After growing up in a family that loved music, Jenny (Camp) Clark (B.A. ’06) is now an experienced music teacher and is raising a family of her own with her husband, Evan Clark (B.A. ’06). Both of the Clarks are actively involved in supporting the school they hope their children will attend one day. Jenny has volunteered as a counselor at Florida College Texas Camp, and Evan serves on the board of the North Texas chapter of The Hutchinson Bell.
“I would hope that we would be blessed with having any or all of our children attend Florida College,” Jenny said.
Jenny and all three of her siblings attended Florida College and were involved in the music department. Each of the siblings have served as music educators, and three out of the four received their bachelor’s degrees in music from Florida College.
“All of us benefitted so much from being in the music program because we were a musical family,” Jenny said. “We loved music growing up, but we were homeschooled, so we didn’t necessarily have all of the opportunities to perform for large audiences.”
At Florida College, Jenny had the opportunity to perform in Hutchinson Auditorium as a member of the chorus and the chamber ensemble as well as in the annual musical production. In addition to being involved in the extracurricular programs offered by the fine arts department, Jenny spent her four years on campus working hard to earn a bachelor’s degree in music. Although she struggled with some of the core music classes, like Music Theory, she received the help she needed from professors who cared about her success.
“I struggled a lot with some of my core classes, but I had so much help from Mr. Moore and other professors,” Jenny said. “Having the support and encouragement of the professors at Florida College made a huge impact.”
Jenny’s experience with supportive professors from Florida College inspired her to teach her music students with the same patience and care. After graduating with her music degree, Jenny moved to Texas with her husband and completed an alternative certification program to be able to teach. Shortly after that, she was hired at Castleberry Elementary in River Oaks, Texas.
“I only had one interview, and it ended up being the district I stayed in my whole teaching career,” Jenny said. “I feel like the Lord really blessed me in that way.”
While she was teaching at Castleberry Elementary, Jenny was honored with the Bayard H. Friedman Hero Award in 2009 by the Fort Worth Symphony Orchestra and the Score a Goal in the Classroom School Incentive Program for being the most outstanding music teacher in North Texas. She was also named the Teacher of the Year at Castleberry Elementary at the end of her seven years of teaching.
In 2014, Jenny left her teaching career to be a stay-at-home mom with her first daughter, Eleanor, and she is expecting a second child in January 2017. Although she loves being at home with her daughter, Jenny hopes to return to teaching music someday.
“During this season of life, this is where I’m meant to be,” Jenny said. “But I would love to return to teaching again. I know I have a passion for it just because I know it’s making a difference in children’s lives and it’s a way for me to represent the Lord.”
Jenny’s love for God and music help her to shine her light as both a mother and a music teacher.