Scholarship Support Will Help Alliyah Rich ’22 Make a Difference in Lives of Elementary, Special Education Students
Ever since Alliyah Rich ’22 could remember, she wanted to be a teacher. After attending an open house at the NC State College of Education, she knew the close knit community was the environment she had been looking for to prepare for her career as an educator.
She was also appreciative of the additional support she received through the College of Education’s Council on Multicultural Initiatives & Diversity (COMID) Scholarship, which provides need-based support to undergraduate students in the College of Education, particularly those from underrepresented groups and those who demonstrate a commitment to work with the African American community.
“It meant a lot to me to see NC State working hard to create a diverse group of students among the college,” Rich said. “Receiving this scholarship confirms NC State’s commitment to making an inclusive environment, and it makes me feel that I am truly cared for in the community.”
Support Our Students
Now, as she approaches graduation, Rich is looking forward to being a first-year teacher for elementary school and special education students, with the goal of one day stepping into a leadership role and earning her Master of School Administration.
Learn more about Alliyah Rich
Hometown: Midland, North Carolina
Why did you choose the NC State College of Education?
I chose the NC State College of Education because I loved how the program was so small, and I knew that it would be a really personal experience, which it has been. I also loved speaking to the college faculty at the open house, and it just felt it was the perfect fit for me.
Why did you choose your area of study?
Ever since I can remember I wanted to be a teacher. I used to force my little brother to play “school” with me and set up stuffed animals who were in my class. All through middle and high school it was something I stayed interested in. I wanted to do something that I would enjoy, but also would help others in some way, so I decided to pursue education.
What’s your next step? What do you have planned after graduation?
After graduation, I plan to teach elementary school in grades K-2 and then eventually switch to working in special education. After a few years of teaching, I plan to go to graduate school to receive my Master of School Administration.
How has the College of Education prepared you for that next step?
The courses, professional development opportunities, and field experiences that the College of Education provides all help us to become the best first-year teachers possible. We are given so many opportunities to learn new things and observe classrooms and other teachers, so we can be exposed to as many things as possible. All of these things have increased my confidence in my abilities and skills as I prepare to go into the classroom.
Do you have a favorite memory from your time in the College of Education?
The best memories I have from the College of Education were from my time in SAY Village. It was one of the best programs to be a part of, and I gained so many friends who I remain friends with years later. I also built relationships with various faculty in the College of Education. Working with the at-risk youth in SAY Village helped me realize the lives students have outside of school and how having an adult they can trust is super important.
Tell us about an experience you had with the College of Education that had the biggest impact on you or your career.
The thing that had the biggest impact on my career was probably the time I spent in my student teaching. I got to work with two different mentor teachers — one elementary and one special education — and they both taught me so many things about both fields and how knowing things about both topics can help when working in the other field. This experience helped me find my own teaching style, as well as things I want to do in my classes and things I may not want to do.
Why did you choose education?
I wanted to go into the field of education because I wanted to find a job I know I would enjoy going to, as well as a job that would make a difference in another person’s life.