Getting to Know Bennett's Consultants: Introducing Laura Weinkle
Laura Weinkle’s face lights up when I ask her what her favorite part of working with Bennett’s client families is, and her response is instant: “My favorite part of the job is when a family falls in love with a school that is a good fit or when I know that I have helped give a family some peace of mind in the midst of their relocation! As consultants, we love to help people.”
Laura has worked for Bennett International for the past ten years as a consultant, a Global Team Lead, a consultant recruiter, and SEN (Special Education Needs) supervisor. She started her career in reporting and editing and then moved on to management and Human Resources at Federated Department Stores. In that role, she was in charge of executive training for newly recruited managers, the buying team, and store management at 68 Florida store locations.
Once Laura became a mother, she left retail and moved into the classroom as a volunteer at the elementary school level. She did such a great job as a volunteer that the school wanted to keep her on as a full-time faculty member. That led to certification and teaching Kindergarten – third grade for several years. Over time, Laura moved from the classroom to consulting for School Choice International, which later became part of Bennett.
In the midst of becoming certified as a teacher and working in the classroom, Laura also dedicated herself to making sure that her son Max, who had been diagnosed with autism, was in the right educational setting. This was twenty-five years ago when educating children with autism was not a priority in public or private schools, and Laura’s quest for a good environment for him was a challenging one. Her solution was to start her own ABA (Applied Behavioral Analysis) school for Max and other students like him.
Laura’s roles as a reporter/editor, a corporate trainer, an educator, and the mother of two adult sons have given her the perfect skill set for the many hats she wears at Bennett, and it’s easy to see why the families and companies who come to Bennett for assistance with a move to an unfamiliar location love to work with Laura. She approaches each family and each challenge with empathy and experience. Laura’s best piece of advice to families is: “Focus on what’s best for your child – put your children first. With that in mind, you can’t go wrong!”
Laura's professional focus encompasses much of the Western Hemisphere, and on any given day, one might find her working directly with a family who is relocating to West Palm Beach in Florida, guiding one of the consultants on her team through a difficult school search in Toronto, or interviewing a new consultant for Latin America relocations. When asked where she would spend a sabbatical year if ever offered the opportunity, she doesn’t hesitate; “Tuscany!” she says, and her face lights up again.
By Erin Brady & Annemiek Young
Laura Weinkle is a Global Team Lead with Bennett International, based in South Florida and supporting a consultant team in the U.S. and Latin America. She is also Director of Recruitment and conducts training for education consultants new to Bennett. Prior to teaching in elementary and middle school, Laura was in Human Resources in training and development. A native of South Florida, Laura has been a tireless advocate for her own special needs son and has been active in her community, dedicated to helping other Special Needs families identify appropriate education options and resources for their children.
Laura attended Tulane University and received her B.A. in Communications. She currently serves on the Constituency Board for the University of Miami CARD (Center for Autism and Related Disabilities) and recently earned membership in the Independent Educational Consultants Association (IECA).
To read more about our top-flight team of consultants, please see here.
Bennett International Education Consultancy works directly with hundreds of families each year across the globe. We support families by helping them make informed decisions about the best-fit schools for their children; with our guidance, they secure placement in preschools, private day schools, public/state schools, boarding schools, colleges & universities, including schools with particular programs, such as special needs support.