Oakland Unity Middle School

Grade & Subject: 6th & 8th Grade- Social Studies
St. Cloud State University, Minnesota: BA- Social Studies Education

My very first of year of teaching was a real eye-opener for me. I was teaching at a first year school serving fifth and sixth graders in deep East Oakland. The work was hard but rewarding, but the rest of my colleagues must have seen it from a different perspective. By late January, all of the other teachers and the principal left the school. We had to send out sixth graders to different schools in the middle of the year. It was crazy to think that all these students were robbed of learning not because of anything that they could control, but because all the adults quit on them.

I think of this experience every single day and it has been instrumental in shaping my current views on education. Being an educator is a commitment not to be taken lightly. Every child deserves a top notch education and it’s our job as teachers to provide them with everything we can. At Unity Middle School, also in deep East Oakland, I work every day to help students pursue their academic and life goals. My students deserve the best, and I am driven to provide them with my full presence and attention.

I am proud of the progress we have made at Unity Middle School and in public education in Oakland in general. Daily, I’m inspired by the work ethic and ambition of my students. We have established and grown relationships that are meaningful and trusting. None of my students will ever have to worry about me quitting on them.