For our first annual Student of the Year, we selected Theresa Valdez. We awarded her with a small scholarship for her to use for her future college endeavors. Theresa receives her tutoring in Norco. Theresa just graduated this school year from Centennial High School; we have been working with her since April 2013. She has worked with Laura, from the beginning, in order to improve her understanding of math and she also worked with a few other tutors, this year and last, to improve her understanding of history. Theresa has been a dream student to work with right from the start.
From the moment we started working with Theresa and her mom, Pat Martinez, we knew there was something special about this student and her mother. We were in awe of how invested they both were in Theresa’s academic future. We also soon learned that Theresa was the type of student that really liked to challenge herself. Throughout her academic career, she took multiple AP classes while participating in extracurricular activities that helped her stay focused, very busy, and helped her become the well-rounded young woman she is now. Like we do with all our students, we wanted to make sure we would do the most we could to help her achieve her academic goals. In order to help her meet her goals we had to match her up with equally ambitious tutors that were highly intelligent, great role models, and very passionate about their subject matter; we managed to do just that.
Theresa began working with our tutor, Laura, right from the start. Laura was there to guide Theresa through her math courses and to help her gain a better understanding of the subject. Although math was not Theresa’s favorite subject, by any means, Laura managed to make math fun and relatable for Theresa. Theresa and Laura seemed to be a perfect match; they enjoyed each others company and understood each other’s learning and teaching styles very well. Laura describes Theresa as being “dedicated, independent, diligent and creative. She loves art and applies her abilities to any school project.” She added, “We have had many laughs over the years and I will never forget her or her family”.
Although Laura will miss working with Theresa, she is happy for her and proud of everything she has accomplished these past few years. Laura said, “She may not be the greatest at math, but she never gives up working on a topic until she has mastered it. I am very proud that she has become more confident in her own abilities and does not require my help as often. I am also proud of her for getting into my Alma Matter, Cal Poly San Luis Obispo, even though she made her own choice to go to the University of Portland”. Clearly, not only did Laura play a significant role in Theresa’s academic career, but Theresa also had an impact on Laura. Their mutual love of learning helped them bond and form a real respect for one another.
For history, Theresa had a few tutors. During her sophomore year, we originally paired her up with a tutor, whom although intelligent and knowledgeable, was unable to meet Theresa’s tutoring needs; therefore, we ended up agreeing that it was best to make a change. The second tutor we assigned her for her AP US History class, Jonathan, was a much better fit. We worked closely with our tutor, Jonathan, with Theresa, her mother, and her history teacher to come up with a plan of attack in order to ensure that Theresa was getting the most out of her history class and the tutoring sessions. After coming up with some ideas, we finally seemed to find the key to helping Theresa succeed in her history class.
During her senior year, Theresa took IB Latin American History. We struggled a bit to find her a tutor that we felt was qualified enough and that would be able to help her succeed in her history class. We eventually were able to find the perfect tutor, Jim, a Latin American History college professor at UC Riverside. We were thrilled when he agreed to tutor Theresa; we knew there was no one who could better help her than Jim, and he did just that.
Jim really enjoyed working with Theresa. He describes Theresa as, “a very disciplined student. She already has the organizational abilities and disciplined approach that most students at college do not have. She is above first year college students”. He went on to say that she has greater intellectual maturity than many first year college students. Additionally, he felt that their tutoring sessions were great due to Theresa’s genuine curiosity of the subject. Although, history was also not a favorite subject of Theresa’s, she always showed up to the sessions ready to learn as much as she could and with an open and inquisitive mind. They both showed genuine respect for one another and they made the most out of their tutoring sessions together.
Theresa is an exceptional young woman; she is truly one of a kind. We were very fortunate to get the opportunity to work with her, and her mother, for over 2 years. Throughout those two years, we have been extremely impressed with everything that Theresa has accomplished. In September 2013, we selected her as our Student of the Month. Additionally, a year after we started working with her, we also dedicated a blog article to her and her silver medal win at the RIMS Inland Science and Engineering Fair. Finally, this year we have learned that she was accepted into many colleges, including her dream college, the University of Portland. We also learned that she received a $72,000 scholarship to the University of Portland. We could not be prouder or more excited for Theresa and her family.
It’s rare when we work with students that are so focused, motivated, and know what path to take in order to achieve all of their goals; Theresa is one of those rare students. We asked Theresa’s tutors if they had any advice for Theresa, for her future academic career; Laura said, “My only advice would be for her to continue to be organized, study hard, go to office hours and have some fun”. Similarly, James said, “Theresa already has the college skills she needs to succeed”. Essentially, as long as Theresa continues on the path that she has been on, she is fated to succeed and to achieve all of her academic goals. We just hope to continue to be updated on all the wonderful successes she is destined for in her future.
On June 15th, 2015, we had the honor of interviewing both Theresa and Pat at their home. To learn more about these wonderful women, click play and enjoy.
Thank you Theresa and thank you Pat. We wish you both much future success and we hope you stay in touch.
If you feel that your child has improved in school, due to the tutoring they have received from us, and you would like them to be featured as our Student of the Month, please send us an email letting us know how your child has improved. We hope you can help us show how proud we are of each one of our students.
We provide tutoring in Corona, Norco, Eastvale, Chino Hills, Chino, Mira Loma, Alta Loma, Ontario, Rancho Cucamonga, and all the surrounding cities. We have students from Sky Country Elementary, Oxford Preparatory Academy, Heritage Oak Private Education, Townsend Junior High School, Roosevelt High School, Alta Loma High School, Norco High School, Centennial High School, Chino Hills High School, Ontario Christian High School and Ayala High School.