Resident Name: Audrey Gutierrez
Region: Denver Metro Cohort
Placement School/District: Creativity, Challenge, Community (C3), Denver Public Schools
Mentors/Grade: Robin McCarthy & Linda Durgin, 1st Grade
With a background in cultural anthropology and nonprofit administration, Audrey Gutierrez knew she wanted to work in a nonprofit with kids. When she came across Denver Math Fellows, an urban education fellowship where corps members support students in math, Gutierrez knew this would be a great opportunity. This year of service would allow her to work with students in small groups settings as an entry point into education.
“Overall, I had a really great experience with Math Fellows,” says Gutierrez. “I fell in love with the small group setting and really getting to know my students.”
Building relationships with students became a favorite pastime of Gutierrez’s service year with Math Fellows, and she went on to support after school programming for students with another nonprofit organization. Following an afternoon of homework support and tutoring, Gutierrez began considering different options to get into education.
“I was working with a student one day for the after school program,” shares Gutierrez. “Previously, this student didn’t want to do anything academically. This day, we had free time because of the weather, and she came up to me and asked if I would read with her.”
This moment helped Gutierrez realize that being in the classroom with students was where she wanted to remain. After a close friend was accepted into the PEBC Teacher Residency program , Gutierrez began researching the residency and started her application. Gutierrez is now an elementary resident at C3.
“It’s been really rewarding to take on more of a teaching role and build my confidence,” says Gutierrez. “Math Fellows gives you the platform to have a few students to try teaching styles, learn math curriculum and build number sense. Taking that basis into a large classroom setting in the residency has made the transition into teaching easier.”
Audrey recently accepted a job in Denver Public Schools and will be working in the same community where she completed her service year with Math Fellows.
“My experience with Math Fellows and the PEBC Teacher Residency have both helped shape my teaching philosophy and determine the community where I want to work,” says Gutierrez. “I still try to go back and visit with my students when I can. They’re the reason I’m in teaching now.”