Noyce Scholar Profile
Undergraduate major or graduate field of study: Mathematics
Subject area(s) and grade level teaching focus: Certified 5 – 12, currently teaching 7th and 8th grade students
Category of scholarship/fellowship:
Noyce Teaching Fellow
Name of Noyce institution:
Current academic or teaching status:
School and school district:
Morse School, Cambridge Public Schools
I grew up in Upstate NY and attended Hamilton College, where I majored in Mathematics and minored in Education. At Hamilton, I was able to work with students of all ages, through on and off campus volunteer programs and through my education classes. Through these experiences, I realized how gratifying it is to work with children. After graduating from college, I knew I wanted to work in a school setting. I found the perfect school in Dorchester, MA. For a year, I was an Americorps intern at a full-service school for low-income students. Along with 12 other interns and 8 master teachers, the children and the teachers put in 12-hour days. I taught math, reading skills, coached sports, cooked meals, and administered evening study. It was an absolutely amazing experience, and I felt that I needed to get more training in helping students not only learn math, but I also needed to gain resources about teaching students with diverse backgrounds. When I heard about the Noyce Program at BU, I knew that I had found the perfect opportunity. I was able to find the ideal setting—a program in which I would gain an even better understanding of teaching mathematics and one where I could take classes that focused on one population I was very interested in.
Why do you want to teach:
I have a passion for mathematics; I love the complexity of it and how there are so many ways to understand and see mathematics. I also really enjoy working with students. Therefore, in teaching, I can combine these two loves and impact the lives young people.
Teaching has always been something that I’ve wanted to do. As a child, I was so fortunate to have some exceptional teachers who instilled in me a love of learning and being challenged. My goal is to do the same. In middle school especially, it seems that students, for one reason or another, dislike mathematics. I hope to get them thinking about mathematics differently and really understand the importance of math in everyday life.
Describe a memorable teaching experience:
Throughout a typical teaching day, there are so many things that make a teacher happy. Sometimes the days are challenging, but there is always something that makes you smile. Whether it be a whole class that completes the homework, a reluctant student who is suddenly interested, or students who take on and understand difficult concepts. As a 2nd year teacher, one experience that is especially memorable is when my students from last year come back to my class to thank me, and let me know that they’ve enjoyed math more and that after my class, they see why it’s so important to learn math.
What does the Noyce program mean to you:
The Noyce Program has meant so much to me. It is a program that allows for me to really delve into exactly what I want to do—teach in an urban setting. In the classroom, it has given me the tools to succeed in my career. Financially, it has helped pay off my loans from my undergraduate studies. But, also, it has given me a great network of people that I can discuss my practice with. Last year, in my first year of teaching, this was so helpful. The program continues to be a great resource as it has workshops, learning experiences, and continued opportunities to interact with teachers in similar settings as myself.