My Fantastic Academic Role Model by Trayvon

Trayvon's entry into Varsity Tutor's March 2021 scholarship contest

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My Fantastic Academic Role Model by Trayvon - March 2021 Scholarship Essay

My academic roles model is my supervisor, Mr. Curry, who is a science teacher at the middle school I tutor at. Mr. Curry ran an after school tutoring program that I applied for and was hired to. His program was impactful to all the black students that were invited to attend.

Mr. Curry drew up a program to aid struggling black students in mathematics after the 2019 test scores were released, and showed less than 15% of black students reached Standard Met on the SBAC. Mr. Curry contacted all teachers who taught advanced math at each of the high schools in the Long Beach Unified School District, in order to find black math tutors. Mr. Curry created the after school tutoring program in order to motivate black middle school students that they can succeed in mathematics. He would have us pull students out of class about 5 minutes before and bring them in his classroom. We had two different groups of students on Mondays and Wednesdays, and Tuesday and Thursdays. I look up to him as he encourages students at their age that they do not need to be professional athletes or rappers in order to be successful. Many students, especially black students do not hear this enough, nor have this type of support. Mr. Curry recognized that black students especially did not always have positive role models in their lives outside of school. Mr. Curry opening this program not only benefited the students, but the tutors, myself included. The program opened my eyes to what black youth face. As someone who is black and grew up with both parents in my life, some things that the student went through, I could not imagine. Mr. Curry would hold short meetings with the tutors and talk to us about the lifestyles many of the students are faced with and how we could assist students who were struggling academically and get them on the right track.

I am thankful Mr. Curry opened this opportunity and gave me the opportunity to see how students that are younger than me from different backgrounds look at life differently from each other and the different ways we can motivate and encourage them. I learned several important things while tutoring under Mr. Curry, which motivated me to study Education at CSU Long Beach, in hopes of becoming a math teacher once I finish my degree and my credential.