Major: Government, Core Texts and Ideas Certificate
TFA Placement: Houston, 2019 Corps
Dyana Martinez wants to lead an education revolution. “There are some fundamental issues in our education system in the US and my goal is to tackle those from the political aspect,” she said.
“After Teach For America, I’d like to work in education — school board, state board of education, maybe work for the Department of Education one day — start an educational political revolution that is long overdue,” she said.
Dyana grew up in San Antonio, where she had an amazing high school experience, but one that made it clear just how stratified the opportunities in education are for students in the United States. Dyana started out in public school but, because of encouragement from her teachers, moved to a private school on the other side of town.
Dyana had always assumed she knew her city, but her simple move to another school gave her a whole new perspective. “It opened my eyes to the fact that I was not as informed about the ins and outs of San Antonio as I thought, because I realized what true academic opportunity looks like,” she said.
Now, Dyana is looking forward to being the catalyst for success for her own students. “One of the most striking things about my academic career has been the lack of Latina teachers I’ve had,” she said. “While I’ve loved my teachers, I know there will be little brown girls in my class that I will be that representation for. Being a student also means being a child, grandchild, brother, sister, etc. and I want to give my students my full heart and help my kids with anything they need. I want to be that resource and stability in the child’s life.”
While Dyana’s own background and experiences will inform her teaching, she believes most important part of Teach For America is the coalition it strives to form. “Changing education isn’t about one person,” she said. “It's about coming together, and no matter who you are or where you come from you are doing us a great service by joining Teach For America, and that’s what matters.”