My greatest personal satisfaction is achieved when I can help recognize and nourish the distinct talents inherent in others. I know that I would not be where I am today if it were not for someone at one point recognizing my potential, and encouraging me to pursue my goals. More than the numbers at the end of a income-statement, or the titles of positions on a resume, I find most honor in the service of inspiring people to chase their dreams, and helping in whatever practical way to achieve those dreams.
I am a 2014 Graduate of The College of New Jersey (TCNJ). I graduated Magna Cum Laude with a BA in Political Science. I am a member of the National Political Science Honor Society and The International Economics Honor Society. During my time in college, I served as the President of the Inter-Greek Council, President of the Model United Nations & Debate Team, and Vice-President of my Fraternity.
After graduation, I revived my NJ state certification in K-8 Education through Teach For America, a national non-profit organization that competitively recruits recent graduates to work in inner-city schools across the country. During my time with Teach For America, I worked as a full-time 6th Grade Social Studies in Passaic, NJ.
I am active member of my community, volunteering with Big Brothers, Big Sisters of America, and Literacy Volunteers of Morris County. I play ice-hockey & soccer, and like to balance a healthy social life with my other responsibilities.
Education & Certification
Undergraduate Degree: The College of New Jersey - Bachelors, Political Science (Economics, Philosophy, Law, Minor)
AP Biology: 4
AP US History: 4
AP World History: 5
AP U.S. Government & Politics: 5
Ice Hockey, Soccer, Reading, Hiking, Music
AP US Government
CLEP American Government
CLEP History of the United States I
CLEP History of the United States II: 1865 to the Present
CLEP Social Sciences and History
CLEP Western Civilization I: Ancient Near East to 1648
CLEP Western Civilization II: 1648 to the Present
College Level American History
College World History
High School Business
High School Level American History
High School World History
Study Skills and Organization
US Constitutional History
Q & A
What is your teaching philosophy?
Teaching is a science, just as much as it is a humanity. Thorough, well-planned, and detailed lessons are essential to teaching success. These elements must also be complemented with cultural/personal awareness and emotional intelligence in order to achieve long-term success.
What might you do in a typical first session with a student?
In a first session, I would focus on building a relationship with the student and his family, discussing different methods of teaching that are preferable to the student, plan a course of action, and if there is time remaining, beginning the first lesson.
How can you help a student become an independent learner?
Independency in any educational area must be preceded with an understanding of fundamentals and an awareness of available resources to assist along the way. As this is the ultimate goal of a tutor, I will aim to recognize and discuss these indications with the student, and go from there.
How would you help a student stay motivated?
Learning, especially in a subject someone is experiencing frustration with, is a difficult task, and easy to lose motivation in. As a teacher, I've learned that diversifying methods of teaching, adding excitement to lessons, and providing positive encouragement throughout the process helps offset this problem.
If a student has difficulty learning a skill or concept, what would you do?
When a student is having difficulty learning a skills or concept, I would first seek to identify the exact area of challenge. Then I would change the originally method of teaching, with another method (perhaps moving from text to visualization). If this does not work, then I would reinforce previously learned concepts and work back up to the point.
How do you help students who are struggling with reading comprehension?
Reading comprehension is an important skill, especially since it is a major component of standardized tests such as the SAT, LSAT, GMAT, GRE, etc. Answering this question requires more information as to the age and background of the student, and the particular goal (analyzing a poem or literary piece may be taught differently than analyzing legal document). For the most part, however, I would focus on structural elements, vocabulary, summarizing, and annotation.
What strategies have you found to be most successful when you start to work with a student?
I have found that visualization of difficult concepts can sometimes facilitate a major breakthrough in understanding for a student. I also have found that a mutual trust and relationship between the student and teacher, makes it easier for a student to ask questions or share he/she is having trouble with a certain skill.
How would you help a student get excited/engaged with a subject that they are struggling in?
In trying to get a student excited and engaged into a subject, I would try to recognize first what generally excites and engages the student, in or out of the academic setting. I would try to use this information to tailor lessons that may be more related to the student. I also naturally try to add excitement to teaching through humor.
What techniques would you use to be sure that a student understands the material?
In assessing a student's understanding of the material, I would use a wide-range of assessment (multiple choice, writing, verbal, project, etc.). In the end, regardless of the method of assessment, my goal is to ensure an understanding of the material.
How do you build a student's confidence in a subject?
Confidence is built through understanding. I will work with the student to find methods of teaching that facilitate academic improvement. These improvements will in the long-run build up into a confidence and intellectual curiosity.
How do you evaluate a student's needs?
Of course, first, I would ask the student this question. It's usually not just that easy though! Sometimes a student does not necessarily know his/her needs with regards with a particular subject. In this case, I will regularly assess areas of potential improvement, and seek to fill those gaps.
How do you adapt your tutoring to the student's needs?
Every student has different needs, just as every human has a different mind. Adapting lessons to a student's needs requires, of course, an understanding of student needs. Once this is possible, I will work with the student in recognizing different teaching methods that will accommodate those needs.
What types of materials do you typically use during a tutoring session?
In general, I will have a textbook, laptop, utensils, iPad, and any other relevant materials handy during a session.