Young alumna’s passion for education takes her to new heights.

January 31, 2019

Lindsey Gardner ’13 alumni headshotLindsey Gardner ’13 comes from a long line of Bruins ─ her parents, grandparents and great-grandmother all went to UCLA. But that Pac-12 rivalry never stopped her from becoming a Beaver. “When I visited Oregon State my junior year of high school, I was hooked,” she says. “I was destined to be a Beaver. It was the easiest decision I ever made.”

Gardner, who had dreamed of becoming a grade school teacher from the young age of six, knew that Oregon State would provide her with the training and real-life experience she needed to launch her career in education. “The day I graduated from Oregon State, I was prepared to take on a classroom,” she says. “Within a year, I was offered a full-time position teaching 4th grade ─ I did that for five wonderful years.”

Now in transition, Gardner is teaching English online to primary students in China while also building her business as a health coach. “If you’d asked me where I thought I’d be six years after moving that tassel, I would never have imagined my life would look like it does right now,” she says. “My passion is still teaching, but it’s come to include wellness. Right now, I’m working every day to combine the best of both worlds and create a life I love living.”

When she’s not health coaching or teaching online, Gardner volunteers for the OSU Alumni Association in Southern California, mentoring prospective students and connecting fellow alumni. “There are so many of us who have graduated and are now living our best lives in the ‘real world,’” Gardner says. “I still consider myself a newer alumna, but it feels so good to stay connected to the university in this way. Not to mention, college football is my one true love.”

When asked what advice she gives to the recent graduates she meets through the alumni association, she lit up. “Follow your passion! If there is a dream in your heart, chase it.” she says. “You are in control of your life. So take that power and create the life of your dreams.”