Why did you become an educator?
While attending The University of Texas at Austin, I finally found the educational experience that I had been waiting for. Professors noticed my potential for greatness, mentors spent time investing into my success, and I was able to find value within the coursework I was given. As I thought about why this wasn’t the status quo for all students in K-12 and Higher Education, I began to study the impact that teachers have on the students that step into their classrooms every morning, more specifically students of color and those whose come from low SES households. I completed over 300+ hours of volunteer service in schools and non-profit organizations. I became extremely passionate about providing the resources needed to give students a quality education when I realized that best resource for students is having a phenomenal teacher.
What’s your favorite part about being an educator?
It is a given that the aspect of teaching that I enjoy the most is the relationships that we build with our students. Even after the school year is complete I have been able to stay in contact with many of my students and continue to see their brilliance and talents develop. As a #YoungBlackEducator, I have the privilege of being able to inspire and empower students who share similar identities with myself everyday inside my classroom and the responsibility to advocate for students outside of it.
What makes your approach to teaching unique?
Student engagement is a strength that I have demonstrated through my years of teaching and it has directly impacted my students’ performance. Creating a culture of inclusivity is also imperative to student success. Students are only able to learn, grow, and develop their leadership potential if they are in an environment where they are comfortable to be who they are and are affirmed on a daily basis. The teacher is the most important factor in creating a positive classroom culture that maintains high expectations but centers on the development of the whole child.
Content knowledge is important for educators to be effective in the classroom, but I would argue that knowledge of the community provides the educator the leverage to be able to connect and truly understand the students who fill the seats in their classrooms. Through home visits, mentoring outside of school hours, and developing strong family communication practices, the success of my students dramatically increased.
How has TEC helped you in your career as an educator?
Community is such an important part of being able push through the challenges that we face as educators. There is so much work that goes on behind the scenes, after hours, and beyond the school day that teachers must do in order to make magic happen in the classroom. TEC provides the opportunity to recharge yourself among other teachers who are just as passionate about education.
The University of Texas at Austin
BA, African & African Diaspora Studies
BS, Applied Learning and Development (Youth & Social Services specialty)
Southern Methodist University
MEd, Teaching & Learning (Gifted & Talented Instruction concentration)
Corpsmember, Teach for America DFW
Team Lead, 6th Grade English Language Arts (DeSoto West MS)
Committee Member, Positive Behavior Interventions & Supports Committee (DeSoto West MS)
Team Lead, 8th Grade English Language Arts (Dade MS)
Team Member, Campus Culture Improvement (Dade MS)
Coach, Great Debaters (Dade MS)
Founder, Education PowerED