What led you to apply to EP?
I applied to Education Pioneers in 2010, when I was between my two years of a Master of Public Policy program at USC. I knew the organization would provide me with the chance to meet others who wanted to work professionally in public education either after, or as an alternative to, teaching in the classroom. I also thought it would be a great chance to work for an organization I might not yet know about.
What projects or initiatives did you undertake as a Fellow?
I was a Fellow with the Cotsen Family Foundation in 2010. The Foundation operates a fantastic peer mentoring program for teachers, and they were seeking support with their process to select mentors each year. I had the opportunity to review their current process, look for correlations between teachers’ skills and knowledge areas and their success as a mentor. That helped me suggest new ways to judge mentor applicants for their program.
How did EP shape your leadership growth and/or professional trajectory?
EP supported me by broadening my professional network. I met so many smart and accomplished people in the 2010 cohort, and since then I’ve often come across new people who are also a part of the EP network. I know I can reach out to that network for all kinds of professional questions and candidate referrals.
What were some key learnings or takeaways from your Fellowship experience?
One of the major takeaways from my summer Fellowship was realizing how many different perspectives, values, and ways of leading are present across the Los Angeles public education space. That was one of my favorite parts of being a part of the cohort experience and really stuck with me for the rest of graduate school and in my professional career. Our kids need leaders with different lenses, experiences, and values to be working alongside them.