Meet Alumna Lisa Hua ’14, Middle School Math Teacher- Pioneer Valley Chinese Immersion Charter School
Name: Lisa Hua
Class Year: 2014
Current Title/Employer: Middle School Math Teacher / Pioneer Valley Chinese Immersion Charter School
Graduate Degrees (if applicable): Master of Art in Teaching (M.A.T.)
In one sentence, what does your job entail?
I get to get to know kids, guide them to learn more, in different ways, and get better as people as well as learn about myself everyday.
What planned and unplanned events connected you to your industry and your first employer after Holy Cross?
I knew I was going to go into teaching at graduation because as a Junior, I interned at the Nativity School of Worcester and by Spring of my Senior Year, I had been accepted into their Teaching Fellowship program. I was so excited, and also knew I would be able to pursue my Masters in Teaching as part of that program.
How did you learn/decide it was a good fit for you?
I knew after interning there for a summer and then continuing to volunteer during my Senior Year. I felt that it was such a great place for the kids and was such a close-knit community, which is what I’m all about and what I wanted to be part of during my time on campus.
What were you involved in when you were on campus?
I was involved with a few things on campus. I was a work-study student, so some years I worked at Cool Beans, CrossRoads and the Deli, and in my last couple of years I worked at the Cantor Art Gallery and the Music Library. I also worked as a Resident Assistant for my sophomore and Junior years and was Head RA in Lehy my Senior Year. For all 4 years, I was on the EBoard for LASO (Latin American Student Organization), I really enjoyed all the things I was involved with, it really shaped my outlook on time-management, balancing finances, and making sure to diversify all your experiences on campus.
What was your major and how did it affect your career decisions?
My career decisions were not highly reliant on my major. I was a Chinese major and a Chemistry minor. I chose those 2 things because I really enjoyed both and both played a huge role in who I was becoming at HC. They both taught me to not only learn what those areas of study have to offer, but to really take a look at the culture of each and how that plays together to make me as a person. As I mentioned before, I started being interested in teaching as an intern and volunteer, and I was interested because I was able to branch out and be more part of the community, on campus and beyond.
What are one or two skills that you developed at Holy Cross that you use in your work?
So many! I use time management all the time and it keeps me sane! If I wasn’t so involved on campus while I was at Holy Cross, I don’t think I would have ever been able to manage teaching at a charter school with an extended day program, going to Graduate School and being able to still have a social life all at the same time. I also learned how to really think outside the box and be resourceful, which I use all the time in the classroom and in my personal life. If I did everything conventionally or because I thought I had to as opposed to because it made sense (even if it sounds crazy!), then I would not have been able to experience everything that the unexpected brings. Nothing ventured, nothing gained!
What advice do you have for students on campus today?
My best advice would be to work hard and finish what you start. I have had many people who have motivated me to see through to the end of things on campus and since I’ve graduated. Even if you are not sure if it’s for you, you never know how everything can work out. Don’t think you are wasting time, think you are gaining experiences and be proud that you saw the end. If it doesn’t work out after you’ve met a logical goal, then you can go in a different direction. If you see it through and it changes your thinking on it, you might have found your calling, or at least are getting closer.