Fernando Ramirez, Athletic Department, is a new freshman gym teacher, who previously worked as a fitness instructor at various gyms in the South Bay. He began his career in education as a substitute teacher, and soon realized his passion for involving young people in fitness.
He plans to create a fitness program for the school’s gym department to track students’ health and fitness.
“The great values and high expectations held by this school make for a great teaching experience,” Ramirez said.
John Mackey, Special Education Department, is a new teacher and assistant coach for the school’s varsity football team.
Mackey looks forward to seeing his students improve their academic skills throughout the year. He enjoys the welcoming environment at the school.
“I have been lucky enough to find a job here, and I am looking forward to building relationships with the teachers and students at the school,” Mackey said.
Jonathan Langberg, Science Department, teaches biology and chemistry. He previously worked as a research scientist for seven years.
Langberg often mentored students in research, and soon realized that he enjoyed working with younger scholars, inspiring him to change his career and pursue education. This school year is Langberg’s first official year of teaching and he hopes to establish good relations.
“The thing I like the most about the school is working with the different students,” Langberg said.
Anahit Muradyan, Leland Plus Deparment, teaches math and science, subjects she has taught for more than ten years.
“I am very impressed by this student body’s work ethic,” Muradyan said.
Muradyan received her education and degree in the Soviet Union during the country’s fall in 1991.
“Students here should realize how valuable their education is. In America, nothing stops you from going after your goals except yourself,” Muradyan said.
Carlos Carranza, Custodial Staff, was initially a substitute worker for San José Unified School District, but became a permanent member of the custodial staff this year.
In high school, Carranza worked part-time in a maintenance company, where he was first introduced to custodial duties.
Carranza hopes to one day become the head custodian, so that he can mentor novice custodians who would be taking on his current position.
With every new school year comes a new year of freshmen, new changes within the school and new staff members. Mac Pham, English Department, is a new teacher for ninth and eleventh grade students.
Pham credits his smooth transition into his first teaching job to the school’s supportive student body and staff members.
“Although being a new teacher is hard, all of the other teachers and our administration have been very supportive of me,” Pham said.
Vivian Chien, English and Speech Departments, teaches sophomores and juniors and coaches in Speech and Debate.
Chien taught at Lynbrook High School for six years. Before beginning her job at the school, she took a hiatus in order to raise her newborn daughter.
Chien attended Pomona College, where her professor encouraged her to apply for an internship at a high school nearby.
“I worked for a semester as a teaching intern, and I realized [teaching] was something I enjoyed doing,” Chien said.
Patrice Miramontes, Leland Plus Department, teaches history and English.
She is determined to teach her students skills to help them succeed, and is excited to see how her students grow as the year progresses.
“I love the sense of community here; whether it is a passion for academics or for things outside the classroom, everyone is united,” Miramontes said.
Scott Laumann, Math Department, currently teaches Algebra 1 and Geometry. This is Laumann’s first year as a teacher, after previously earning a business degree.
In his previous job, Laumann worked with the east San Jose Boy’s and Girl’s Club, an after school program for elementary school students; there, he realized how much he enjoyed teaching.
This year Laumann hopes to be involved in school activities and to learn as much as he can from the staff and students.
Mario Ovalles, Custodial Staff, is a new addition to the school staff. This is Ovalles’s first job as a custodian.
For much of his career, Ovalles worked as a mechanic, making and fixing cars. Though much of his time is now occupied with custodial duties, he still works with cars whenever he has free time.
Ovalles enjoys the friendly and welcoming nature of the school, and hopes to become more familiar with the staff and students here.