Noyce Scholar Profile
Undergraduate major or graduate field of study: Psychology
Subject area(s) and grade level teaching focus: High School General Science
Category of scholarship/fellowship:
Fifth year or post-baccalaureate Noyce scholar
Name of Noyce institution:
UW Oshkosh, ACT! Program
Current academic or teaching status:
Seeking my first teaching job.
School and school district:
Madison, WI job market
I studied Chemical Engineering for two years before changing majors, eventually earning a Bachelor’s Degree in Psychology. I used my degree, in a variety of settings, to provide direct-care services to disadvantaged teens. I worked in several group homes, then got a job with a program that hired people like myself to teach teens to construct homes. My family relocated, and I found work in construction, but soon missed working with young people. I have always loved Science, and had often thought about pursuing Teaching as a career. The Noyce Scholarship gave me that opportunity.
Why do you want to teach:
I love science. I love working with teens.
I feel like there are a lot of young people out there who need a teacher to believes in them. I know how to show young people that I care. I know how to help them believe in their own ability. And, what better forum than the exciting and challenging fields of Science to give kids the chance to succeed.
Describe a memorable teaching experience:
During my student teaching experience, I worked with a young woman who was living on her own, working to pay bills, and had a toddler at home. The pressures in her life were immense, and she came to school knowing that it would be easier to simply give up; to not care. She did not believer in herself. I reminded her again and again that she could do it; that she was brighter than she gave herself credit for. I told that I was available to help her work through the homework. With the encouragement of a few other adults in her life, she did seek out that help, and began to show up regularly after school to get the help she needed. Slowly, her confidence did build. She was seeing her grades improve. Her participation in class improved, and her overall attitude became much more positive. She began to develop an actual interest in Science. Most importantly, though, she learned that there are people who care, and that it is safe for her to believe in her own ability.
What does the Noyce program mean to you:
My wife and I started our family at a young age. With great difficulty, we have both managed to continue to advance our educations while working and raising our kids. I have always had a desire to teach. When I stumbled upon a University program designed to help working adults become teachers, I quickly enrolled. After two years of academic classes, it was time for me to Student Teach. Despite warnings from my advisors that it is nearly impossible to work while Student Teaching, I found a night job, so that I could continue to pay my bills. I only lasted six weeks. My advisors were right, and my financial needs forced me to give up Student Teaching. When I found out about the Noyce Scholarships, my hopes were rekindled. I applied, and was accepted. In June, thanks to Noyce, I finished my Student Teaching, and have now entered the Teaching job market.