Noyce Scholar Profile
Undergraduate major or graduate field of study: Mathematics
Subject area(s) and grade level teaching focus: 7th-12th grade mathematics
Category of scholarship/fellowship:
Fifth year or post-baccalaureate Noyce scholar
Name of Noyce institution:
California State University Northridge
Current academic or teaching status:
1st year credential student, 1st semester student teaching, 2 years subsitute teaching experience
School and school district:
San Fernando Middle School, Valle Lindo School District, El Monte Union High School District
I was born in Michoacan, Mexico. My mother and father and I immigrated to this country in 1988, and since then have lived in El Monte in the San Gabriel Valley. I grew up in a very warm family where education was always a priority. I graduated from Mountain View High School as Valedictorian and participated in sports and the marching band. Immediately after graduation, I attended UCLA where I would major in mathematics and graduate with a Bachelors of Science in 2007. Since graduation from UCLA, I moved back to El Monte where coaching and teaching would become an intricate part of my life. I became a substitute teacher short after college, having taught preschool to 12th grade levels. I coached the Mountain View High School’s boys soccer team to 2 CIF titles in the past 3 years as well as leading the Mountain View track and field program as head coach for 3 years. I am still employed as a substitute teacher and coach, but I am taking a few months off to student teach and finish my single subject credential. I have also stayed active with sports as a team manager for CSUN’s Men’s Division 1 Soccer Team.
Why do you want to teach:
I have realized that low income communities like El Monte make it hard for a student to obtain a well-deserved education. Having been able to see this environment not just as a student, but as a teacher, has led me to understand a history where the socioeconomic status of such communities presents challenges to students. I want to help bring change to these communities. My experience as a substitute teacher and as a coach has inspired me to become a full-time math teacher. These students relate to me, I understand them, and what better way of giving back, than by motivating them to learn mathematics, and giving them the tools to succeed. I will endeavor to inspire my students, instill in them a sense of self-esteem, relate their educational experience with their culture and their socio-economic status, fight for my students, respect and treat them as my equals.
Describe a memorable teaching experience:
Within the middle schools where I teach, I have met many troubled students and have conversed with them about their home and socioeconomic situations. The majority of them have no means of motivation or support to want to succeed in the classroom, let alone continue their education after high school. I recall a student by the name of Guillermo, whose family was deeply rooted in the local El Monte Flores gang. His dad was in jail for criminal activity, and his mother was working to support her entire family. Guillermo’s circumstances do not allow him to grow educationally and hinder him from having a successful future. Many students in this community are like Guillermo. Their circumstances at home and their reputation create fear among teachers who see no potential in them, when it is quite the contrary. From my experience with Guillermo, I realized that he was very intelligent, especially in mathematics. I pushed him to do work with motivation and respect so that it even caught the attention of the assistant principal. He was surprised about the amount of work that Guillermo had completed in only a week under my instruction. Guillermo was proof to me that all students have an immense amount of potential and that teachers can become an intricate part of unleashing it.
What does the Noyce program mean to you:
The Noyce program has allowed my passion for education to grow even more. Within the program, my knowledge of teaching strategies has grown every week. The funding has given me the time and security to be able to continue expanding my knowledge of teaching and education. I am extremely proud to be part of the Noyce Program and will be forever grateful to have been selected for it.