ALUMNI SPOTLIGHT

Kudos to Bryce Turner (Boston, '15). He recently accepted a position as a Resident Teacher with GT Partner KIPP Boston.

Where are you teaching? 

BT: After graduating from Tufts University in December, I began working at KIPP: Boston as a resident teacher, while continuing to explore different graduate programs across the country, such as those offered at Tufts University, University of Illinois-Chicago, University of San Francisco, University of California-Berkeley, and Harvard University. I fundamentally believe that part of a teacher’s job is to be dedicated to the act of lifelong learning. For that reason, I am genuinely excited to begin teaching again less than a year after completing a summer with GTSA, but I am also looking forward to eventually returning to school. Once I go back, I plan on continuing to study Critical Race Theory in order to speak to what is happening on the ground in urban education, and to base my work in the pursuit of social justice through that platform.  

What are you most excited about? 

BT: I’m most excited about the current state of student activism amongst my generation. Last month, a former Black Panther Party member came to Tufts to speak, and I had the chance to chat with him after. While trying to connect across generations, he mentioned how some of this incarcerated friends (former Panthers and political prisoners) are so excited to see the younger generation still fighting for some of the same things they fought for. Things really come full circle when the roles are reversed and now we see young Black students inspiring the lives of the Black Panthers. And what I’ll say is that with the recent student resistance movements happening in Missouri and Yale, I am excited to be a part of a generation that knows what a quality education looks like, and is willing to struggle for that education by any means necessary. 

What subject(s) and grade(s) are you hoping to work with?
 
BT: I find voice to be an incredibly powerful entity.  And in my life, I have found my voice, lost my voice, spoken in someone else’s voice, had my voice silenced, had my voice taken for someone else’s use, reclaimed my voice, and have just recently learned how to use my voice.  I’ve found that in middle school English classrooms, many students are coming into their own voices for first time, and for different students this discovery can be anything from scary and overwhelming, to validating and liberating.  And to be a teacher in the classroom at the pivotal moment that a student is learning how to stand in their own power, I believe is a beautiful thing.  So moving forward, I hope to work with middle schoolers on literacy and the language arts, to bring the power of reading to students, and to share joy in the classroom space as we co-create knowledge.

What is your favorite memory from the summer?

BT: It’s hard to pinpoint a singular memory as my favorite, but the academic triathlon was a great day.  We were three weeks into the summer academy at that point, and the students in purple club had become really close to one another. In that, it was rewarding to spend non-intensive academic time with my club, seeing them interact as people and as friends, getting super excited to “nerd-out” and win the academic games. 

What did you learn from the job process? Were you asked to submit performance tasks, do a demo lessons, or have been asked unexpected questions? Do you have any tips/words of advice for your TF peers?

BT: I’ve learned that it’s really important to be critical and conscious of what you are looking for in a job after graduation.  The one that comes first won’t always the best opportunity out there, and the one that offers the most money won’t always be the healthiest space for you to be in. Desire to work in places that appreciate you and challenge you to grow into yourself. In general, when it comes to looking for jobs, I would just say stay true to yourself as much as you can. People inherently value other genuine people.  So first, reflect honestly with yourself about your interests, your motives, and your needs, and it’ll be easier for you to be honest with future employers.