Rubeli Alvarez is pursuing a Bachelor of Science in Biology with Secondary Science Licensure and a minor in history at Eastern New Mexico University to help him achieve his dream of becoming a nationally recognized educator and providing professional development for teachers in STEM programs.
He wants to "help as many students as possible and help them find their love for learning.
"Many students become burnt out in middle school or high school, and I feel as if the perfect teacher inspires them to keep furthering their education and pushing their abilities," he explains. "My dreams consist of receiving my very own classroom and welcoming all my new students to their second home."
"I wish to teach educators," he continues. "I plan to be the face of professional development within the state of New Mexico. I dream of going to the state level and developing the science curriculum for many states to follow. I dream of being the future face of education, receiving the Golden Apple Foundation award and being deemed New Mexico Teacher of the Year."
He chose his fields of study because "educators have always had the largest impact in my life. School has always felt like a second home to me, and I have always wished to give students that same feeling. Truthfully, there is no better profession than teaching the youth of the world.
"Additionally, science and history have always fascinated me and kept me so enthralled in school. Science is the foundation of our world, and history marks all accomplishments and progress we have made as a species."
Rubeli was born in Chicago, Illinois, in the suburb of Cicero. He moved to Clovis, New Mexico, at the age of four. He has an older brother, Ramon, and a younger brother, Caleb. His father works at Western Management, a mortgage and finance business in Clovis, and his mother owns a cleaning business.
He chose to attend ENMU because of the "amazing Teacher Education Program, the closeness to home and the affordability."
He enjoys the "sense of community and belonging that the University and students provide."
Rubeli, who earned an associate degree from Eastern in general studies last fall, says his favorite class at Eastern so far was either EDUC 2116 or SPED 300.
He explains, "EDUC 2116 allowed me to see the classroom not only in the secondary level but also the elementary level. It was amazing interacting with students of all ages and seeing teachers in their own environment after COVID-19 took its effect.
"SPED 300 gave insight on a side of education that many people forget about regarding students with special needs," he continues. "Dr. Michael Shaughnessy also does an amazing job and explains his points and the material in a clear, concise and hilarious manner."
Professors that have mentored Rubeli include Dr. Kathleen Wagner and Dr. Matthew Vetterly. He shares, "Each of these professors has played especially important roles in not only navigating the Teacher Education Program and answering any questions but were also people I could rely on and ask for help regarding professional development and personal goals."
Rubeli's favorite place on campus is the Golden Student Success Center (GSSC)." I absolutely love the atmosphere, the tutoring opportunities and the comfortable environment to sit, study and complete schoolwork," he says.
The dean's list student is the treasurer for the ENMU Educators Rising Student Chapter and a member of Kappa Delta Pi. He holds a full-time job as a shift manager at Taco Villa in Clovis.
Upcoming projects for Rubeli include working with Ms. Pat Carden with the MC^2 program at New Mexico State University for professional development regarding education in the STEM field and joining the Breakthrough Summer Teaching Program, where he will teach at the secondary level in Twin Cities, Minnesota.
He offers advice to students looking to pursue a similar academic path: "If you are choosing to go down the STEM route, set aside time to study and ensure that you understand all the material being presented. Regarding the education part of my field of study, be open-minded and surround yourself with everything related to education."
Rubeli's hobbies include collecting vinyl records and CDs, listening to "a lot of music" and taking long drives around town.
Rubeli with New Mexico Educators Rising state ambassadors and ENMU chapter officers and advisors at the Educators State Conference in Albuquerque, New Mexico.