Thankful Thursday: Teachers at School Number One in Fort Lee, NJ

Corps member Steph Yero-bula believes that her elementary school teachers had a huge impact on her life.

Each week, City Year San Jose/Silicon Valley will thank a person or organization for inspiring us in our service. This week, corps member Steph Yero-bula thanks her elementary school teachers for showing such high investment in her education.

On Opening Day, we were asked to dedicate our bombers to someone. Without any hesitation, I dedicated my bomber to my elementary school teachers at School Number One in Fort Lee, NJ. Watching the students grow these past few months at Cureton Elementary has made me realize the excitement my elementary school teachers must have felt watching me and my fellow students grow.

What I have also come to realize is that I was a very lucky student, and that is because I had teachers who stood up for me. They pushed me forward and fought for me when outside forces could not offer encouragement. I am so thankful to have had teachers who constantly forced me to think about the future. For instance, every year we would take some time out of class to discuss what we wanted to be when we grew up. They always encouraged secondary education and careers. They believed in my education more than I was ever able to understand until now.

My elementary school teachers poured their heart and soul into their students. Despite all the problems that I had at home, I always looked forward to going to school because they stressed how education was my way of making a difference; my way out. I have to say that they are a very big factor as to why I am here today; why I want to students to enjoy coming to school. My elementary school teachers played a huge part in me going to college and pursuing a career, not just a job.

Words will never explain how I will forever be touched by their hard work and their dedication to education.

I look at the students during my tutoring sessions and my after-school class and cannot help but feel motivated to give them what my teachers provided for me; to provide these students with a sense of accomplishing everything they dream of and beyond. I cannot wait to see the impact of our work at the end of the school year and tell my elementary school teachers of our work with City Year in San Jose, CA.

Steph Yero-bula, Corps Member CYSJ


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