13 Sep Alumni Board Scholar Profile: Q&A with 2003 scholar Jose Martinez III
Members of the Boettcher Scholar Alumni Board are interviewing their fellow Boettcher Scholars to help the community get to know one another better. The following Q&A was compiled by Boettcher Scholar Gergana Kostadinova.
University of Northern Colorado, B.A. Social Science Secondary Education and an endorsement in ESL, 2007
Grand Canyon University, M.A. Educational Administration, 2010
Tell us about your current work and how long you’ve been doing it. What is your favorite aspect of your current occupation?
I am currently getting into my 10th year of teaching high school social studies at Bear Creek High School in Jefferson County Public Schools. I teach economics, government, geography and broadcasting, and I think the most amazing part of my job is the fact that I get to help kids create pathways to their dreams. I feel like I have the ultimate privilege to have a direct hand in influencing the future. Every day I get to have fun at my job.
What role has being a Boettcher Scholar played into where you are and what you are doing now?
As a Boettcher Scholar I remember how amazing it felt to have the social and financial support of such an incredible organization as I began my own college career. Now that I teach in a Colorado high school, the topic of higher education is constantly addressed, and I feel like it is an honor and duty to help my students prepare for their future. I always feel an overwhelming sense of pride in being an alumni and talking about the foundation. I think this enthusiasm leaves a significant impact on my students and encourages them in their own journey.
Tell us about your involvement in activities, organizations or groups outside of work.
In terms of formal organizations, I’m a proud member of the Boettcher Scholar Alumni Board. Outside of that, my favorite activity involves spending time with my wife, Victoria, and my daughter, Penelope, but I also have a fairly wide range of hobbies. I began home-brewing a few years ago, and I love learning more each time a make a new batch. I DJ events from time to time and between gigs and my students, I am always getting a continual education in music. On top of that, I’m a huge tech nerd; I do graphic design and web design work on the side, and sometimes in the late evenings, I can get down on some Xbox with my buddies.
What’s the best advice you’ve received and what advice do you have for current graduates entering your career field?
I think the most amazing advice that I received at some point is best paraphrased by Conan O’Brien. He said, “If you work really hard and you’re kind, amazing things will happen.” I believe that success comes from doing more than the minimum even if no one ever recognizes it, and I always leave this sentiment with my students on the last day of class each semester.
If you could have dinner with one person or a few people from history, whom would you choose and why?
Easy. I’d choose Ron Swanson, Tim Cook and the Loch Ness Monster. I’d pick Ron Swanson because it guarantees that our meal would be meaty, manly and would come with a side of scotch. I’d pick Tim Cook because I’d love to know what it’s like to try and innovate in the tech sector in 2016; plus I’m a huge fan of Apple products and Tim seems like a relatable guy. Lastly, I’d pick the Loch Ness Monster because then I’d have proof to go along with what I’ve always known.