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Students & Communities

What it Means to Serve Your Community

David Nungaray (San Antonio ‘10) shares what it means to immerse yourself in the community you are serving as a teacher and leader.

By David Nungaray

January 29, 2019

On Serving My Community

When David Nungaray (San Antonio ‘10) joined the corps, he knew he wanted to teach in a community where he could use his bilingual skills to build deep connections with students and families. As an alum, his experience in the classroom continues to fuel his passion for serving his community.

When I applied to Teach For America, I knew I wanted to work somewhere in the southwest. I'd heard incredible things about the city of San Antonio, and I also knew that there would be a place where I could use the Spanish that had stayed with me.

Teach for America, especially here in San Antonio, some of the work we were doing was both about how to have high academic standards for students, while also recognizing the need for us to be culturally responsive to the community that we were serving. It's one thing to drive in and out of a community every single day, go to a school building and then leave. And it's another thing to really immerse yourself in the community that you're serving.

The way that I think about Teach For America's mission and vision is how do we bring some of the strongest leaders into the classroom to really help kids who are oftentimes underserved, so that then wherever they goeducation, law or counseling or bio and medicinethat they have the opportunity to always carry the stories of their students and the communities that they served with them.