The 2023 Dr. J Student Teacher Fellows: Mason Boyle, Montserrat Gonzales Vega, Olivia Nguyen, Allie Schibsted, and Judith Sosa

The 2023 Dr. J Student Teacher Fellows: Mason Boyle, Montserrat Gonzales Vega, Olivia Nguyen, Allie Schibsted, and Judith Sosa

The Teacher Education Program at the Gevirtz Graduate School of Education at UC Santa Barbara has named its 2023 Dr. J Student Teacher Fellows: Mason Boyle, Montserrat Gonzales Vega, Olivia Nguyen, Allie Schibsted, and Judith Sosa. All of the fellows are pursuing a Multiple Subject Teaching Credentials and M.Eds.

The Dr. J Student Teacher Fellowships honor the legacy of Dr. Richard Jamgochian, former Director of the Teacher Education Program. From 1968-1991, “Dr. J” was an enthusiastic and tireless advocate for teacher education. Recipients of the fellowship show promise as future teachers and exemplify the ideals that Dr. J promoted. According to Dr. J, learning to teach should be a collegial endeavor. He judged teaching to be both a science and an art, and he encouraged teachers to engage in on-going self-examination and professional development to maintain skills in both endeavors.

Montserrat González Vega is a Teacher Education Program candidate pursuing a Masters of Education, as well as a Multiple Subject Teaching Credential with a Bilingual Authorization in Spanish. Originally from Mexico City, Montserrat obtained a first-class B.A. in International Media and Communication Studies at the University of Nottingham in England. Before moving to California to begin her Master’s Program, Montse had been employed as a Teaching Assistant for four years at an international Apple school in Mexico City, which was where she was able to nurture and consolidate her commitment to pursuing a career as an educator. Montse is excited to continue working to inspire a life-long love of learning in her students with the hope that they might never stop striving to better understand the world we live in, themselves, and one another.

Olivia Nguyen is pursuing her M.Ed. and MST credential. She graduated from UCSB in 2021 with a B.S. in Psychological and Brain Studies and a minor in Asian American Studies. She decided to return to UCSB for her Master’s Degree and teaching credential because she wants to become the teacher she always needed during her elementary education. As an Asian American student who was born and raised in a small Massachusetts suburb, Olivia knows how important it is for BIPOC individuals to feel like they belong in their educational environments in order to succeed in their academics. She is extremely excited and grateful to be on this path with TEP to learn how to provide her future students with a safe and equitable education.

Allie Schibsted is a graduate student pursuing her Master of Education, Multiple Subject Teaching Credential and Bilingual Authorization. Allie graduated from Whitworth University in 2017 and since then has been able to serve children and youth in a capacity of roles. Allie was drawn away from the nonprofit world and into teaching in public schools after a life-changing experience she had serving with AmeriCorps in Oakland, CA in 2018-2019. She served at a bilingual elementary school as an Academic Intervention Specialist and loved seeing the growth in her students throughout that year. After that experience, Allie decided she wanted to switch careers in the pursuit of creating more equitable educational experiences for all children. This past year she served at another bilingual elementary school in Oakland as first a substitute teacher and then a 4th grade teacher. Allie is excited to be in the Teacher Education Program at UCSB and can’t wait for what the rest of the year holds.

Mason Boyle is an M.Ed. candidate, pursuing her Multiple Subject Teaching Credential. Mason earned her Bachelor of Arts in History with an Educational Studies Minor from University of California, Santa Barbara. During her undergraduate studies, Mason worked in various educational settings, including teaching a first and third grade pod during school closures, volunteering as a pre-professional at Foothill Elementary School and Dos Pueblos High School, and working as a peer mentor to incoming transfer students at UC Santa Barbara. As a transfer student herself, Mason spent a year at Santa Barbara City College prior to transferring to UC Santa Barbara. During her time at city college, Mason worked as a tutor in the English Second Language program. As a Goleta local, Mason has a deep fondness for our local school districts and hopes to remain here to teach in the area she grew up and calls home. Mason aspires to create a classroom that is rooted in community, curiosity, and diversity. She is passionate about fostering an inclusive and collaborative classroom environment where students feel welcome and supported.

Judith Sosa went to a beautiful community college in the bay area called West Valley College, then transferred to UC Santa Barbara to finish her bachelor’s in communications by 2022. She is working on her Master’s in Education and Multiple Subjects Teaching credential. Her interest in teaching was sparked as she reflected on how her past teachers have accommodated her language needs and how that greatly impacted her motivation and confidence in school. Judith believes students' languages and cultures bring incredible value and perspective to the classroom. She hopes to elevate individuality and integrate an asset-based approach when teaching and learning from her students. She began her experience working with students at a preschool in Saratoga which focused on learning through play, and a swim school in San Jose. Judith loved the "aha" moments that students experienced, whether learning a new swimming skill or experiencing social-emotional growth. She has lived in California her whole life, so she loves to enjoy the beautiful weather and hiking spots this state provides. She loves hiking in the misty Santa Cruz region where the redwoods tower over your head. Judith is excited to enter the field of education and provide students with spaces in which students are being challenged and their identities are valued.