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Terri Piazza, More than a Teacher

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Piazza teaches in front of her public speaking class using the book as an example.

Piazza teaches in front of her public speaking class using the book as an example.

Piazza teaches in front of her public speaking class using the book as an example.

Nikayla Kussatz, Health Editor

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While spreading her joy throughout the country, teacher, Terri Piazza’s goal since she started teaching is to watch her students succeed.

Piazza grew up in Fort Smith, AK until she moved to Springfield, MO to attend Missouri State University as a theatre major. After completing her schooling she decided to move to New York City to work in the theatre industry.

“Ever since I was little, I wanted to be a professional actress so I decided to move to NY to fulfill my dreams,” said Piazza.

I am a firm believer that communication is a huge help for students and their future careers and I love seeing each and every one grow and succeed throughout their course in my classes.”

— Terri Piazza

In order to pay for her living expenses, Piazza worked for HBO’s marketing and also in a law firm.

Piazza was involved in off off Broadway for nine years where she met her husband, Tony Piazza. They were both cast in the same play and were soon married in NY.

After living in NY for nine years, the couple decided to move to San Diego, CA so Tony could finish his masters degree.

While in CA, the Piazzas had their first child, Alex. Then after Tony finished his masters degree they decided to move closer to family.

The family packed their things and moved to Overland Park, KS where they had their second child, Emma. Terri mainly stayed home to raise her children and worked part time along with Tony.

Piazza enjoys seeing students grow in her class.

“During this time there were no full time positions for theatre teachers until Iola gave us an opportunity,” said Piazza.

The family packed once again and moved to Iola, KS where Tony taught full time. Terri received her graduates degree for teaching at Pittsburg State University then began teaching here in 2000.

The Piazzas have lived and taught in Iola for almost 19 years and love teaching and directing the plays.

“My favorite part about teaching is connecting with the students. Being a public speaking teacher really helps me get to know about my students,” said Piazza. “I am a firm believer that communication is a huge help for students and their future careers and I love seeing each and every one grow and succeed throughout their course in my classes.”

If Piazza could live anywhere she would choose to live close to her children.

“I don’t want to sound cliche but my family will always the most important thing to me and I will always be there for them,” said Piazza.

Piazza teaches Public Speaking, Interpersonal Communication, Mass Communication, Reporting, Theatre Appreciation, Improvisation and Introduction to Film and also directs plays along with her husband.

“I encourage every student to take a communication class because being able to successfully communicate with others will help so much in the long run.”

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Terri Piazza, More than a Teacher