In our Voices of Veritas series, we’re introducing you to Veritas team members that help fulfill our vision of a world in which all persons with eating disorders have access to best-practice care. These everyday heroes ensure that patients, their families, and their communities of support receive the proper tools, resources, and education to support a successful journey to recovery.
In this month’s edition, we meet Katherine Toman, Education Coordinator at our Child, Adolescent & Adult Center in Richmond, VA.
Katherine Toman isn’t afraid of change. Though it can be unexpected and uncomfortable, she knows it’s the space where growth takes place – so she chooses to embrace it instead.
Katherine is an educator with a master’s degree in mathematics and significant experience as a middle school, high school, and college-level instructor. But, as much as she loves math, she loves people more. That’s why she chose to shift from a traditional classroom to the Veritas Collaborative team in Richmond as an education and vocation coordinator in 2017. The change offered a unique opportunity to use her professional skillset while more directly impacting those she comes in contact with.
“If given an opportunity and one-on-one interaction, you can figure out how a person learns,” says Katherine. “Over time, I love to figure out what works for each student, get to know them and their families, and encourage them in their journey to recovery by equipping them with the tools they need to help them succeed beyond the walls of Veritas.”
Katherine is a natural team player and always willing to pitch in where needed, but her heart lies in seeing change take place through education. In any given day, Katherine’s job is two-fold because she works with school-aged students as well as those over 18-years-old. For younger patients, she is responsible for visiting schools, recommending accommodations for 504 plans, following IEPs, and working with teachers individually to create plans for success. She even gets back to her classroom roots by teaching school system educators about eating disorders and serving as a resource for them. Her work with adult patients often involves helping with vocational training, budgeting, resume writing and job hunting.
“We begin each weekly leadership meeting with reminders of our mission, vision and core values, so I know that the Veritas mission and vision is alive and well. In fact, it’s what keeps me motivated each day, and it’s a welcome reminder to stay grounded and remember why we’re here.”
Originally from Maryland, Katherine lives with her rescue dog, Roxi. She, too, was an unexpected change that Katherine chose to embrace and love for the dog she was and the dog she could become.