16 Graduating Fitchburg High Seniors Commit to Becoming Teachers in Writing
By Chad Garner
Special to the Sentinel & Enterprise
FITCHBURG -- It was only fitting that during Teacher Appreciation Week, Fitchburg High School made Thursday a day to host a Future Teacher Signing Day in the library.
There were 16 FHS graduating seniors honored to recognize those who are choosing to pursue a career in education in the fall.
“This is so exciting to see that 16 of our graduates are interested in pursuing the education field,” FHS Principal Jeremy Roche said. “Our weekly quote from Henry Adams noted that a teacher’s influence spans an eternity, but I also think of it as a farmer of the mind and spirit. They sow seeds that they often don’t see fully take root, but blossom for years and years to come. I hope that each of our candidates find education a career that they love, and I hope to hire them back at FHS someday.”
Just like an athletic signing day where student-athletes ink a letter of intent to attend and play a sport in college, Thursday marked the debut of highlighting students who hope to one day become teachers.
This new initiative, which also aims to allow others to see teaching as a valuable career worthy of celebration, is supported by the state Department of Elementary and Secondary Education.
“I’m very excited that you have chosen to go into education,” said FPS Assistant Superintendent Paula Giaquinto, while addressing the students.
Those 16 Fitchburg High college-bound students are Madison Alejandro (Worcester State), Desire Alvarado (Mount Wachusett CC), Emma Auger (UMass Amherst), Tyreek Danger (Framingham State), Shayla Gonzalez (Worcester State), Adilane Mendez-Cuevas (Mount Wachusett CC), Arianna Montejo (Fitchburg State), Jada Poland (Worcester State), Yarieles Rodriguez DeLeon (Fitchburg State), Odalys Santos (Fitchburg State), Emerson Scott (UMass Amherst), Emily Sobanek (Fitchburg State), Natacha Santiago Prado (Fitchburg State), Josiah Begor (Clark University), Peter Bragdon (Mount Wachusett CC) and Esmeralda Zepada (Mount Wachusett CC).
The students are excited to head to college and start learning the ways of becoming a teacher.
“I have always wanted to be a teacher, even when I was really little,” said Scott. “I love being with little kids and working with them. I’m really excited to go to UMass and start working toward that profession.”
Begor, who calls teaching “a very impactful occupation,” has wanted to be a teacher since his sophomore year. He made sure to highlight a couple teachers at Fitchburg High that really made a positive impact -- English teacher Deb Morand and music teacher Tabitha Greenlees.
“It was the extra reaching out of these teachers,” he said. “Those two teachers really turned me around because I was leading astray and they straightened out my path.
“I am the product of a public educational system and I’m so grateful for it. I want to give back so much. If it wasn’t for that, who knows the kind of person I would have been? It changed the entire course of my life.”
Garner is the public schools’ communications coordinator.