and can greatly impact our community’s growth and representation,” she said.

“I am an example of just that. I have lived in Scottsdale all my life and am a product of SUSD. Due to the experiences that I had with my teachers, I chose to continue my education in Arizona and return to SUSD to teach. Without impactful teachers, our community will not continue to grow.”

Ms. James, a first grade teacher at Tavan Elementary School, says the fellowship award will help achieve the next level of knowledge she seeks without the weight of debt.

“I will gain so much new knowledge that will aid me in becoming a better teacher,” she said.

“After all that is said and done I am a teacher for the children and for the moment when their faces light up after they finally understand what I have been trying to teach them. Nothing compares to that light bulb moment when they finally realize how capable and smart they are.”

It’s those special moments of realization that keeps Ms. James dedicated to her craft, she says.

“Watching a child learn to read, do math and write is the most rewarding feeling I have ever experienced,” she pointed out. “Their bright smiles are what make each and every day worthwhile.”

Ms. James contends the fellowship award will make her a better teacher.

“Education degrees center around application and reflection,” she explained. “You learn something, you try it out and then you reflect on how to make it better.

Teachers can never stop learning and in my opinion when they do their ability to become better slowly fades.”

The catalog of knowledge one must obtain to effectively teach is an everlasting Rolodex of comprehension, Ms. James says.

“There are far too many techniques and methods to try,” she said. “I desire to be the teacher all of my future students deserve and need. In order to achieve that goal I need my master’s degree and hopefully one day I will also receive my doctorate degree.”

Both Ms. Hohaus and Ms. James say the Scottsdale Charros are making a difference in their lives — an effect they hope to have on others through the art of teaching at Scottsdale Schools.

“The Scottsdale Charros are just another part of what make Scottsdale one of the best places to live and work,” Ms. Hohaus said. “They help to support our community through various efforts including this scholarship. It is wonderful to have their support.”

For more information on The Charro Foundation Education Initiatives visit:

Independent Newsmedia Arizona Managing Editor Terrance Thornton can be contacted at

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