UCSB’s Gevirtz School awards five Dr. J Student Teacher Fellowships
to outstanding masters degree candidates
The Dr. J Student Teacher Fellowship honors the legacy of Dr. Richard Jamgochian, former Director of the Teacher Education Program. From 1968-1991 Dr. Jamgochian, or “Dr. J” as he was affectionately known, was an enthusiastic and tireless advocate for teacher education in general and for the UCSB Teacher Education Program (TEP) in particular. Colleagues credit his personal management style for building and refining TEP, which prepared more than 5,000 teachers during his tenure and was cited by the California Commission on Teacher Credentialing in 1991 as “an exemplary program.”
Recipients of the fellowship not only must show promise as future teachers but also must exemplify the ideals that Dr. J promoted. According to Dr. J, teaching involves much more than imparting knowledge. He believed that teachers should see student self-actualization as their greatest goal. The five student teacher candidates receiving fellowships this year all represent Dr. J’s ideals and espoused them eloquently in their application letters. Recipient Nikki Campbell wrote, “My goal as an educator must be to make sure that each child’s needs are met academically, socially, psychologically with an overall goal of ensuring the entire well-being of
the child. If we put the child first, hopefully the success of society will follow.” Recipient Ivy Guasp offered similar sentiments, claiming, “My job as a teacher is to open my students’ minds and encourage them to think critically about the subject matter as well as the world around them.”
The other recipients were equally optimistic in their statements. Karen Luna asserted, “I want all students, regardless of their supposed shortcomings, to feel like they can do anything in this world because they have the potential. I want them to feel as full of potential as many of my great mentors have made me feel. I want to be someone who sparks a fire of interest in a children’s mind and aids in creating a strong positive self image. I want to be not only a teacher but also an advocate for education, empowerment, social justice and most important, children.” Erin Morales wrote, “It is the responsibility of educators to unravel the socialization ‘barriers’ that are keeping people from their true self, and paralyzing their instinctive interest to learn. Everyone is entitled to a solid educational foundation, and one that enhances the creativity of their own thoughts and ideas.”
As a group the five fellowship winners championed the power of good teaching, for as Bradi Powell declared, “When I move to Los Angeles next year, I will be teaching students who face barriers of race, class and language – all whom deserve an education that fosters their emotional growth and helps them set and achieve goals.”
The Dr. J Student Teacher Fellowships are offered by the Gevirtz School through the Teacher Education Program. TEP offers Multiple-Subject, Single-Subject and Level I Education Specialist Moderate/Severe Teaching Credentials with a Master’s Degree in Education. These programs provide future teachers with a solid theoretical foundation integrated with extensive fieldwork, leading to both a California State Teaching Credential and a Master’s Degree in Education.
Donations to the fellowship provide financial assistance to those who show promise of carrying on Dr. J’s dreams. For further information or to make a contribution to the Fund, you are encouraged to contact: Dr. Ann Lippincott at the Gevirtz Graduate School of Education at email@example.com or 805 893 3711.
Photo Caption: (from left to right) Ken Jamgochian, son of Dr. Richard Jamgochian, the namesake of the award, award recipient Ivy Guasp, Multiple Subject Teaching (MST), award recipient Nikki Campbell (MST), award recipient Bradi Powell, Single Subject Teaching (English), Jane Close Conoley, Dean of the Gevirtz School, award recipient Karen Luna (MST), award recipient Erin Morales (MST) and Gordon Morell, COO of Yardi Systems, a major donor to the Dr. J Student Teacher Fellowship Fund.