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PrepNow Tutor - Donna M.

Photo of Donna M.
Donna's Bio

Donna M. graduated from the University of California San Diego with a BS in electrical engineering and minors in music and math. She has also taken graduate-level courses in secondary math education at the University of Florida. A former high school math teacher with eighteen years of teaching experience, Donna was named teacher of the month at Bryan High School in April 2017, is listed in the student-nominated Who's Who Among America's Teachers (1999 and 2000), and holds the honor of fall 2017 derivative bee winner in the graduate and adult category at Texas A&M.

After graduating from UCSD, Donna started out working for SAIC designing automatic toll booth collection systems. She went on to teach an engineering class for non-majors at the University of Florida while studying secondary math at the graduate level. She left her graduate program to have children, and when her youngest was two, she decided to leave engineering and channel her love of math into teaching. She returned to work, teaching math part time at her children's private school. After receiving her secondary mathematics certification in Texas, Donna went on to teach in several area schools and now has almost two decades of experience as a math teacher. She has taught everything from algebra I through calculus BC and has done SAT/ACT prep work with all of her algebra II and pre-calculus students over the years. Most recently, Donna taught pre-calculus, calculus AB, and calculus BC in a Title I high school. She has completed several AP calculus workshops and has attended statewide math conferences.

Donna has tutored over one hundred high school and college students over the years. This past year, she changed direction in her teaching focus and left full-time high school teaching to tutor online as well as teach part time at a Texas junior college and at the Johns Hopkins Center for Talented Youth. Donna has tutored students from Blinn College, Texas A&M, and local high schools in subjects ranging from algebra I up through calculus III and for state assessments. She has also taught classes and tutored college students for Tutor John in College Station and has developed ACT math prep curriculum for Texas A&M.

Of her love of math education, Donna says, "I like to meet all kinds of people and help them feel less stressed out about math. I want to help them and make math enjoyable and show them why math is so useful in real life. As a former engineer, I understand the importance of math in the technical society in which we live. I especially love calculus because that's when math really becomes applied."

Donna believes in keeping her explanations clear and simple. "If students can understand how math fits together, there is much less to memorize. I love applying math whenever possible. I am very interactive; I ask a lot of questions and would never put someone down. I ask questions because it helps me analyze whether the student is understanding what I am teaching, and it helps me modify what I am teaching, and how, as I go."

In high school, Donna worked in a taco shop, played tennis, and won her school's physical education award. In college, she was active in Campus Crusade.

Now, in her down time, you can find Donna singing in a choir and playing piano. She sews, still plays a lot of tennis, and is currently learning to use a telescope. When she's not reading math literature for fun, you might find Donna watching Star Wars, Star Trek, and other sci-fi cinema. Fun fact: Donna and her twin brother were raised by a live-in Irish housekeeper who gave them tea and cookies for afternoon snacks!


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