Merylynn Valencia.PNG

MERYLYNN VALENCIA

Math Teacher

From a young age, I have had a genuine fascination with numbers. I remember getting to school early and my teacher would have extra math worksheets out for me. As I got older I joined math clubs so I could be around people with similar interests, but I noticed that, as a young Latinx girl, there was a lack of people like myself to look up to. Having been raised by immigrant parents, I knew that I needed to push myself into these spaces and become the representation I wanted to see!

I had the wonderful opportunity to tutor Mathematics throughout my high school career. I mainly supported low-income students of color, and I did my best to be a role model for those young girls and boys. I was in the International Baccalaureate program, did track and field, sang in choir, and involved myself in all that I could. I wanted to show these students that there was no specific mold we had to fit into. We could do it all!

Through tutoring in high school, I discovered a passion for Statistics and Mathematics. I got my BS in Statistical Science at the lovely, and always sunny, UC Santa Barbara. During my time there, when I wasn’t singing in my a cappella group or running along the sandy shore, I was doing massive amounts of studying and homework. I realized how important it was to have support in one’s studies and aspirations.

I decided to use my passion for learning as a tool to help students find understanding, fun and enthusiasm within their courses. I believe that math classes can change from sources of anxiety to sources of empowerment and inspiration. To accomplish this, I suit each individual lesson to the unique needs of the student. Once they can move into a conceptual understanding of the material, solving math problems can be satisfying and even fun!

When I’m not drinking coffee and reading articles about women in STEM, you’ll either find me singing at the top of my lungs, running, cooking up some yummy veggie dishes, traveling, or blogging my life away!