Like father, like daughter
Dominique Preudhomme Martin is the third child in a family of seven children. She became like a second mom to her two younger brothers and taught them both to read before they went to kindergarten.
Needless to say, the seeds of her future teaching career were planted early. So was the value of service.
Dominique's mother was a nurse; both of her grandmothers were nurses. Her father was a high school teacher in a public school and at Bishop McGuinness Catholic High School in Kernersville, where Dominique was a student in her own father’s classroom.
“He was a great teacher,” Dominique laughed. “He showed us that, even though teachers may not get as much respect or as much money as other professions, it really is rewarding.”
Today, Dominique teaches 3rd grade at Blessed Sacrament School in Burlington, where she attended school as a child. And like her father, Dominique is now teaching her own child, a son in the 3rd grade.
The nostalgia doesn’t end there; she also teaches alongside some of her former teachers.
“It’s really cool that my old teachers are working with me,” Dominique said. “My principal right now was my social studies teacher, and so whenever she calls me to her office I am like, ‘Oh, no! What did I do?’”
Dominique loved attending school at Blessed Sacrament. Everyone knew everyone, and the academics were rigorous, but she remains impressed by what she didn’t realize she was learning.
“They really taught you so much: so many social skills, so many academic skills, study skills that you didn't even know you have,” Dominique said.
That made it easy to transfer to high school at Bishop McGuinness. “I didn’t have to struggle to get As; it was just easy because of the rigor that came from BSS.”
That’s the same experience Dominique wants her own students to have.
“It does make me want to give them everything I can — and even just talk to them about life and preparing them for college and adulthood,” Dominique said. “I need to do that for my students because that’s what was given to me.”
The Catholic environment at Blessed Sacrament School, as well as its diversity, are important to Dominique.
On the Day of the Dead, or All Souls Day, students set up a giant altar with lights, artwork and the names of their loved ones. An altar of flowers graced the hallway on the feast of Our Lady of Guadalupe. During the school’s Week of Giving, students from all grades brought in handmade treats, placemats, ornaments and other items to be delivered with Meals on Wheels and to neighbors in the community.
“I love that the community gets to see what we’re doing as well, and I love that the kids are so excited to give treat bags to the police department or around downtown Burlington,” Dominique said. “It’s making our students more caring humans. I love what we do!”
Above: Dominique Preudhomme Martin with her father, Patrick Preudhomme, Sr.