The Sage Publication is the student news site of Sage Creek High School in Carlsbad, CA

The Sage

The Sage Publication is the student news site of Sage Creek High School in Carlsbad, CA

The Sage

The Sage Publication is the student news site of Sage Creek High School in Carlsbad, CA

The Sage

Jennifer Hatter: The Classified Staff Member Who Wears Many Hats

Amanda Klein
Jennifer Hatter sits at her desk in the office where she works as the administrative assistant to assistant principal Bill Lord, as well as a student data technician and an office assistant. She is the first ever Classified Staff Member of the Year for Sage Creek and remains a positive influence for the school in all circumstances.

The crowd in the Bobcat Arena quiets down as vice principal Jesse Schuveiller reads through comments about somebody. Murmurs spread through the crowd as people try to guess who the staff member is. Schuveiller begins to read out some staff comments about the winner.

“Her commitment to Sage Creek is unwavering … she’s professional, friendly and highly motivated … she’s the mama bear of our campus.”

Schuveiller then reveals that Jennifer Hatter is the winner of the first-ever classified staff member of the year.

For those that don’t know, a classified staff member is anyone who works on a school campus but isn’t a credentialed staff member. These positions include our campus aides, kitchen staff, the librarian and a lot of the administrative staff. Sage Creek has given out awards for being teacher of the year in the past, but this was the first year that the school honored a classified staff member, ensuring their hard work doesn’t go unnoticed.

Hatter is currently the administrative assistant to vice principal Bill Lord, but she has been working in the Carlsbad Unified School District (CUSD) since 2010. She began working at Magnolia Elementary School as an office assistant and then later moved to Pacific Rim Elementary School. On top of being an administrative assistant to Lord, she has also been a student data technician and office assistant while on the Sage Creek campus.

Beyond her work in the school district, she has been a successful photographer and a dedicated mother to her son, Grayson “Gray” Hatter, who is a junior at Sage Creek, and her daughter, who is in college.

Amanda Klein
Mrs. Hatter poses outside of the office where she works hard everyday to make our school a better place. Hatter received the Classified Staff Member of the Year Award at the recognition assembly on May 23, 2018 for all the effort she has put in to improving our school.

Hatter attended Louisiana State University for her undergraduate degree and then later Brooks Institute of Photography in Santa Barbara for her postgraduate. She met her husband of 22 years during her time at Brooks, who is also a photographer. They later moved back to Louisiana and started their own business after graduating.

“[My photography] was successful, I was super lucky,” Hatter explained.

Being successful didn’t come without a lot of hard work, and that hard work didn’t come without creating issues. Hatter’s workload was more than insane, to say the least.

“I was doing about 52 weddings a year and a ton of portraits,” Hatter said.

That’s about one wedding a week, which is quite intensive considering how much effort goes into both taking, editing and sending photos to the respective bride and groom. The rest of her free time would obviously be taken up by the portraits. Leaving little time for her to be the mother she wanted to be to her children.

“I looked around, and my kids were having nannies a lot … and I just felt it was the profession that wasn’t working for me as a young mom,” Hatter recounted.

Luckily, as the digital world grew, so did her husband’s career in architectural photography. As frequent airplane travel for work became more economically feasible, her husband was able to get more and more work. The new work allowed her and her husband to book one more year of weddings in Louisiana and then move to California. Hatter left behind photography and began to search for a job that lined up with the kids’ schedule.

“When you’re a young mom and the kids are your everything, it was hard to say goodbye every morning,” Hatter said.

Hatter quickly began to look for work in her new home and started as a substitute teacher in CUSD. She used this position as a jumping point into the administration of schools. She did have to work her way up as an office assistant to administrative assistant — the position she’s been in at Sage Creek for three years.

She began at Sage Creek because she found an opening for the position and it was the school Gray was entering as a freshman.

“I saw the opportunity, and I sort of followed [Gray] here,” Hatter explained.

Besides her desire to be close to her son, she loves being an administrative assistant. She enjoys being in the hub of everything and getting to help out around campus. She also appreciates the entire administrative team at Sage Creek.

“It’s nice to assist [the administration] and the organization and the running of the school,” Hatter said.

It’s been her attitude of humility and love for not only Sage Creek, but working in the school district that won her the award itself. She feels as though working at Sage Creek has been the, “best job ever.” To be the first-ever winner of classified staff of the year has been more than exciting to Hatter.

“My heart was beating out of my chest … what an honor,” Hatter remembered.

She has just been genuinely glad to have been considered for the award among all of the other great staff members.

Despite all of her great work here on campus, her first and foremost priority has been to be a mother. Gray himself was pleasantly surprised his mom won, and he enjoyed the opportunity he got to sit next to her at the pep rally as she won.

“It was really cool and she deserved it,” Gray explained.

Funnily enough Gray didn’t even think of his mom for the award, not because of the quality of her work, but rather because he was just thinking that’s just what she does as a mom every day. However, when Schuveiller revealed that the winner was like a mom to the entire campus, Gray knew that his mom had won.

“I could tell it meant a lot to her and she was well deserving of it,” Gray felt.

Gray gave proof that Hatter had been successful in her goal of being a mom and administrative staff member.

“I love her and she’s an awesome mom and an awesome staff member here at Sage Creek and I’m very proud of her,” Gray said.

Hatter is bound to keep up the fantastic work next year and for years to come here at Sage Creek. Her dedication shines through on her bright smile and genuinely caring personality. Maybe she will win again next year, but who knows, in her words: “there are so many good people here.”

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