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Written by: Danielle Muro, Young Women’s Leadership Academy, SA Works High School Summer Intern

The mediocre teacher tells. The good teacher explains. The superior teacher demonstrates. The great teacher inspires.” – William Arthur Ward

An average high school student will tell you that a typical school day consists of long, tedious lessons that seem to have little to no connection of what they may encounter in the real world. We have all learned that hydrogen and oxygen undergo a chemical reaction and form the essential liquid that we consume on a daily basis: Water. But what students do not get to learn about in most cases is HOW these key concepts that seem unimportant are significant to a bigger picture, a picture that will take up much of their adult life: a career.

SA Works is taking action to change that.

An Alamo STEM/ SA Works Educator externship took place on June 13th and June 17th, an event in which teachers were able to explore careers regarding their field of instruction. These four-hour externship sessions connected educators with industry experts and trained educators on how to apply science and mathematics to workforce settings. This valuable information would later be passed onto curious students who question the relevance of information presented within the classroom.

SA Works would like to offer great thanks to the companies that participated in session one of the STEM externships that took place. Companies include the University Health System, San Antonio Food Bank, Enovation Controls, UTSA CEIG, GW Plastics, Lancer, Joeris, SAWS, HEB customer Insights, and USAA.

Thanks to these companies, a chemistry teacher who attended the externship would not answer a curious student questioning the importance of a water bond “Because you need to know it.” Instead, he would connect that common hydrogen and oxygen bond to its importance within the San Antonio Water System. In doing so, a teacher is not merely telling, explaining, or demonstrating conceptual information. A teacher is inspiring a student to consider a career option by connecting that information to a career path. And as it has been philosophized by the wise Mr. Ward, “The great teacher inspires.”

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