Erica Yoon, joined Citizen Schools after graduating from UC Berkeley with a Bachelors majoring in Cognitive Science Education minor. Serving as a AmeriCorps Teaching Fellow at Greenleaf K-8 Elementary School family in Oakland, California, she says “I love this job! It is definitely a position that comes with various challenges, but the relationships I make and the improvements I see on a daily basis keep me going.” Outside of work, she enjoys going for swims, playing Monopoly Deal, and singing karaoke.
At Citizen Schools, no role is more essential to the success of our students than that of the AmeriCorps Teaching Fellow. Citizen Schools National Teaching Fellows create extraordinary enrichment and academic support experiences for the students we serve the nation. On a daily basis, Fellows deepen connections between schools and parents, help to develop social-emotional skills through mentoring and coaching students, and facilitate hands-on learning opportunities through our apprenticeships
At Citizen Schools, no role is more essential to the success of our students than that of the AmeriCorps Teaching Fellow. Citizen Schools National Teaching Fellows create extraordinary enrichment and academic support experiences for the students we serve the nation. On a daily basis, Fellows deepen connections between schools and parents, help to develop social-emotional skills through mentoring and coaching students, and facilitate hands-on learning opportunities through our apprenticeships.
I wanted to service the young people in my community through the education field by creating unique programs and raising awareness on opportunities. Citizen Schools is continuously making efforts to achieve equity through education and nurtures and encourages teaching fellows to prioritize forward thinking. As a teaching fellow, I have developed valuable skills with the help of my colleagues and campus directors that I will be able to take with me after my two years of service.
I decided to become an AmeriCorps Teaching Fellow because I wanted to have the opportunity to discover If teaching was a possibility for me. I am currently In school majoring in Early Childhood Education and plan to continue for my B.A. in English Literature with a concentration in Middle School and High School Education.
I decided to be an AmeriCorps Teaching Fellow because I've met so many adults impacted by childhood trauma. I feel like if someone was able to be a positive light to them in their childhood things could have been different. It made me reflect on my life and the support I had. At that moment I realized my calling to be a resource to children through education.
I decided to be an AmeriCorps Teaching Fellow because I genuinely love children. I wanted to learn from the students and well as my teaching and assisting the CT's during the apprenticeship. I remember teachers checking me and making sure I was on a path of success and that is what I want to contribute as well. It's funny because I still remember some of the analogies and life lessons that my elementary teachers taught me.
Having attended NYC public schools throughout elementary, middle, and high school, I was able to experience a wide variety of schools across different communities within the boroughs of Queens and Brooklyn. My middle school years were some of my toughest years. At the time, there were many changes going on within my personal life that negatively affected my behavior toward my grades and schoolwork. In part, I owe my decision to become an AmeriCorps Teaching Fellow to my middle school guidance counselor who continuously pushed me to grow.
I decided to become an AmeriCorps Teaching Fellow in order to gain teaching experience and also be exposed to underprivileged education in order to be a catalyst for change in the community. After graduating college, I knew that I wanted to do teaching for a while. Being raised by my mom, who has been a teacher for 33 years, taught me the value of education. I wanted to be able to help students gain knowledge in places where they struggle to get it. I knew taking up a job as a Teaching Fellow for AmeriCorps, in partnership with Citizen Schools, would expose me to an environment that would help me learn about education, students, and myself.
"You must do that thing you think you cannot do.” I berate myself for my fear it’s too late I’m here in front of 30 young minds, it’s time they’re ready for me to cultivate to support to relate to help push them through. I step into the class, visions of winners, of champions, before me: let’s begin.
Giving back to my community has been a major part of who I am and working with students has always given me joy. As an AmeriCorps Teaching Fellow, I am given the chance to not only do a service for others, but also work with inner city youth. In my day-to-day, I get the opportunity to interact and build positive relationships with my students.
During college, I had various opportunities to mentor students as a side activity from my academics. From coaching middle school students in rowing to working with high school students in math, or supporting college first-years in their student jobs, mentoring was a natural activity I didn’t realize it at the time. Once I did, after graduating school, I wanted to continue! I found that Citizen Schools had a great balance of mentoring students through activities and building academic skills.
My decision to become an AmeriCorps Teaching Fellow was driven by a desire to serve in a tangible way. As a student at Wheaton College in suburban Chicago, I was an observer, and indeed, a participant in the segregation between the predominantly white and affluent suburb I resided in, and the economically disadvantaged and minority communities within Chicago.
I found out about the Fellowship through my older brother, who served as both a TA and TF with Citizen Schools for 3 years in Chelsea and Dorchester. My first experience working in education came in my senior year of college at UMass Amherst, where I interned at the Amherst Middle School as part of my practicum.
I decided to become an AmeriCorps Teaching Fellow because I wanted to impact students by providing them with the tools that they need to succeed academically. During my primary education, I did not have the privilege of having a person to ensure that I was obtaining all the skills that I needed to flourish in my academics. I come from a family where my parents worked long hours, are not articulate English speakers, and therefore, was unable to support me with my academics.