; Tara Karels
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Tara Karels


[...] throughout my early years and into high school, I had no intention of working in any aspect of healthcare. [...] I have kept my workshops here in North America.

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									                                                                                                Featured Educator

                                                                          Tara Karels
      When the International Journal of    know my passion is teaching. I love the         them with evidence-based information.
Childbirth Education contacted me to       group dynamics and sharing in such an                 It was at that first ICEA workshop
write an article about my experiences      important time in family’s lives.               in 1998 that I knew I wanted to teach
in childbirth education, I was thrilled!         My first experience with ICEA was         not only childbirth classes, but also one
I have been teaching childbirth classes    in 1998. I was just starting to teach for       day be a faculty for ICEA. I knew that
for 11 years. I am an ICEA certified       my hospital and they sent me to the             I loved teaching in a group setting and
childbirth educator, an ICEA certified     Basic Training for the Childbirth Educa-        dreamed of one day traveling to cities
doula, and an ICEA approved trainer.       tor workshop. I had a great time at that        across the United States teaching the
I am also a mom to three beautiful         workshop. I left armed with everything          workshops for ICEA. In 2006, I was
children ages 12, 10, and 8. Like many,    I needed to get started teaching.               ready to apply for a faculty position,
my journey to becoming a childbirth        Six years later, I attended the same            but ICEA had new ideas to bring the
educator was inspired by life events.      workshop and had an entirely different          workshops to more communities. So,
In fact, throughout my early years and     experience. This time, I learned new            in 2007, I attended the first “Educating
into high school, I had no intention of    ideas to spice up my classes and I was          the Educator” training in St. Charles,
working in any aspect of healthcare.       able to network with other educators            Illinois at Convention that year. I
It was an unplanned pregnancy at age       and glean new ideas for teaching. The           became certified as an ICEA Approved
17 that changed my life. The nurses’       workshop content was the same. It was           Trainer with the flexibility to present
support was tremendous through my          where I was in my professional journey          the workshop anywhere in the world!
labor, delivery, and postpartum as I       that affected what I could take from            With the guidance of Marilyn Hildreth,
placed my baby for adoption. I thought     each experience.                                I did just that. In January of 2008, Mar-
birth was the most amazing experience!           I chose certification through ICEA        ilyn and I traveled around the world to
Seven years later, I had graduated from    for two primary reasons. I felt ICEA’s          Doha, Qatar to present both the ICEA
nursing school and gained some experi-     certification program was more com-             Childbirth and ICEA Doula workshops.
ence working in a hospital when I took     plete than any other organization in            It was an amazing experience. Since
my first job as a labor and delivery       preparing you to teach and supporting           then, I have kept my 
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