Stevie JohnsonNevada Teacher Corps
Why did you become a teacher?
I started my teaching journey as an ESL teacher in France and Senegal. This is where I discovered my passion for teaching.
It was important for me to teach in a community that resembled the community that I grew up in. I believe all students deserve to have high-quality teachers and a high-quality education. I wanted to make a positive impact on my community and improve student outcomes, so that students can decide what careers and education they want to pursue in the future.
Why did you choose to apply for Nevada Teacher Corps?
I was looking for a program that would give me the support and tools to be the best teacher for my students. Nevada Teacher Corps (NTC) was a unique program with coursework alongside student teaching during the summer. It gives you a chance to continuously practice what you are learning in real time. Other pathways focused on a “sit and get” model that culminated in student teaching at the end. The location also played a role in my decision; Las Vegas is a very vibrant and exciting city with lots of different activities and types of communities across the city.
Why do you think it is important to teach right now?
All students deserve to have access to high-quality education. Students deserve to have educators who meet them where they are but also hold them to high standards. COVID has really impacted students’ experience with school and learning, and it is important to provide students with a safe learning environment as well and academic content.
What would you tell someone who is interested in becoming a teacher but is hesitant because they’ve heard it’s so challenging?
All professions have challenges; however, teaching makes a direct impact on students and communities. As a teacher, you have the opportunity to build relationships with your students, their families, and local organizations.
One thing that piqued my interest in teaching elementary school was that you never teach the same lesson twice, or you never have the same day twice. As a teacher, you wear many hats, and you can see the impact of your work in real-time. You are constantly getting feedback and data from your students.
What advice would you give someone who is applying to Nevada Teacher Corps?
If you are passionate about helping students, and if you want to never be bored at work, then go for it!
NTC supports Fellows during pre-service training and throughout their first year of teaching, and the program works hard to build community for Fellows and within Las Vegas. As a Fellow who had recently moved from Senegal, I felt very connected to the city through my relationships with my coaches, fellows, and school.