Meet five bachelor of education students

Jun 21, 2024Jacquelynn Conger
Bachelor of Education

As San Jacinto College launches a new Bachelor of Applied Science in Early Childhood Education degree, meet five of the students currently set to start the program this fall.

Bertha Cortez

Bertha Cortez

Bertha Cortez's journey to the BAS at San Jac has been complicated. Balancing a full-time job with taking care of her two little ones (ages 5 and 2) often leaves her feeling like she has no time for herself or her family.

Bertha was initially working on her education pathway at a university, but when she heard San Jac was offering a Bachelor of Applied Science in Early Childhood Education, she knew she had to transfer back. San Jac is closer to home and more accommodating to her schedule and needs. She also decided to join the program because she works for Pasadena Independent School District, and the two institutions work closely together.

Her dream has always been to become a teacher, inspired by the support she received from her dedicated teacher after moving from Mexico at 12 years old. This journey hasn't been easy, but her supportive parents keep her motivated. She wants to make an impact on students' lives the way her teacher made an impact on her.

After completing her BAS at San Jac, Bertha hopes to get a job in a Pasadena school teaching pre-K, kindergarten, or any grade up to second. She also plans to explore special education since she currently works as a paraprofessional in a SPED classroom and loves helping students with special needs.

Bertha currently holds an associate degree in child development/early childhood education, and two certificates in educational aide and child development/early childhood education, all from San Jacinto College.

Bertha feels fortunate that her parents have been a huge support, and are helping her with her children since she started college at San Jac. She also feels well supported by the San Jac staff. They are happy to assist her and answer her questions. Her schedule is always crazy and busy, but she knows it will all be worth it one day. Bertha loves coffee, listening to music, and going for walks and runs after long days of work, studying, and being a mom. She is grateful to everyone at San Jac for their help and support throughout this journey.

Bianca Gaviria

Bianca Gaviria
Bianca Gaviria's journey in the education field started in 2019 when she began working as a tutor and substitute teacher. During that time, she realized she loved working with children, so in 2021, she began her studies at San Jacinto College. As she was about to complete her Associate of Arts in teaching, she found out that San Jacinto College was offering a bachelor's degree. Bianca decided to stay instead of transferring to a university because of the cost, the support from teachers and staff, and the option to complete her degree mostly online.

Grants from FAFSA and VA funding have covered all her classes and supplies, allowing her to focus fully on her studies.

In her spare time, Bianca enjoys tending to her plants, going to the gym, and playing outdoors with her pets. She currently works part-time as a STEM instructor for a small company, providing lessons in different schools, districts, and community centers, which allows her to work with children from different backgrounds.

After completing her degree, Bianca plans to work on her teaching certification to become a special education teacher.

Maria Cortez

Maria Cortez
Maria Cortez's journey to the BAS program at San Jac has helped prepare her to work with children in the future. Balancing a full-time job and full-time studies has been challenging, but San Jac’s online classes have helped her better manage her time.

Maria chose the Bachelor of Applied Science program at San Jac because it seemed like a more affordable and convenient path to becoming a teacher. Once she completes her degree, she plans to become a classroom facilitator and take her exams to become a certified teacher. Financial aid has been extremely helpful, covering her tuition and books and making this journey possible.

Growing up, it was Maria, her parents, one sister, and one brother. In the first grade, her parents decided to move to the U.S., which was tough at first because the kids had to learn a new language. Thanks to her wonderful teachers, Maria not only learned English but was inspired to become a teacher herself.

She currently works in the Pasadena district as a special education paraprofessional. She started as a substitute teacher, and after two months, she was offered a full-time position. Maria also earned her Associate of Applied Science at San Jac. She loves working with children and watching them grow and learn. She also enjoys spending time with her family and going shopping.

Overall, her time at San Jac has been incredibly rewarding, and Maria can't wait to continue her journey toward becoming a certified teacher.

Patzy Cruz

Patsy Cruz
Patzy Cruz's journey with San Jacinto College began back in 2017. She graduated with an Associate of Applied Science in child development/early childhood in fall 2020. While still in school, she started working full time for Pasadena Independent School District, initially as an educational teacher assistant and later moving up to the administration in the curriculum and instruction department. She graduated with an Associate of Arts in social and behavioral sciences in fall 2023 and continued her journey by enrolling in the Bachelor of Applied Science program.

Joining this program at San Jacinto College offered Patzy numerous benefits, including career advancement, an industry-relevant curriculum, and flexible scheduling. After completing her degree, she hopes to qualify for higher-level positions within the Pasadena school district and further her education with a master's degree to continue building her expertise and advancing her career.

Receiving scholarships has significantly impacted Patzy's educational journey by alleviating financial stress, allowing her to focus more on her studies. Scholarships have played a crucial role in enabling her to pursue and achieve her educational and career goals more effectively.

Patzy is juggling working full time, attending classes, and being a mom of two boys.

Priscilla Alverio

Priscilla Alverio
Priscilla Alverio started her journey in education through the dual credit program at Pasadena Memorial High School. In 2020, she began working as an infant/toddler teacher and completed her first associate degree in early childhood education in 2021. While she enjoyed the early childhood field, she wanted to work in a school setting, so she started as an assistant to the dean at Beta Academy, where she also substituted and taught reading classes. She loves teaching because she believes every interaction is a chance to positively impact a scholar's future. She aims to be the change she wants to see in the world.

After applying to University of Houston-Clear Lake for a bachelor's degree in teaching, Priscilla was advised to take additional transferable classes at San Jacinto College. She then began another associate degree in teaching and became a third grade English, language arts, and reading teacher at Beta Academy. When she learned about the bachelor's degree being offered at San Jacinto College, she found that it was exactly what she needed. She realized she had most of the required classes and it was more affordable than a university, especially as a single parent.

Priscilla loves San Jacinto College's professors, who truly care about their students' education. After completing her degree, she hopes to become a certified teacher, work toward advanced degrees, and eventually run a bilingual school.

She is mother to a 7-year-old son and enjoys spending time outdoors and focusing on her mental and physical health. Her family and friends are very supportive and play a huge part in her life.

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