Cindi Click’s (’24) return to teaching showcases her faith and perseverance as she balanced school, family, and clinicals, while achieving academic excellence.

This story highlights one of Concordia’s uncommon May 2024 graduates. Faculty and staff submit candidates for consideration. Stories are posted in the days leading up to commencement. View more uncommon graduates here.

Cindi Click’s path back to the classroom has been a testament to faith, perseverance, and the pursuit of her passion for teaching. After stepping away from education to focus on family, Cindi found herself drawn back to the profession she loves. Now, as she nears the completion of her Master of Science in Curriculum & Instruction with Teacher Certification in Elementary Education at CUAA, she reflects on her journey, challenges, and the unwavering support of her family and educators.

Finding Her Way Back

About 10 years ago, Cindi was working in Hawaii as a teacher, but once her two-year contract was up, she knew she was not supposed to stay. She moved back to California where she met her husband. They moved to a few other states before ending up in Michigan three years ago. “I had four kids in three to four years, so I had to step away from teaching and care for them,” Cindi recalls. “I wasn’t sure when or if I would get the chance to teach again.”

Her decision to return to teaching wasn’t a sudden revelation, but rather a gradual realization. “My youngest boys are starting kindergarten soon, and I was thinking about jobs that would allow me to be home with them and flexible with my husband’s job as a pastor,” Cindi said. “I decided I wanted to sub at my kids’ school, but the state of Michigan does not accept my degree, so I realized that I would have to go back to school.”

The next step? Finding a college that would accept her degree.

Where to find that university? Facebook.

After feeling discouraged and frustrated in her search for a university that would accept her current degree and help her achieve Michigan Teaching Certification, Cindi found hope while scrolling through Facebook. Amidst the sea of posts, an ad for Concordia University Ann Arbor popped up. Cindi already had some familiarity with CUAA through a friend’s sister who had played softball there. Intrigued, she decided to delve deeper into what CUAA had to offer.

“The personal touch I received in my email interactions with CUAA staff stood out compared to the other universities I was talking too,” she explains. “They genuinely cared about me, and that mattered.”

I knew this is where the Lord wanted me to be, and the university I was supposed to attend.

Cindi Click

Balancing Act: School, Family, and More

Returning to school while being a full-time mom of four, a pastor’s wife and the extra obligations was not without its challenges. “Dealing with mom guilt and saying no to things has been tough,” she admits.

The key to Cindi’s success has been her disciplined approach to time management. Getting ahead on assignments and making the most of weekends were crucial for her.

One of Cindi’s biggest challenges was finding time for her clinicals. With young children to care for, she had to carefully plan out her schedule. This meant arranging preschool or daycare for her kids so she could focus on her clinicals. Fortunately, her husband’s availability on Fridays allowed her to dedicate the entire day to her clinical work. It was a juggling act, but with strategic planning and support from her family, Cindi managed to balance her responsibilities effectively.

Support System: Family and CUAA

Cindi’s family has been her rock throughout her educational journey. “My husband has been my number one cheerleader,” she said. “And my kids think it’s cool that Mom’s back in school.” Even her parents and in-laws have been supportive. If she ever needed help, she knew she could call on her in-laws.

Beyond her family, CUAA’s supportive environment has played a significant role. The feedback she gets from her professors have been helpful and helped her grow as a future teacher. “Even though all the classes have been online, I feel like I have connected with some of my fellow peers, and it has been great to encouragement from them especially since we all are going through the same thing,” Cindi, explained.

Recognizing Excellence

Cindi’s dedication and hard work were recently recognized as she is the recipient of the Academic Excellence in Elementary Education award. “I cried when I saw the email and immediately screenshotted it and sent it to my husband,” she, recalls. “I was very honored and humbled especially since I was not expecting anything.”

During her time at CUAA, Cindi achieved some of her highest grades ever. This accomplishment was especially meaningful considering her roles as a busy mom and wife. Seeing her hard work reflected in her grades was incredibly encouraging, reaffirming her ability to manage multiple responsibilities effectively.

Future: Teacher of Residence

The biggest prayer that she had was to work at the school her children attend. Her prayer was answered on April 1, and she was hired as a teacher of residence at Triumph Academy.

I feel like God has brought me back full circle and the joy back to me. Coming back as a mom now, I am seeing all these other aspects of teaching which I think really solidifies my new call to be a teacher.

Cindi Click

As she walks across the stage this Sunday, Cindi hopes to inspire not only her own children but also other mothers. Regardless of who you are or what stage of life you’re in, it’s never too late to pursue your dreams and turn them into reality.

Want in?

Concordia’s Teacher Certification Program is the perfect fit for those who currently hold a bachelor’s degree in any subject area but wish to move into the world of education. Our collaborative program allows you to earn both a master’s degree and Teacher Certification online through convenient eight-week, self-paced courses.

—This story is written by Keara Chaperon, Social Media Manager for Concordia University Ann Arbor and Concordia University Wisconsin. She may be reached at