"Education does not transform the world. Education changes people. People change the world." This quote attributed to Paulo Freire sums up my teaching philosophy and pedagogical approach. I teach because I believe education is the most essential tool in addressing social problems and resulting in constructive social change, especially beginning at the individual level; and because the reality of the world is whole, my teaching is framed by a multidimensional critical lens that coalesces perspectives and applications from, within, and across a number of disciplines. For me, teaching for change is not a singular, unicentric action. Students are the imperative "co-activists" or "co-agents," if you will, of this integrative, ever-evolving, and intergenerational process of generating, disseminating, and applying knowledge. Better yet, it is a mutually-beneficial symbiotic process. In the words of Gibran, it is the "faith [and] lovingness" of a true teacher that awakens the inherent capacities of her/his students. We learn and apply such knowledge to achieve transformation within ourselves, our neighborhoods and communities, and our world. To hold up a mirror to your students and show them the nobility that you see . . . that is what keeps me keeps me coming back, what gives me faith. I have the highest confidence in my students, their varying capacities and potentials, and diverse learning styles and perspectives. I look forward to EVERY class. I am constantly challenged to elevate my role and service as an educator and a mentor within and beyond the confines of the classroom, because there truly are no "walls." Thus, I, too, am a learner. I am always humbled and ever grateful for the chance to be and do better, and even if students do not always take me seriously when I say this, I am genuinely thankful for all they continue to teach me.
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