STEM Changed My Education
Storyteller: Brandon (he/him/his), 28, New Mexico
“Hello, my name is Brandon, and I am a Native American from the southwest region of the United States. Growing up, I had little to no influence to focus on my education; I did not find joy in education, mainly reading due to a speech impediment and educations delays, especially during read-out-loud days. The fear of talking and sounding uneducated in public affected my academic progress, and teachers started to pass me on from grade to grade. It wasn’t until I started middle school that my attitude towards education changed. During my 6th grade year, I began my first classes dedicated to science and mathematics. As I began to read textbooks, my ability to comprehend the material sharply increased, and my confidence did as well. I was able to talk in front of my peers and teachers.
My newfound enjoyment for education resulted from my first real introduction to STEM-based education. At this moment in my life, I felt that I was capable of getting an education. I always enjoyed my STEM classes from middle school throughout my senior year of high school. Upon entering college, I found more of an interest in the soft sciences combined with my general science base classes. My major in college was psychology, as the brain is the most exciting organ of the body. My common knowledge from STEM allowed me to succeed in college, especially during mathematics classes related to my psychology major.
I currently work at Explora in Albuquerque, New Mexico. Explora is a non-profit child science museum. Our company is designed to enrich child education and their understanding of STEM at a young age and encourage adults to find the joy of STEM education. I enjoy working at Explora as I can help encourage those of all ages to find joy in STEM areas. You never know, my one little interaction today may influence someone to decide to start a STEM-based career in the future.”