Why do you want to be a teacher?
"The reason I want to teach is because I want to make public education more culturally sensitive, aware, and inclusive, and to change how we think about language instruction. I want to bridge languages and show students how Arabic and Spanish are so similar, for example, and to teach kids not to see something as foreign but as normal and part of your identity, that language is part of our humanity.
Also, because of my background, teaching is a calling I have. I arrived and lived in this place [Maine] as a refugee, and I wanted to know what my purpose was after leaving my home country, [Iraq]. Also, if you are presented an opportunity to stay in your home community and flourish there, that is worth a million bucks!"
Why diid you choose to enroll in BTS as a post-graduate?
"I did it after graduating for a number of reasons. I was doing a double major with Hispanic Studies and Education. After I went abroad in the spring of 2020, I had to come back from Spain early, in March, and those credits weren’t counted toward my major. So I was a little delayed with my Spanish. [My advisor Doris Santoro] said the post-grad option is a neat opportunity because there is stipend—which is huge when you’re living in Portland. I don’t think any of the other training programs offer that. Also, I felt more mature in my teaching philosophy and how I wanted to teach."