San Francisco native Gabriela Hernandez was selected as one of 25 to receive a national teaching fellowship from the Woodrow Wilson-Rockefeller Brothers Fund for Aspiring Teachers of Color. A senior art history major at Williams College in Massachusetts, Hernandez will receive a $30,000 stipend from the fellowship to pursue a master’s degree.
When did you first want to become a teacher and what inspired you to pursue that goal? It’s hard to pinpoint a specific time. The two summers I spent working at Breakthrough Collaborative as a teacher were really fun for me. ... I found it fulfilling.
What does it mean for you to be one of only 25 fellows to receive this honor? I was surprised when I read the award letter. I was very proud. ... To come out above was really special.
In what area of graduate studies will you dedicate the $30,000 stipend? Secondary-education social studies. It’s to teach middle school students. I enjoyed working with that age group so much.
How did your parents react to the news? They were ecstatic. My dad is always the first person I call. He was very, very excited. My mom is also a teacher. I think she’s happy that I’m following in her footsteps.