ENMU Secondary Education Student Has a Love for English

Lucy Martinez
Lucy Martinez

ENMU Secondary Education Student Has a Love for English

"I want to be in the middle school classroom, bringing alive the world of literature and English in the same way my teachers have done for me. Although the classroom does need seriousness on some occasions, it does not have to be boring," says Lucy Martinez, a student at Eastern New Mexico University majoring in English with Secondary licensure.

"I used to think that if I was not famous, my life would never be as great as it could. As I grew up, that idea started to fade, especially when I had the opportunity to help in a reading class and a middle school classroom. Without that experience, I would have never understood what my professor once said, 'Teachers are a different type of famous.' Eyes are on you all the time as an educator, and that is the exact challenge I want and am preparing for," she avers.

Before her senior year, Lucy did not have an interest in the language and had failed an English class during her sophomore year. She did not realize her love for writing until she took two English courses during her senior year. She says, "That year I had such amazing English teachers that reminded me how fun and great languages are. Without them, I do not think I would have known what to major in."

Ultimately, Lucy hopes to become a principal or superintendent in her field. She is also planning to obtain her doctorate in English for secondary language and become a professor at a university. Lucy explains, "Being a superintendent seems like something I would extremely excel at, as I think it's important that superintendents understand what a classroom is like as the teacher before they go up on a podium. I think I will know when it is time to pursue that dream, but for now, I am not ready."

This past summer, Lucy volunteered the high school she attended by assisting the volleyball coach in the classroom. She was on the Dean's List in the fall of 2018 and the spring of 2018. The sophomore is involved in the Desperate Optimists, an English club where students workshop creative writings. At open mic nights, Lucy shares poetry and writings that she creates during workshops. She is also a member of the honors society, Kappa Delta Pi, and of VOICES, a club for education students.

While she has been highly successful at Eastern, Lucy shares that she struggled in high school, failing several classes and graduating with a 2.9 GPA. One of her high school teachers mentioned Eastern to her, a school that accepted her faults, provided her with the program she wanted and gave her a cost-efficient education. Once Lucy knew about ENMU, it was the only university to which she applied.

"Many teachers that I admired in high school have crossed paths with ENMU in their lives, so I had to see what the buzz was about. I am ecstatic that I took that leap of faith because I do not believe I would have been as sure as I am now about my major. Without coming to ENMU, I would never be able to tell students or past peers in high school that if you did not accomplish it in high school, you sure can do it in college," Lucy says.

Lucy says her favorite part about being a Greyhound is serving as a supporter of her peers. She states, "When I came to ENMU, I was another shy freshman, but as the days started to pass, I realized how everyone on campus understands that we are all going through the struggle in our own ways. People who I do not know will ask me for help, or be open to me asking them for help. As Troy Bolten said, 'We are all in this together!' and everyone here feels that way.

"My favorite place on campus is the Jack Williamson Liberal Arts Building. I could sit in there all day, as it is a great place where I have truly felt welcomed. The café inside JWLA, Zime, is so good, and their soups are to die for. If you don't find me at JWLA, I am probably somewhere on campus getting food or studying," the Greyhound says.

While at Eastern, Lucy has had several professors who have been influential for her education, including Dr. Kathleen Wagner, Yetta Massey, Beatriz Villa and Dr. Michael Shaughnessy. She says that these individuals have all assisted her during her first two years here. While challenging her to learn, they opened her mind to knowledge and insight in the field of education. Lucy hopes that they see how impactful they were on her education when they see her on the graduating stage.

The education classes that Lucy has taken at ENMU have been among her favorite courses. The education program and the people involved have shown her how passionate teaching can and should be. Lucy's favorite course has been "Introduction to American Sign Language." Last semester, she took it as an elective to fulfill her scholarship requirements but ended up thoroughly enjoying the class. "I learned a lot of the hard-of-hearing culture. I imagine the students in my classroom will be diverse, and, with the knowledge of ASL, I can help students feel more involved, no matter what level of hearing they are," she says.

To other education students, Lucy gives the following advice: "Becoming a teacher is stressful, but it is worth it. Being able to impact student's lives in ways where they will remember you years after your lives have crossed paths is heartwarming. I would also like to tell students who want to become educators to get used to collaborating and never forget your own school experience. To be the best educator, we must be great followers!"

Lucy was born and raised in Gallup, New Mexico, with her seven older siblings. Her eldest brother and sister are 37 years old. Her mother is a retired veteran of the military and a retired employee of McKinley County's medical supply center. Her father is self-employed as a builder and also works as the athletic director at a small catholic school in Gallup.