As an undergraduate student, I attended a small school in New Mexico called Highlands University, where I graduated with a Bachelor of Science Degree in Chemistry. I then pressed ahead to University of South Carolina where I have recently acquired a Ph.D. in Chemistry in 2013.
Being from a small town, it is important for me to experience different cultures. I tend to do this through two avenues: food and dance. My love for cultural awareness, global cuisine, and dancing started when I first joined Highlands’ International Club as an undergraduate student. Since then, I am always on the lookout for exciting international dishes as well as new opportunities to learn about cultural dances.
Also during my time as an undergraduate student, I found my passion for tutoring and teaching. I first embarked on this teaching journey when I was hired to tutor middle and high school math and science. This included Chemistry, Biology, Algebra, and Physics. I enjoyed my experience so much that I decided to stay on for several additional semesters. Throughout that time, I tutored 20 hr/week resulting in over 900 hours of tutoring experience.
My love and passion for being an educator continued during graduate school, where I got to teach several undergraduate level classes. This teaching experience really helped me establish my own footing as a teacher. For the duration of my graduate academic track, I was a teacher’s assistant and tutor for General Chemistry and Analytical Chemistry. Furthermore, I also taught Organic Chemistry recitations and several General Chemistry laboratories.
Teaching these classes made me realize several things. A student’s identity and background makes a difference in how they learn. It is therefore our responsibility as teachers and scientists to understand our audience and nurture curiosity. By using the Socratic Method whenever possible and always asking why, I engage students in the learning process and show them that learning can be fun and worthwhile. I enjoy teaching life-long learning skills and preparing students to live in an information age.
New Mexico Highlands University - B.S., Chemistry
University of South Carolina - Ph.D., Biochemistry