Noyce Scholar Profile
Undergraduate major or graduate field of study: Mathematics
Subject area(s) and grade level teaching focus: High School Math
Category of scholarship/fellowship:
Name of Noyce institution:
University of Texas at Arlington
Current academic or teaching status:
School and school district:
During my last two years of high school, I interned and assisted two elementary school teachers through a program called “Ready, Set, Teach.” I also tutored two elementary school students in reading and writing and a middle school student in math after working at my part-time job during high school. From 2010 to 2012, I worked as a tutor at “Yes I Can Learning Center,” where I assisted students with their homework assignments and helped them one-on-one with subjects they struggled with. Currently, I work as a personal tutor thanks to parents and teachers who recommended me. I mainly focus reading, writing, and mathematics and help them improve on their comprehension and applications. Although I only have 5 students at the moment, that’s all I can handle with 18 hours of school.
Why do you want to teach:
Initially, the reason I want to teach is because I want to make a difference in others’ lives, but almost every job does that. However, I feel that teachers make the greatest difference because we are the ones who influence and guide the future generations. My teachers are a part of who I am and who we are today. I don’t like or understand how teachers are disregarded as low professions. I don’t think people realize how important teachers are when it comes to our future. Although teachers may be overlooked and poorly paid, it is what I want and am called to do. As crazy as this sounds but the only talent that I know that I have is to teach. Mathematics have always been one of my strengths in school and through my experiences as a TA, catechist, tutor and peer, I discovered that I have the gift of teaching. My career couldn’t be clearer. Why not do something I love with something that I’m good at and get paid for it?
I am ready to take on the challenge regardless of the pay and hardships because teaching is what I love and enjoy. I want to help students understand and enjoy math as I do. I also want to help them see that they’re capable of doing math and that it isn’t as hard as they think. I love to see students grow and to witness the “light bulb” moments they have when they finally understand something they didn’t before. Teaching is such a humbling and selfless job, but somehow I end up benefiting too.
Describe a memorable teaching experience:
During the summer of 2009, a few of my friends and I were given the opportunity to go on a mission trip to Vietnam and Cambodia for a month. It was truly humbling to serve the poor and to see the lifestyles and origins of my parents before they migrated to America. I’ve always heard of the poverty in third world countries, but to experience it first hand was completely heart-breaking and eye opening. Throughout the trip, we made several stops at schools to visit and teach students. Regardless of the distance, poor environment, and limited supplies, they still appreciated the little education they received, which made me realize how truly blessed we are in America and how we take advantage of our education.
What does the Noyce program mean to you:
The Noyce scholarship saved me and my family tremendously! I am one of six children and among the six of us, three are in college. Although we receive financial aid, it’s not enough. My parents are small business owners, but it is not doing well at the moment, so they struggle to pay for our education. I know that they want us to have an education and to pursue our careers, so they continue to support us. My two older sisters and I try to help our parents by working part time jobs and helping around the house. Not only are they supporting us but they’re also supporting my aunt and my cousins who recently moved to America. In addition to our tuition, the business and the two houses, we now have to find a way to pay off my grandma’s medical bill because she was in the hospital for a week due to a stroke. Although life may be hard for my family, we try to make the best of it. One reason why I want to finish my education and get my degree is so that I can start teaching and help support my family financially.