Noyce Scholar Profile
Undergraduate major or graduate field of study: Biology
Subject area(s) and grade level teaching focus: Secondary Education
Category of scholarship/fellowship:
Name of Noyce institution:
University of Northern Colorado
Current academic or teaching status:
School and school district:
Student teaching at D'Evelyn Jr/Sr High School
I grew up in the Denver metro area of Colorado and attended school in Centennial. My interest in education began when I was in high school and involved in a variety of volunteer opportunities to tutor or mentor younger students from difficult home lives. I decided to go to the University of Northern Colorado based on a music scholarship I was awarded, and began my studies there pursuing my bachelor’s of music education degree. During the summer after my first year, I worked at an educational camp, and realized that I loved teaching younger students about science — especially life science. Since that summer, I have been studying biology education and loving every minute of it. I am involved with SACNAS (Society for the Advancement of Chicanos and Native Americans in Science) and also a Noyce Scholar. I am spending this fall semester of 2013 student teaching at D’Evelyn Jr./Sr. High School in Jefferson County and enjoying the experience immensely.
Why do you want to teach:
I want to be a teacher not to make students do more, but to help them be more. So many teachers have contributed to make me the person I am today, and I feel like there is no greater calling than to be able to influence the development of students to come. Although I am very passionate about science education, my main goal is not for students to learn every detail about biology. My desire is to create in students a knack for critical thinking, responsibility in their actions, and passionate curiosity about the world around them. I am thrilled to be in the position of influence that every teacher has on their students and honored to be able to teach what I love!
Describe a memorable teaching experience:
Before my semester of student teaching, I had the opportunity to teach a few classes at a school where I was doing observations. Although I did not teach very frequently, the students seemed to enjoy my presence in the classroom very much, and would often approach me for help in their activities or for their assignments. Towards the end of the year, one of the students who was in a journalism class asked if she could interview me, and the next week I was featured in the school paper! I was so encouraged and touched by the kind words a student had said about me, and still keep the article taped in my room as a reminder to remain focused on my efforts to be the best teacher I can be.
What does the Noyce program mean to you:
I truly don’t think I would be where I am today had I not been awarded the Noyce Scholarship for undergraduates. Studying biology was not always easy, and having the scholarship made it so that I could devote my time outside of class to studying instead of having to work. Because of this, I have been very successful academically and am leaving college with a strong confidence over my content knowledge. The Noyce program has also provided for me a camaraderie with other science and math undergraduates and current teachers in the Greeley area. Familiarizing myself with the highs and lows of a teacher’s life through their experiences has prepared me with the realities of the career. I also am immensely appreciative for the opportunity to attend the Noyce national conference last spring in Tucson, where I was enlightened and inspired with the experiences of Noyce teachers from around the country.