Throughout my primary and secondary school years, I never received any indication from my teachers that I was smart, talented, creative, and all of the things that teachers say to motivate students. In fact, I was considered an average student, and because of that I spent my primary and secondary education climbing the 'social ladder.' I had not even applied to college when I graduated high school while most students were busy planning out their life goals. I had no idea what I wanted to be when "I grew up." I also had no idea about this college thing and how big of a deal it is supposed to be.
Understanding my past is critical for understanding the experiences I had afterwards, including my current and future endeavors. I thrived in college (once I finally applied) and graduated with honors; I further excelled in my graduate program and graduated Magna Cum Laude. I have recently finished my Master of Public Health Certificate and am submitting my application for another Bachelor's degree in Molecular, Cellular, and Developmental Biology - what I will do with this degree is TBD. One of the most important lessons I learned throughout my experiences is to not 'pigeon hole' yourself in a particular career field. For example, I was a political science major with full intention of going to law school. After working at a law firm for several years, I am beyond grateful I pursued a Master's Degree instead.
Be open to learning, and let your interest and love of learning guide you, there is no reason to rush and make a decision about your life; plus you never know where life might lead you, just surrender to the flow. Remember, life is not a race. Also, never let anyone pressure you into thinking what you 'should do' and I will let my potential students ponder on the question: "What is true success?
I contribute all of the academic and professional success to the professors I had during my undergraduate and graduate experiences. I finally had an epiphany, that having instructor(s) passionate about teaching, and who have a keen sense for identifying students, who may not be confident for whatever reason, but have the ability to succeed. I was beyond lucky to have those experiences. Not only did it boost my confidence, give me motivation to succeed, and really make me feel like I could do anything I wanted to, just like my parents always told me.
So, my personal advice for the key to becoming a student who loves learning is finding the right instructor(s) who will bring out the best parts of you, understand your interests, and most importantly, know that each individual is different, therefore, so is their learning style.
I am passionate about helping students since without the guidance of my instructors to bring out my full potential, I do not know where I would be at this point in my life. My goal is to bring out that full potential from the student(s) I instruct, and find out a way to bring out a love and passion for learning that I never knew I had until my early 20's.
I have had both formal and informal experiences with students. Formally, I taught an applied statistics lab in graduate school, and throughout my career, a large portion of the work I do is through training and education. Informally, I have been helping students as long as I can remember. I volunteered at the Boys and Girls Club and was able to provide some academic support there. Being 7 years older than my sister, I helped her every day with her homework since my parents worked full time. Soon enough the word spread around the neighborhood and I was helping all the neighborhood kids with their homework.
Given my extensive academic history and love of learning I teach almost every subject. However, upper level math (calculus, trigonometry, etc.) are not my strong suit as I have not really taken many of those classes - Although I will begin getting into more advanced classes once I begin my degree in Molecular, Cellular, and Developmental Biology.
In terms of my teaching style and teaching philosophy, I typically begin learning from and about the student. This means getting a sense of personality type to help build a relationship and level of comfort with the student. I then like to verbally have conversations to determine why the student thinks they are being tutored, where they may be having issues, and what their goals are, no matter how big or how small. This information allows me to create an initial assessment to determine where I need to focus the curriculum and how to implement based on the student learning style (this will be determined during the first session with some activities I have which I believe are necessary for developing the curriculum, so the student will actually learned while being engaged. I tend to do a lot of exercises, activities, and games to keep it fun. Of course, there will be some traditional teaching methods, including homework, quizzes, tests, papers, and DEADLINES! Teaching organizational skills and time management is important for academic and professional success.
Undergraduate Degree: Berry College - Bachelor in Arts, Political Science and Government
Graduate Degree: George Washington University - Diploma, Public Administration
I have two dogs (a malamute mix and a husky mix), and live in the beautiful state of Colorado. Most of my hobbies include taking my dogs on hikes, camping, snowboarding, camping and running! I also enjoy refurbishing old furniture, making candles, painting, and gardening. However, nothing beats curling up on a cold winter day and reading a book!
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