I hail from the lovely little big city of Long Beach, California, home of the Queen Mary, the Port of Long Beach, one of the best airports around, and the original location of the famous Roscoe’s Home of Chicken and Waffles. About 12 years ago, in my 7th grade science classroom, we began studying the anatomy of the cell. Later, we were tasked with making a model of DNA. Instead or rushing off to buy the DNA model kit, my mom and I got creative with some pipe cleaner and colorful beads. The result was closer to a warped ladder than a helix, but it was certainly shiny and colorful, hanging proudly from the classroom ceiling with the models from other students, homemade or kit-based. Since then, I’ve dissected a cow eye, made antibodies, graduated from UC Berkeley with B.A. in Molecular and Cell Biology and sequenced DNA from cancer cells and saliva, but I look back at that shiny DNA as the beginning of a long-lasting passion and eventual career in the sciences.
My tutoring career began in high school, tutoring other students in math, biology and chemistry. There, I found happiness and satisfaction interacting with the different students I met and tutored. I continued along a similar vein as an undergrad, as a teaching assistant in general and organic chemistry, where I learned that there is always more to learn, even when the class ended for me a semester or two earlier. After graduation, my first job was a lab instructor for a summer session organic chemistry course, where I further developed my teaching abilities. My passion for the sciences has been coupled with my desire to help others learn these past few years. Starting at AJ Tutoring allows me to express both passions in a great learning and teaching environment.
My teaching philosophy is to continue learning for deeper understanding and to better instruct others. I think what I enjoy most about tutoring is the opportunity to connect with students, meeting them where they are and guiding them to their “Aha!” moments. I’m familiar with struggling to comprehend a concept and recall how great it felt when the pieces finally came together. It’s those instants that I strive to help others achieve and, along the way, maybe instill a little excitement in them for what they’re learning.
In my spare time I enjoy jumping around on Netflix, listening to podcasts, dancing, and learning more about the world.