Glenda Gerde is an experienced educator with a passion for student-focused collaboration, a strong work ethic, and a good sense of humor. As an educator, Glenda has been fortunate enough to practice her profession, as well as share her experience. Most recently, Glenda was presented with the opportunity to expand her professional career overseas in Istanbul, Turkey. While there, Glenda served as Dean of Students at SAC SEV American College, a new 21st Century high school.
SAC SEV American College dates back to the 1800’s and is among the best high schools in Turkey. As Dean of Students, Glenda was responsible not only for direct supervision and support for the students, but also for drafting and implementing the growing of the new school through well-crafted systems and procedures. During her first week of being in Turkey, Glenda, along with several other foreign educators new to SAC SEV American College team, were taken on a 3 day orientation by their headmaster. Glenda and her fellow colleagues were given the opportunity to tour the area in between their professional development events. Almost immediately, Glenda grew fond of her new home and the seemingly endless avenues to explore and study.
Within her first month of entering Turkey, Glenda was off to a student orientation which consisted of a two day retreat at a ski resort, Kartepe. During the retreat, Glenda enjoyed spending her time getting know the students and faculty while exploring the mountains of her new home.
Glenda’s time spent in Turkey was rewarding in more ways than one. Aside from the outstanding experiences that she shared with the SAC Team, Glenda found that this opportunity also awarded her the ability to travel all over Europe. In the past year alone, Glenda has been fortunate enough to visit seven countries. Be it the glorious touring of Istanbul’s shops and historical areas, fado music she was mesmerized by in Portugal, viewing magnificent art in 5 Italian cities, her evening attending Matthew Perry’s new play in London, practicing her French during two trips to Paris and the South of France, the countless drama club rehearsals in Istanbul, her day spent touring London with her British cousin, or her time enjoying talking with people from many nationalities, , Glenda accredits all of these once in a lifetime experiences to the International School Services and Headmaster Whitman Shepard for providing her with the opportunity to serve at SAC SEV American College.
Glenda had dreamed of working overseas for some time, and was ecstatic to gain an adventure that few people attempt when older. She packed 13 suitcases, an adorable rescue dog named Mr. Happy, a guitar and a piano keyboard to go to a country she had never seen but in Rick Steves you tube videos. She enjoyed playing her guitar on the worship team of Union Church of Istanbul, smiling at the adventure of putting on her hiking boots that defied cobblestones, slinging her guitar on her back, catching a dolmus (mini bus), then boarding the Marmaray that went under the Bosphorous Strait, then catching the metro, then going up 5 escalators to find herself on Istiklal Street an hour later, in snow or rain or shine, to sing and play in her church. A decaf latte at Starbucks and a browse through the vast array of shopping stores on Istiklal was a favorite pastime after Sunday church.