Noyce Scholar Profile
Undergraduate major or graduate field of study: Secondary Education
Subject area(s) and grade level teaching focus: Biology
Category of scholarship/fellowship:
Fifth year or post-baccalaureate Noyce scholar
Name of Noyce institution:
Arizona State University/STARR Noyce
Current academic or teaching status:
1st year teaching
School and school district:
Hamilton High School, Chandler (AZ) Unified School District
Ever since I was young, I have always enjoyed science. Growing up in San Diego allowed many avenues for me to learn about nature and animals. After moving to Arizona when I was 9 years old, that love of science never died. I graduated from Arizona State University in 2008 with a B.S. in Biology and a B.A. in Psychology. After graduating, I worked in a laboratory with the goal of advancing into research. I realized, however, that research was not what I wanted to do forever. The most enjoyable aspect of my job was teaching the undergraduates about our research. It was then that I realized I wanted to become a teacher! The STARR Noyce scholarship funded my pursuit into education, where I earned a M.Ed. in Secondary Education, and am now teaching 9th grade Honors Biology in Chandler, Arizona!
Why do you want to teach:
Teaching has allowed me to share my love of science! Too often, students have a preconceived notion that science is hard and boring and that they won’t like it. It has been my job now to change those ideas in their minds. Teaching is fun and exciting, and each day brings something new and different. There is nothing like that moment when students really get a concept, and you can see the confidence and understanding in their faces.
Describe a memorable teaching experience:
The most important lessons are those when students can take something personally away from the material. When I was student teaching, we had just covered a unit in genetics. As a final project, each student created a family tree where they traced genetic diseases and other health-related characteristics in their family. Several students in the class were shocked to see the amount of diseases in their families, and the class had a discussion about how to prevent them from continuing to occur. Many students saw a high number of diabetics in their family, and vowed to exercise, eat right, and keep in shape to prevent it from happening to them. It was an amazing experience to see these kids take an interest in their family and their family’s health.
What does the Noyce program mean to you:
The Noyce program has given me everything I have today. Without it, I would not have my M.Ed., my current teaching job, or my love of teaching! When I began thinking that I wanted to be a teacher, I’m not sure that I would’ve ever been able to do so without this program. Graduate school is incredibly expensive, especially during student teaching when there is no time to hold an outside job. Noyce provided for my education, my knowledge, and my future.