Teacher Feature: Ms. Peña

A woman with dark hair smiles at the camera.
Photo courtesy of Ms. Peña

English and Intensive Reading teacher, Ms. Vanessa Peña, has started her first year at Fort Lauderdale High School. She taught English and a peer mentoring program at her former school for nine years. 

In high school, her English teacher inspired her to be a better writer, which led to her being an English teacher herself.

“I would complain that I would get sleepy whenever I had to read or write,” Ms. Peña said, “Look at me now!”

In her high school years, Ms. Peña was a part of the Urban Teaching Academy Program (UTAP), where she found her interest in teaching and interacting with young kids and loved it. 

“Then, when I became a teacher, I learned as much from my students as they did from me each year,” said Ms. Peña. “Even now, I find myself learning new technology tricks from students regularly.”

Ms. Peña works to give her students important life skills and forms relationships with her students.

“Seeing students grow, both academically and in their own lives, is very rewarding. You also get to work with great people when you’re a teacher,” said Ms. Peña.

On the weekends, Ms. Peña likes going to the beach, taking walks with her dog, and enjoying delicious food.

This article is part of our series on new teachers in the 2020-21 school year. To see the full list of new teachers, click here.

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