Winning Scholarship Essays written by Daniel Heras, scantron scholarship winner
Daniel dreams of becoming a teacher to inspire students to learn in the same way that he has been inspired by his teachers. In this Winning Scholarship Essay, he describes one of the most meaningful experiences he has had in high school through the Environmental Science Club, which took him to real life locales to learn about science not from textbooks but from seeing, touching and experiencing science frst hand. Student body president and captain of the baseball team at Woodrow Wilson High School in Los Angeles, Daniel won more than $17,000 in scholarships to attend U.C. Berkeley.
Inspired to Teach
In the ninth grade, I was introduced to the Environmental Science Club and to Mr. Quezada, my science teacher and advisor. Outside of the classroom and through the club, I saw an entirely different side to education. The science club took me to far and exotic destinations, such as the Islands of Hawaii, the underwater wonderlands of the Cayman Islands, the temperate climates of the Florida Everglades, the deep blue waters of the Mexican Riviera and the High Sierras of Northern California.
We learned that one cannot experience these things in class behind a small cramped desk made for 10-year-olds. I was able to hold, smell and sometimes taste, foreign artifacts. I have seen the migration patterns of the Humpback whale, have become a certifed scuba diver, learned to surf, rock climb, snowboard and trail the mountains of the world, all while learning about science. Our trips have also given me the life skills of communication, learning to intermingle with people of the world.
It only took a year to see that teaching was my future. Why would someone not want to get paid for helping his or her community, to enlighten the future generation and best of all, do the things that bring joy to one’s life all while on the job? I was given experiences I would not have received anywhere else, and I want to do the same for the next generation to come. There is a world that one can hold, smell and sometimes taste. I want to show people that there really is a world out there beyond the pictures in textbooks.
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