Congratulations to 2015 Nancy Larson Scholars!

LaShuna AndersonLaShuna Anderson
Texas A&M University – Commerce

“My sister had health and learning issues while I was growing up so when I played teacher with her, I was never sure how to keep her interested. Now that I am educated in children with exceptionalities, I understand that differentiated learning can better keep students like my sister engaged. I believe that the experience with my sister inspired me even further in my upcoming career.”


Brandon IshikataBrandon Ishikata
San Diego State University

“I am so passionate about pursuing a teaching career because I want to encourage students to pursue their dreams. I want to instill creativity, confidence and passion with all my students.”


Symone JamesSymone James
University of Connecticut

“As long as I can remember I have always wanted to teach. My earliest memories are from before kindergarten when my father taught me and my sister to read. After coming to America from Jamaica, my parents really supported and taught me the importance of education.”


Chyteal JonesChyteal Jones
Mercer University

“I had a hard time finding a direction when I was young. After I graduated high school, I went to trade school and became an electrician. Then after 15 years I went to college and got a business degree. I was successful, but still seeking ‘something.’ Then I had my children and taught them to read and count before preschool. I really saw a fire come alive inside me when I saw them grasp information and apply knowledge. I knew teaching is where I belonged.”


Rylan LaudanRylan Laudan
Kansas State University

“The experiences I’ve had with organizations such as 4-H, FFA and Boys and Girls Club have taught me a great deal about helping students and serving as a positive role model. As a male, I recognize the need for many young boys and girls to have a positive male role model and I believe that is a responsibility of mine going into the teaching profession.”


Sahyra LujanSahyra Lujan
Kansas State University

“My goals as an educator are to help English as a Second Language students to be comfortable in their classrooms and not feel ashamed of their culture but embrace their culture. Teachers are supposed to be caring, respectful, patient, professional, culturally competent, and knowledgeable. I plan to be that teacher.”


Danny "Marty" RobinsonDanny “Marty” Robinson
University of Indianapolis

“For me the word ‘teacher’ means: commitment, compassion, responsibility and understanding. My goal is to uplift students so that they can achieve anything!”


Ivan TietIvan Tiet
California State University, Sacramento

“Through my own personal experiences and in working with youth, I know the challenges children face, whether it be language, culture, poverty, disabilities, bullying, family troubles, and so forth. I want to address whatever issues come up as best I can so my students can achieve their dreams.”


Joanna WaltersJoanna Walters
University of West Florida

“I was facing the beginning of a new home, new language and new school. I luckily entered a magnet school and was surrounded by passionate and caring teachers. School was my solace and I remember telling teachers, secretaries and janitors that I was going to be a teacher.”