Promise Harvey

George Washington University
Hometown: Philadelphia, PA

I was looking for internships that aligned with my desired career path of being an educator. I love learning and interacting with children so I thought Breakthrough would be a great fit. My favorite subject is Black Literature/African-American History, and, considering I am majoring in English, my favorite subject to teach would be Language and Composition. There are teachers that positively and negatively impacted me. I have encountered both and have learned to not give up, always work hard, and be nice. I am excited about getting to plan my class curriculum around African American Studies. I hope to learn how to lesson plan and run a classroom remotely. If teaching wasn’t an option, I would want to be a lawyer.

Thoughts on Virtual Learning:
I personally don’t like it for myself, I believe I learn and work better physically. However, students must continue their education so they do not fall behind their peers, so I will do my very best to ensure that. One pro of virtual learning is the asynchronous element, and a con is not being able to formulate one-on-one connection.

Chloe Listman

Temple University
Hometown: Dresher, PA

I am studying Early Childhood/Special Education at Temple. My ultimate goal is to be a teacher. I wanted to become a teaching fellow to learn new strategies and gain experience in order to become a better teacher. My favorite subjects are writing and literature. I love to read and I love being creative with writing. My 9th grade Algebra 2 teacher made a huge positive impact on me. I was struggling with the material and he made every effort to stay after class and helped me reach my full potential in the class. I’m excited to meet the students and experience online learning for the first time as a teacher. As a teaching fellow, I hope to come away with new skills that I can use in my career, especially when it comes to teaching online. If teaching wasn’t an option, I would probably be a Speech-Language Pathologist.

Thoughts on Virtual Learning:
I think the ability to be flexible time wise is very valuable. Students can work at their own pace more than they can in the classroom. A big con would be that the social aspect of school for students is lacking when they’re learning virtually. I think virtual learning will continue to expand. More and more materials will continue to be available and accessible to a wider range of people.

Dahlia LaBan

University of Delaware
Hometown:Cheltenham, PA

I heard about Breakthrough from a friend who told me there was no better way to figure out if and how you wanted to be an educator. It seemed like an amazing way to get involved and see if I can handle it. I want to be a teacher and my degree is in secondary history education. I love helping others draw connections between past and present, and teaching them about interesting people or events. I’ve had many teachers that positively impacted me but in college I had this young, brilliant anthro[pology] professor. He thought at a higher level than anyone I’d met and asked the same from us. The expectation was high and I surprised myself by meeting it. Everything kind of rocked my world. If teaching wasn’t an option, I would be an archaeologist! I wanted to be an archaeologist for pretty much my entire childhood and I have an anthropology minor now.

Thoughts on Virtual Learning:
I think virtual learning is very difficult for a lot of people who struggle with attention and motivation. I know it was very difficult for me to take my work seriously when I was just sitting at my desk staring at my screen all day. I also think that it is difficult to develop relationships with teachers and other students without being in the same room. However, virtual learning removes certain barriers like transportation and social conflict. It also forces teachers to be creative with the activities they choose and to cut out unnecessary parts of the curriculum. It can also provide more accountability for students to remain engaged. I think virtual learning is only going to grow in the future. I hope that it can be used to make college education more accessible, both financially and geographically and for students who have trouble getting to school or have to be absent for extended periods of time so that they don’t fall behind.

Leah Owen-Oliner

Swarthmore College
Hometown: Merion Station, PA

I was a teaching fellow last summer and it was an incredible experience. I loved working with Breakthrough students and I think I learned as much from them as they learned from me. I originally applied because I want to help work to bridge inequities in education and provide additional resources to Philadelphia students. My favorite subject to both study and teach is science! Science gives such a unique and profound understanding of the world around you. It is so important to have people with scientific literacy who can share their knowledge and instill a love in science in others. In middle school, I learned that often it just takes one great teacher to change your mind and make you feel capable of a realm of study that previously seemed inaccessible. I’m excited to meet and get to know my students! I can’t wait to see them learn and grow over the summer, and to help them on their educational path. Ultimately I want to become a pediatrician in Philadelphia, so that I can serve populations in order to bridge inequalities in health care. I think Breakthrough will provide valuable insights that will help me in my future career.

Thoughts on Virtual Learning:
Although virtual learning in this manner is unprecedented and perhaps not ideal, I think virtual learning provides exciting opportunities for approaching learning in new ways. In a world that is increasingly technological, I think virtual learning has the potential to help both teaching fellows and Breakthrough students learn new computer and technology skills. I think there are innumerable possibilities for virtual learning in the future. Virtual learning and asynchronous learning has the potential to make higher education more accessible for people all over the world.

Caitlyn Hayes

Stony Brook University
Hometown: Long Island, NY

I would like to be a teacher and I am planning to go for a degree in education after I graduate. I am planning to become an elementary school teacher. I did enjoy working with Breakthrough last year and I am looking forward to teaching for Breakthrough again this summer. Being a teaching fellow gives me hands-on experience running a classroom and working with students. My favorite subject to study is science. I love learning how the world works and how everything is interconnected. I also love teaching science and sharing my passion with students. My Spanish teacher in college truly made me feel connected to the language and enjoy learning it. She always encouraged me and made me feel successful. She made herself very open to her students and connected with us on a more personal level. I am super excited to work with my students and to improve upon my teaching skills. If I wasn’t going to be a teacher I would be a cryoseismologist. I can’t wait to start at Breakthrough!

Thoughts on Virtual Learning:
I think virtual learning is a great tool, but I don’t think it is the answer to schooling. The social aspects of online schooling do not compare to those of an actual school. I think it will be more difficult to connect with students on a more personal level. However, it will make it easier to use other resources and expand students’ self engagement. I think it will be a good supplement for online homework. I did have online homework when I was younger through castle learning. I do not feel that it can be a replacement for in person school permanently.

Johnny Gross

Yale University
Hometown: Chicago, IL

I have had the privilege of going to elite schools that have prepared me well for college and beyond. This, however, is not the case for everyone, and I want to work with those from underserved communities to help make education more equitable. I would love to become a teacher and help students discover their passions. I most enjoy studying foreign languages and history and the intersection between the two. Both subjects are windows into different cultures, ways of life as well as the makeup of the world. Immersing myself in these areas of studies gives more meaning to my life and personal journey, and allows me to understand on a deeper level the lives of others around the world. This will be my first time teaching, and I hope to be able to inspire my students in the same way that I have been inspired by my teachers. I also want to learn from the students personal experiences to expand my horizons and broaden my perception of what it is like to be a student (of varying backgrounds) in this country. If teaching wasn’t an option, I would be a translator.

Thoughts on Virtual Learning:
Part of the excitement of teaching and learning for me comes from in-person discussion and interaction. However, a virtual learning environment can offer what an in-person environment might lack. In a virtual learning environment teachers can use an asynchronous learning platform to give students more time to develop their thoughts before contributing to a discussion, removing some of the pressure from contributing to in class discussions. One potential drawback, however, is giving feedback on an asynchronous platform might be trickier to navigate. It might be difficult to gauge whether or not the student is understanding the feedback when not in person.

Emily Bishop

Millersville University of Pennsylvania
Hometown: Lancaster, PA

I am currently studying both English Secondary Education and Inclusive Education, so the Breakthrough Collaborative mission directly aligns with my future aspirations in the classroom. My favorite subject to study is history, because I love learning about the past to shape better beliefs for the future. I love teaching literature, because it is amazing to see the different ways a text can be understood. This summer, I am most excited to see my expectations surpassed by my students! I can’t wait to see what’s in store for me. Not only do I hope to develop my professional skills as a teacher, I hope to end up with a group of young adults to mentor for as long as I possibly can. If teaching wasn’t an option,, I’d like to grow my own food and have a small local business rooted out of it. Last summer, I worked on a small CSA farm that provides opportunities to individuals with intellectual disabilities. It was a tremendous amount of work, but it was so rewarding. I would like to recreate that experience, because I value giving back to the community more than anything else.

Thoughts on Virtual Learning:
Virtual learning allows us to reach out to more people, because we aren’t limited to the people in a smaller geographical area. On the other hand, it can be a little difficult to get used to virtual learning, especially when it comes to developing professional relationships online. Sending an email to a colleague is somehow a lot different than walking into their office! An opportunity I see in virtual learning is the ability for classrooms to include outside resources as part of the curriculum, with online interviews or calls with well-respected individuals. It takes a lot of time and money to get a guest into a school building, but online learning is a lot more accessible.

Aquil Starks Jr.

Howard University
Hometown: Glenside, PA

I applied to Breakthrough this summer because I wanted to gain leadership skills; I’ve always had a hard time developing in that area and I wanted to prove to myself that I could be a leader and push myself out of my comfort zone. My favorite subjects are Art and English because there is not one answer. They require you to critically think and digest what’s being presented in front of you. I was strongly impacted by my 12th grade english teacher, Ms. Kristen, who pushed to write and evolve as a writer. She is one of the reasons why Journalism is my major, she believed in my talent and pulled me aside to tell me to chase my dreams. I want to make one impact on someone’s life, as long as that is possible I’ve done my job. If teaching wasn’t an option, I would be a Journalist or Producer.

Thoughts on Virtual Learning:
I think virtual learning is a great tool to utilize as a supplement to in person teaching; it forces teachers to become more creative, which isn’t a bad thing. The only con with online teaching is having enough communication. I feel like it’s still early to tell, but I hope everyone can have access to virtual learning and it provides more resources to children who maybe do not have transportation to receive education.

Julia Rappaport

Wellesley College
Hometown: Bala Cynwyd, PA

I wanted to be a teaching fellow mainly because I’m an aspiring teacher looking to prepare myself for the workforce. I also wanted to give back to the community that gave me so much when I was in grade school. The only way I know how to do this is to pay it forward in the way that my past educators have done so: through teaching and passing on skills and advice. I’m excited to put my skills to the test this summer. Breakthrough provides a great space for people to try a variety of methods of teaching without fear of failure. I find it hard to picture myself as being anything other than an educator, so in a realistic sense if teaching wasn’t an option, I would be in education policy or I would be a designer. I have recently picked up sewing as my quarantine hobby and I am really enjoying it!

Thoughts on Virtual Learning:
I think that the reality is that we are moving towards a virtual life. The coronavirus has sped up this process, and I believe that it will make employers more receptive to working from home instead of going into an office everyday. Therefore, virtual learning will prepare students for future tasks. In addition, it can provide students a way to participate in classroom discussions without the anxiety of speaking in front of a whole class. Furthermore, students can really think about the questions asked in discussion boards and formulate a well thought out answer instead of having to think of ideas on the spot. Virtual learning will be a springboard to more thoughtful live conversations.[i]

Before orientation, I saw technology as a barrier between me getting to know my students to the best of my ability since it cannot provide the same type of organic conversations that a live, in person classroom can. While this still holds true, I believe that virtual learning provides a myriad of ways to improve students learning that live classes may not do. For example, I have learned that online discussion boards are great because students may feel more inclined to share responses that they might otherwise not share in live classes. While virtual learning is different from what we are normally used to, I have learned that change is not always a bad or scary thing. I’m excited to learn alongside each other this summer about how to use technology to our advantage.

Nicole Lauria

La Salle University
Hometown: Philadelphia, PA

I’ve worked with Breakthrough in the school year program for the past two years, and I really enjoy working with the students and helping them expand their knowledge and find the things they’re passionate about. I am an education major and plan to teach in Philadelphia after I graduate. My favorite subject to study is Math, but my favorite subject to teach is a tie between Science and English. I don’t think there was one specific teacher that motivated me, but I think that I had a generally positive group of teachers growing up that made me passionate towards education. I am most excited about getting to work with the students at GFS every day, one of the hardest parts about the school year program is only getting to see them once every two weeks. It’s like every time they come back, they’re different kids. I hope to get more teaching experience this summer, but I also hope that my students enjoy their time with me and have a positive experience at Breakthrough this summer despite it being online.

Thoughts on Virtual Learning:
I think that virtual learning presents a lot of challenges, especially in underserved communities and one of the major cons is that there isn’t universal access like you have with school buildings. I think that the pros are that it gives our students an experience that they otherwise would not have, and gives them the opportunity to improve their technology skills which will help them in the future. I think that in the Fall, a lot of schools are going to be incorporating different versions of virtual learning throughout the year and it will have a different place in each school.

Maria D’Ambrose

University of Notre Dame
Hometown: Downers Grove, IL

The reason I want to teach with Breakthrough this summer is because of my passion for equity in education. I believe that this is a valuable experience that will not only allow me to give back to the community, but it will also assist me in my quest to become a better teacher. [Maria participates in a conflict resolution and violence prevention skill program South Bend, Indiana.] One experience impacted me heavily. I came across a young boy who carried a [heavy] burden exemplified through harsh words and forceful actions. What [ultimately got my attention] was [not his actions, but] the way the teacher in the classroom handled him — after each outburst, the teacher would yell at the boy, kick him out of class, and send him to the office, where he was yelled at again, then sent back to the classroom. This occurred multiple times over the 30 minute period that I was there. After I left, I could not stop thinking about the situation. Clearly, the kid was struggling with something, yet the teacher continued to yell at him, which only exacerbated the situation. What would have happened had the teacher used compassion and understanding rather than chastisement? What if doing so could eventually teach him how to regulate and express his emotions in a healthy manner? How is our school system helping or hurting students like him? The more I thought about it, the more questions I had. This experience was ultimately one that ignited my passion for equity in education. If I wasn’t going to be a teacher I would be a clinical psychologist! I believe mental health treatment is incredibly important, and would love to be able to contribute in this area.

Thoughts on Virtual Learning:
I believe virtual learning can never be the same as in-person learning; however, I believe that it is what you make it to be. While some might argue that it is convenient and allows for greater flexibility in this day and age, I think it can be more difficult to build relationships as well as a community due to the lack of in-person interactions. I think virtual learning may not have as many opportunities in the future as one might expect. Despite its accessibility and lower costs associated with it, there are still issues regarding technological equity as well as the value of in-person interaction.

Charles Miller

Temple University
Hometown: Cheltenham, PA

I am three years into my five year English teaching degree and I think Breakthrough is a fantastic opportunity for me to grow as an aspiring teacher and I really believe in the idea of educational equity for all students. My favorite subject is English — I think it helps those who study it better understand and process the sensory and emotional world in which they live. Each of my high school teachers instilled a different positive attribute in my mind and they’ve helped me become the successful student, writer, and thinker that I am today. I am looking forward to gaining experience in teaching, hopefully helping my students grow, and being a part of the summer camp aspect of the program. 🙂 I never had that as a kid. I want more meaningful experience working with kids on writing, but also on the social aspects of helping kids grow. If I wasn’t going to be a teacher, it’s dorky, but I’d love to be a content creator/streamer. For anyone asking themselves “did he just say he wanted to be a party decoration?” let me explain. A Streamer, or a Content Creator, is an independent media Creator who broadcasts themselves via the internet in the form of live or pre-recorded video. Streamers and Content Creators are a lot like talk show hosts in that they are personality driven entertainers. I am interested in the video game side of streaming, where people broadcast themselves playing the newest games and the most competitive Esports.”

Thoughts on Virtual Learning:
I think that (once we go back to whatever our new normal is) virtual learning will be an incredibly helpful tool for students and teachers alike. I think that it allows for students to work where they’re most comfortable, both in terms of space and socialization. The biggest con I see is simply access to the technology we would need to ensure equity to each student. I think that students will be able to learn at a more unconventional pace and therefore engage in the content the way they see best.

Alaina Solomon

Brandeis University
Hometown: Narberth, PA

I applied for this teaching fellow position because I want to be a teacher in the future. I was looking for a program this summer where I could get experience working in a classroom, forming relationships with students, and creating my own lessons. I hope that this experience will solidify my love for teaching and education and will help me gain valuable experience I can take with me in the future. I am most excited about meeting my students and forming relationships with them and the other teaching fellows I will be working with. I am also really looking forward to being challenged while learning how to create lessons and teach them, especially in an online environment. I hope to get experience teaching science and experience making lesson plans and engaging with students. I also hope to form relationships with the other teaching fellows who also have an interest in education and possibly being teachers in the future. Besides being a teacher in a traditional school setting, I would be a fitness instructor. Teaching is something that I have a passion for and that I love doing. So even if I wasn’t in the classroom with children, I would want to be teaching some sort of physical fitness class in a gym or fitness studio.

Thoughts on Virtual Learning:
I believe that virtual learning paves the way for less-traditional lessons and teaching styles. It would be very difficult to just lecture and have students take notes in a virtual learning environment, so it really pushes teachers to get out of their comfort zone to assign projects and more interactive lessons. However, the one thing about virtual learning that I don’t love is that it is harder to form connections with your students and co-workers. Without being able to meet in person, I do believe that it is more difficult to form close relationships with students. [Another concern], especially in online discussion platforms, is this pressure to be “perfect”. When there is essentially an unlimited amount of time to complete a response to a prompt, there may be more pressure on students and teachers to feel like they need to express themselves in a clear and “perfect” way.

Georgena M. Williams

Harvard University
Hometown: Havertown, PA

I decided to apply to Breakthrough because I am very passionate about increasing educational outcomes for underserved demographics. As a first-gen, low-income student born in Jamaica, I am aware of the positive impact good quality education can have on student achievement outcomes. After all, education is one of the main reasons my family and I immigrated to the United States. As of right now, I am highly considering pursuing a career in education because I love working with kids, and I want to make a difference in the world, and education is the perfect field to do so! I would not be where I am or the person I am right now if not for the educators and mentors who supported and inspired me along the way. I am so incredibly excited to meet the students! I can’t wait to help them reach their full learning potential and to support them in their endeavors. Breakthrough provides me with an opportunity to make a meaningful impact on the lives of the students I will teach, and I am super excited to leap into my new adventure as an educator. Breakthrough will allow me to decide if education is the right path for reaching my future career aspirations. If I don’t become a teacher, I want to work in education policy so that I can create larger systemic change. For too many years, our education system has inadequately served students of color and those from low-income backgrounds, and I want to change that! Whatever specific career I end up pursuing, I aim to continuously make an impact on the first-gen, low-income minority, and immigrant communities that have supported me along the journey.

Thoughts on Virtual Learning:
I have mixed feelings about virtual learning. In some cases, I think virtual learning opens up a new world of possibilities for educators to explore, allowing educators to explore non-traditional methods to assess knowledge. In a way, I feel as though virtual learning makes learning much more individualized since students can complete work at their own pace. However, I also feel as though virtual learning raises huge concerns regarding educational equity. Virtual learning has highlighted disparities in our education system due to socioeconomic barriers that many students from underserved demographics experience frequently. I am hopeful that by highlighting the preexisting educational disparities, the experience of virtual learning will strengthen our educational system!

Carissa Saunders

University of Southern California
Hometown: Vancouver, WA

I want to be a teaching fellow because I love tutoring and mentoring during the school year and because I am very dedicated to working towards equity in education. I also want to learn more about the occupational demands of different classrooms to support my future career as a pediatric occupational therapist. I believe that having a more thorough understanding of the range of daily activities in a school will enable me to better serve students in the future. When I was in 7th grade, my science teacher went above and beyond to make science engaging, approachable, and hands on. He filled the classroom with fish, lizards, chinchillas, and more, and the year consisted of one fun experiment after another. For example, we designed our own plant experiments and solved mystery crimes with gel electrophoresis. He made me believe in my ability to be successful in science and inspired a love of the subject that would ultimately help guide my career. I am most excited to start making connections with the students and other teaching fellows! I hope to improve my teaching ability and to learn more about how to help students succeed independently. If I wasn’t going to be a teacher, I would love to run a women’s shelter or to design better public transportation in west coast cities!

Thoughts on Virtual Learning:
One of the pros of virtual learning is that it removes some of the physical barriers to people accessing their education, like some physical disabilities and the cost of transportation. Another pro is that it is largely self-paced, so students can access the materials when they are feeling most ready to learn. One of the cons is that it is more difficult for students to engage with the material and with each other. There is also a resource gap between students with greater access to supplies, wifi and devices, and at-home support. I think virtual learning will continue to provide more flexible ways for people to access their education.

Jakyra Anderson

Howard University
Hometown: Chicago, IL

I initially developed an interest in the program after hearing remarkable feedback from a friend about her personal experience teaching students at Breakthrough Atlanta. I wanted to be a part of the change that made an impact on the lives of adolescents seeking knowledge through Breakthrough Collaborative. Breakthrough will allow me hands on experience working with adolescents to further prepare me for my future career as a Counseling Psychologist with a specialty in urban adolescents. Although I do not have aspirations to become a teacher, I do aspire to give support, guidance and impart beneficial lessons to the youth. Breakthrough will allow me to use my voice to uplift others and aid in them doing the same with everyone they engage with. I know being a teaching fellow will be a fulfilling experience but one aspect of the fellowship that I hope to gain is a better understanding of how adolescents behave and interact with one another, especially in an academic setting. This will give me the unique opportunity to teach while being taught so many valuable lessons from the active learners and the enthusiastic instructors I work alongside each day to accomplish the goal of inspiring the next generation of innovative leaders, advocates and community servants. If I could be anything else besides a teacher, that occupation would be professional Pastry Chef. I am a lover of anything sweet and I enjoy making them from scratch just as much. Through becoming a pastry chef I could spread smiles and happiness with my flavorful, delicious treats.

Thoughts on Virtual Learning:
Personally I am not a fan of virtual learning because I do not feel as though it is an effective learning compared to an in class setting. In my opinion, students are not able to acquire meaningful instruction due to the lack of in person interaction. The environment plays a major role in how well a person learns and the amount of information they retain, therefore shifting a learners environment from in class instruction to virtual allows for many other bothersome distractions. These distractions can create an impediment to understanding, comprehension and retention of information recently taught. But independence is a significant advantage that comes with online instruction. Students have the ability to work on their own, within their own limits in a timely manner. Virtual learning causes students to work independently, with the support of their instructors, to complete coursework on time to the best of their ability.

Davon Collins

Howard University
Hometown: Brooklyn, NY

I know how vital this program is for a student who has the odds stacked against them, as I was one of them. I know from experience that these programs work and I strongly believe in them. Along with my passion for educational non-profits, I have grown to love working with kids. I taught swimming lessons on the weekends for most of high school and it was so gratifying. The process of getting to know a kid, learning their strengths and weaknesses, and watching them grow is like no other. It’s beautiful and rewarding. I am excited to grow as an instructor and student but most of all I want to work at Breakthrough to give back. My [mentor and] middle school science teacher taught biology, sexual health, earth sciences and astronomy over two years and he truly had a love for science. He was also actively doing research on butterflies and bees at Columbia and on occasion would bring in butterflies or other lab samples to show us that what we were teaching could be applied in real life. He also was constantly bringing in scientists of color to show us what was possible. He taught me that anything was possible and instilled in me academic confidence. And to this day we are still friends.

Thoughts on Virtual Learning:
Virtual learning seems like it will be the primary form of instruction for the foreseeable future. Pros: access to all kinds of education and resources. Cons: miss out on the physical connections made in school. I think virtual learning has the opportunity to make expensive/exclusive education obsolete as now students across the board, regardless of class are gaining access to all kinds of learning opportunities and now have more time to explore passions.

Maddie McKean

Middlebury College
Hometown: Chester Springs, Pennsylvania

I was a teaching fellow last summer and it was one of the best summers I have ever had. I wanted to come back to support my students again and continue to build relationships with them. I can see myself being a teacher at some point or in some capacity in life, but my goal right now is to go to medical school and become a pediatrician. I think it is extremely important for pediatricians to have experience working with children and learning how to teach so that they will have the skill set to communicate effectively with children and their families. I have had lots of teachers that have impacted and changed my life but my high school AP US History teacher changed the way I saw the world, myself, and how I interacted with the world. On the first day of class he wrote on the top of the board “History is written by those who won.” This thought had never occurred to me, the thought that there are so many other sides to the stories we have been taught. He left that quote up there all year and would routinely point to it or circle back to it as a reminder that sometimes we must question the motive of the narrative, and whose stories end up getting told and whose don’t.

Thoughts on Virtual Learning:
I have this lab professor that always says “we can only work with the data we have been given,” and in some ways this has become a motto for me. This is the opportunity we have been given and though it may not be ideal or what we had predicted/had in mind it was what we have and what we are working with. I think there are so many online educational tools being developed and that have been developed that we will now be able to utilize. However, some unfortunate things about virtual learning are that a lot of the math games and activities I created last summer are no longer really going to work virtually, but I’m determined to find another way! I think virtual learning can open doors for flexibility in our lives and in building our own schedules.

Lauryn Brown

Howard University
Hometown: Charlotte, NC

I want to be an educator and advocate for education reform in the future so I thought Breakthrough was a great opportunity to practice. I also believe it is important to be in the position before you advocate for change so you can truly improve the system. I love working with children and even was an assistant dance instructor in high school which was by far my favorite job. I hope to gain more knowledge and experience so that I may be a vessel. I am most excited about getting to know all of the kids! This should be a very fun summer even if it is virtually. I learned the most in classes that I had a good relationship with the teacher. This is why I believe it is imperative to figure out how to build that relationship even if it is online. I hope to gain knowledge on my strengths and weaknesses as a teacher. I also think that this will be a good insight on how I should adjust my own teaching style. I have been on the fence about teaching but I believe that this is not only a passion I have but a skill. I hope to advance these skills so that I can be a light to the future generations. When teaching isn’t an option, I want to be a couple of other things in the future, because I don’t believe you have to be one thing in life. I would definitely be an entrepreneur because I love being able to create.

Thoughts on Virtual Learning:
Virtual learning can be challenging for a multitude of reasons. Whether it’s tech issues, short attention spans, or the environment I think that it can be a challenge. Virtual learning can also help students pace themselves and allow students to work comfortably. I think that as technology advances there will be more improvements to virtual learning but as of now we can do our best to educate online. I think that this will be a great opportunity to educate globally. Now that the classroom is anywhere people are able to meet and discuss whenever they would like to. Students are able to have study groups using better applications such as zoom. I think this is a great opportunity for people to keep learning and make learning more accessible especially in historically underserved communities.

Mia Jackson

Howard University
Hometown:Chicago, IL

I decided to become a teaching fellow to get experience working with urban adolescents and have the opportunity to have an impact on the way students perceive academics. I do not want to be a teacher but I would not mind working in education. My overall goal is work in the mental health field. I want to work for Child Protective Services, improving family dynamics.My favorite subject to study is psychology because I enjoy teaching Math.Many of my teachers positively impacted me. My teachers always saw something in me that I didn’t see in myself. My teachers slowly became the family I created. Many of my teachers from elementary school and high school are still in my life. They have been the main reason for my success thus far.I am most excited to grow and challenge the students to become the best versions of themselves.I hope that I am able to positively impact these students lives in any way that they may need me to. I hope that I am able to make math more enjoyable for many students.I would be a family and child psychologist.

Thoughts on Virtual Learning
Virtual learning can be challenging and takes some time to get adjusted to. One of the main pros to virtual learning is being able to have access to multiple different learning tools (Khan Academy, youtube, extra online practice). One of the biggest downsides to virtual learning is building those relationships and a sense of trust within the classroom (teacher-student and student-student)I think more schools will take advantage of virtual learning. I am hoping that virtual learning will become less of a hassle for students as time progresses. I am excited to see the growth within the students and even myself after this six week program!

Breakthrough Collaborative

180 Grand Ave #1225, Oakland, CA 94612, USA