Today's spotlight feature is 2019 corps member Heath Koch. Heath is a junior from Carrollton, Texas, majoring in Chemical Engineering. On campus, he has most notably been involved in Student Engineering Council, Men Can End, Camp Kesem, Steel Pan Ensemble, and Texas Blazers, where he will serve as the Vice chair of membership next year.
Heath grew up attending an upper middle class school that he was zoned to. If he had lived only two streets over, he would have grown up in a much worse school system. When he began serving as an Avid tutor for a middle school in his community that served minority, low-income students, Heath was shocked at the lack of resources the students were learning in and the difference in school quality within his community.
Through Texas Blazers, he has continued to serve as an Avid tutor helping students study for the TSI test. Heath says that one of the most difficult aspects of this experience has been watching intelligent students that he works with continually failing standardized tests, not because they do not know the information, but because they are ESL students and lack the vocabulary to understand the questions.
These hands-on experiences fighting inequity have made Heath passionate about the work that TFA does. After his two-year commitment in the classroom, Heath plans to follow his passion wherever it takes him. He added that he may stay in the classroom or pursue a career in consulting.
Heath enjoyed the application process as it made him get introspective. "The questions made my dig into my personal beliefs and really consider how I would be in a low-income classroom. Heath's advice for future corps members is to "really think about why you want to do this. Take into consideration the purpose of TFA & how this applies to you."
We're looking forward to seeing Heath have an impact in the classroom next year! Stay tuned for more 2019 Corps Member features each week. If you have any interest in applying, talk to our Recruitment Manager, Jorge Galan. He can be reached at Jorge.Galan@teachforamerica.org.