Growing up I wanted to be a doctor because I my role model was my pediatrician who took care of my and my sister and my brothers before me. She was a superhero in my eyes. But really, the people who were superheroes to me were my teachers– every single one of them. From Ms. Paige who held my hand on my first day of kindergarten to Ms. Starks who explained her Barbie collection to me to Mrs.Elliot who made me feel closer to my Mexican heritage taking her Spanish classes. They all meant the world to me because they made me feel safe at school, encouraged me to learn and discover what I loved to do, and ultimately, inspired me to do the same.
I have always felt this immense feeling of gratitude toward my teachers and to the United States for offering me many opportunities to explore the world and myself and for giving me this enormous privilege to have an education and have a voice. I find this to be my responsibility really. I owe it to myself to offer to kids what I was given, to be their source of inspiration always rooting for them to be anything. I want to be that and that’s why I want to be a teacher.
Learning about Teach for America my sophomore year of high school was an eye-opener because I had no idea such an immense body of people existed who believed that educational equity was possible and who were working to make it happen.
And to be honest, it’s also a way for me to continue learning without going to school myself. I’ve spent so much of my time and life just going to school, studying until sunrise and losing myself in theory that I often feel lost in reality as well. This, I believe, is my chance to do something practical and put what I’ve learned into practice and use this opportunity to continue learning. I want to learn not just about teaching but how to relate to all kinds of people, how to make people feel amazing and how to take care of myself independent of my family’s constant support — just on my own for a bit.
I remember when I first became an alternative breaks leader my freshman spring and how I felt so incredible being able to talk to my peers about how much I loved my city and all that we could do to show our love for it. I felt so at home leading workshops and chatting about topics that interested me and that I was passionate about so I continued leading pre-orientation programs until my senior year. I learned that I had the skills to work with people, persuade people, motivate people and continue learning myself. And, quite frankly, I’d really like to continue on that path.