Boise State University, San Diego State University (Electrical Engineer, Physics)
During my years as a student at Montgomery Jr. High school in San Diego, I became interested in Astronomy and began developing an understanding of basic scientific principles. At an early age, I appreciated how rewarding, challenging, and daunting, the study of math and science can be. I soon began to explore the engineering side of Astronomy by building and using telescopes. During this period, I also joined the San Diego Astronomy Association and attended math and science lectures at the General Dynamics facility in Kearny Mesa. Sharing ideas and knowledge was commonplace, and part of the fun of learning.
To no surprise, my collegiate work centered on science and engineering. My first bachelor’s degree was in Physics, specializing in electro-optics, from San Diego State University (SDSU). Prior to attending SDSU, in order to complete my lower division work, I attended San Diego Mesa Community College. It was here that I tutored struggling math students in pre-calculus courses and found a rewarding way to supplement my income. Upon receiving my BS in Physics, I entered the work force and applied my skills in a variety of applications.
I developed an interest in electronics during my work as an engineer, and a layoff at Micron Technology in 2006 allowed me to return to school and complete a second baccalaureate degree in Electrical Engineering. To finish this degree in 2.5 years, I had to leverage courses from my previous degree and study closely with many of my colleagues. This involved a significant amount of tutoring as we shared knowledge and helped each other prepare for exams.
What allows me to successfully tutor individuals or groups, originates from my own struggles in Math, Science, and Engineering. I fully appreciate and understand what it can be like to become overwhelmed and confused with symbols, definitions, and concepts, and have experienced this as a university student. My development of a tutoring style has come by successfully overcoming this challenge.
To begin the process, I like to briefly interview the student and parent, and attempt to assess what the primary struggles are from their perspectives. It is important to identify the student’s level of understanding of prerequisite subject matter. A tutor can save significant time by recognizing this early. Once prerequisites are understood, I then begin with simple problems, showing a step by step process of how to solve a problem the correct way. This may or may not be exactly how the instructor teaches the material, and will depend on whether a particular method must be used.
It is important for the student to gain confidence from the start. Only then can we proceed to more complex material, showing solutions by example, and then letting the student begin to take on a self leading role. During my years as a student at Montgomery Jr. High school in San Diego, I became interested in Astronomy and began developing an understanding of basic scientific principles. At an early age, I appreciated how rewarding, challenging, and daunting, the study of math and science can be. I soon began to explore the engineering side of Astronomy by
Calculus. He really helped me understand the topics and when I had a question, he made sure I understood the answer before moving on.
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