Why did you choose teaching?
I often say that I didn’t choose teaching, however it chose me. Naturally, I’m a nurturer and I love learning. It only made sense to mesh those two things together. I became a teacher to make a difference, to inspire, and to share my love with generations behind me.
Does representation matter in the classroom? Why or why not?
Absolutely! Students need to see someone like them doing something positive, rather than what is being portrayed on social media and news outlets. It’s no secret that African Americans and other minorities are underrepresented in education and that has lasting effects. When kids see themselves it becomes real to the point that they start to believe.
Can you name another educator, who had an impact on you as a teacher?
I have been blessed to have multiple teachers impact me, but one that stands out the most is my mentor teacher. During my time at Morgan State University, I had the pleasure of interning and working with Mrs. Tiffany Purnell. It was clear that she had a love for education and her students. She was super energetic and she went above and beyond. Everyday she came in and “brung” it! She exuded such poise and it made me think, “If I could have just a fraction of what she has I might be okay.”
What is your vision of a leader?
My vision of a leader is one that does not focus on the “right now” but “what can be”. A leader doesn’t just sit back and watch, but they too work to make things happen.
What are your current goals? Personal or professional?
My short-term goal is to earn my Master’s degree in Education. My long-term goal is to become an administrator or a reading specialist.
What is the hardest and best part of teaching?
The hardest part of teaching is learning about the traumatic experiences that some students face (raising siblings, hunger, drug addiction, abuse, etc.) and not being able to fix it. The best part of teaching is knowing that I am not just teaching my students, but they teach me. I love that we can learn from each other.
How do you stay motivated?
I stay motivated by thinking about the reward in the end. The reward for me is knowing that my students will one day think of something that I said or something that we did together and how I made them feel. They’ll see that I wanted the best for them and that I loved each and everyone of them.
If you could pass on any wisdom to your students, what would you share?
I would share with my students that in life you’re going to be tested. You will fall flat on your face. Someone is going to tell you that you can’t do something. You’re going to want to quit. And although these things may happen, it is up to you to persevere and find a way.