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Testimonials from Mentors

The following are testimonials received from our mentors. Please share your feedback by emailing us at   mathceo@math.uci.edu

Dear Dr. Pantano, I would like to thank you for the opportunity to be part of this amazing program. It has been a very rewarding experience, and I truly enjoy it. I am looking forward to the next quarter when we resume our Math CEO meetings. Reflecting on the program... I wouldn't be honest if I say it is easy to teach middle school students. Getting their attention and keeping them focused on the task is a challenge by itself. I understand that they are coming after their school day and are tired already and I do everything (sometimes even use humor) to make sure they don't feel overwhelmed but see our meetings as a fun math activity rather than studying. Also, working on the problems without giving away the answers and too many hints requires another set of skills. I really enjoy asking them guiding questions that lead to answers. At the end, seeing the excitement on their faces when they find the solution to the problem makes all my efforts worthwhile. I believe I am making a difference in their life by instilling confidence that they can achieve any goal they set before themselves. During the break, when we have a presentation on careers, I always ask my students what they see themselves doing after high school and I encourage them to go for it. I want to see Math CEO grow and prosper, including more schools and having more volunteers, as it has a noble goal of giving disadvantageous kids the confidence that they can go to college and become any professional they choose.   ✏   Aghavni

I joined Math CEO during Fall Quarter 2015 when I saw the email from the School of Education. I really wanted a chance to teach math to students, because it is one of my favorite subjects. Of course, it had been 3 years since I had done any math, and all I did was teach my freshman friends calculus. When I first came in to tutor, I was scared; there was no telling what it would be like for me to work with middle schoolers. The questions were difficult and I spent hours in the night trying to find the best way to explain the material, but implementing those explanations was much more difficult than I had ever imagined. That very first meeting changed everything for me about my teaching methods and motivation. I’ve come to every tutoring session ever since to learn more about myself and to help these students get ready for college. My favorite moment so far was when I came into the wrong room for tutoring, and some of the seventh graders shouted over to me to be their tutor. I told them I wasn’t scheduled for the room that day, and I left to my assigned room. We only meet once a week which makes me sad, because that moment meant a lot to me. I feel like I made a connection with these kids and maybe inspire them to do better in math.   ✏   Edward

I have worked as a tutor and a teaching assistant, but I think that being a MATH CEO mentor has added valuable contribution to my goal of becoming a teacher. I get to explore working with middle school students, whose personalities and skills can be very difficult to gauge. The coordinators of the program were extremely nice and professional. I recommend this awesome program (flexible yet structured) to anybody who plans on working with kids at the middle school level prior to enrolling in a credential program... or even after completing the credential program.   ✏   Mentor

Every time I participate in MathCEO I have a great time! The teaching experience is amazing, the kids are amazing, the the MathCEO team is amazing! It is so great to do something fun and rewarding. I love working with MathCEO because I know the students are learning math and that they are all capable of such greatness! I can't wait to participate this coming quarter!   ✏   Mentor