Through hard work and dedication, Scottsdale Unified School District student Lilly Tritch has earned an opportunity to fulfill her dreams of becoming a teacher.
Ms. Tritch, a senior at Chaparral High School, has been named a winner of the $20,000 future teacher scholarship provided by the Scottsdale Charros.
I was tingling, all excited,” Ms. Tritch said, describing the phone call she received over spring break that broke the good news to her.
“I came out into the hallway, we all burst into tears. It was really overwhelming — I’m on my way to my future.”
Ms. Tritch’s hard work throughout her elementary, middle and high school years has earned her a spot at Barrett, the Honors College at Arizona State University. In addition to honors academics, the future teacher has been involved in a number of clubs including an art club, the breakfast club and national honor society.
“My counselor recommended it (the scholarship) for me,” Ms. Tritch said. “Finding out it was for educators was even better.”
The Scottsdale Charros established the Future Teacher Scholarship as a means to encourage Scottsdale Unified School District seniors to pursue a bachelor’s degree in education from one of the state’s three universities or Grand Canyon University.
The $20,000 scholarship is awarded to students who can demonstrate outstanding achievement in academic activities, as well as non-academic activities during their high school years.
Ms. Tritch wants to be an elementary school teacher, she says. Through part-time work she has some experience leading a preschool classroom, and one of her own teachers made a lasting impact on her that she holds on to too, she noted.
“I did love some of my teachers — one of my kindergarten teachers, she made every student feel so special,” she said. “She gathered photos of each student and gave it to them on their graduation day going into grade school. A teacher isn’t just there to be a teacher, they care for you and are an influential teacher.”
Working part-time as a preschool teacher, Ms. Tritch says she has learned through her co-workers what it’s like to be a teacher.
“I’ve really taken the step of being an actual teacher as I led a classroom over the summer,” she said. “I got the whole experience, really, in over a year and a half of working. I didn’t realize I wanted to be an actual teacher until I was in the classroom and faced with the children.”
Ms. Tritch says as she looks forward to becoming a future Sun Devil, but she is also scared for the change.
“I like routine, and get in a habit, I like to know who I’m with — with something completely new it just scares me,” she explained.
However, when she becomes a future teacher Ms. Tritch says she would want her future students to know that she is always there for them.
“Other than being a great teacher, I want them to know that I’m there almost as their second parent,” she said. “To help them grow, and be with them.”
Scottsdale Independent Northeast Valley News Services Editor Melissa Fittro can be e-mailed at email@example.com or can be followed on Twitter at twitter.com/melissafittro.