Coppell High School senior Jasmine Smith is combining the passion for education she has had since elementary school and through the education endorsement with her love for history. Currently National Art Honor Society (NAHS) president, Smith plans to double major in history and education at the University of North Texas and hopes to share her passions with future students.
Why did you choose to major in education?
With teaching, you’re able to make an impact on people and help them find something they’re passionate about through your passion. I really love history; I really love showing people about it, telling people about it. Being able to give people the same kind of passion I’ve been given just seems exciting. As I’ve gone through school, I’ve met so many teachers and they’ve made such a profound impact on me. They’ve helped me through a lot, and I want to be that person for other kids.
What was your college application process like?
I always knew I wanted to go to a school that was close, and a school that had a good education program and a good reputation for education, and that was relatively inexpensive. I’m a first-generation college student, so I had to think about the financial aspects more. I just chose UNT because it gave me a full ride, and I have the Dean’s scholarship, so it’s helping out a lot with the finance.
What interests you the most about your career path?
That’s always changing. With history, it’s written from the victor’s perspective, and that’s what any history teacher will tell you from now until the day you die. Because it’s written from the victor’s perspective, we’re always finding new research, new information from records that shows us that maybe history isn’t what we think it was. And as time progresses, yesterday is history. We can learn the events of yesterday have the power to influence things 20 years from now, we won’t know it until then.
What are your plans after college or other higher education?
I’ll definitely get my bachelor’s [degree]. In order to teach, you have to pay for the certification exam, so I would take the certification for social studies and history. I’m probably going to start teaching right away, save some money and then maybe go back to school for a master’s.
What do you think will be a challenge with your major?
A challenge that comes with teaching, in general, is the self-doubt you have. Being able to get over the doubts of “am I a good teacher? Am I doing enough for these kids? Am I helping everyone in the best way?” I just have to be confident in myself and remember that whatever school I’ll end up teaching at, my coworkers will be there for me.