BSc Mathematics, 2008
Maths Teacher, Southam College
I teach Maths in a secondary school, ranging from year 7 up to year 13. This involves planning and delivering lessons that support students to progress at their pace and level, marking work and providing valuable feedback.
This also includes communicating effectively with colleagues, students and parents, being involved in the pastoral teams by being a form tutor, and working as part of a team to carry out any extra duties required of me.
What is the best thing about what you are doing now?
I am genuinely never bored! No two days are the same when you work in a school. I also get great satisfaction and pride from working in a job that can have such a positive impact on other people's lives and society as a whole.
What made you interested in your current role?
I have always loved learning myself, and explaining things to others. I knew growing up that I wanted to teach.
How has your career developed since graduating from the University of Birmingham?
After working in a building society for a year after graduating, in order to gain some real-world experiences outside of education, I was accepted onto the Graduate Teacher Program at Warwick University. This meant I worked in and was paid by a school for my training year whilst being trained formally by the University, much like an apprenticeship.
After qualifying, I became second in department part way through my NQT year. After four years I left to have my first child and stepped down from my role as second in department in order to go part time. I then had my second child, and worked in another school for a couple of years before moving to the school I am now at.
I also now run two small companies: a tutoring company, Lightbulb Learners, with an ex colleague of mine, offering small group Maths tuition at the weekends, and my own art company selling my artwork and items featuring my artwork, Bethany Martin Art.
What motivates you?
Success! Which for me is seeing students thrive because I have helped them to understand, or seeing a customer's eyes light up when they spot a piece of my artwork that they have fallen in love with.
Why did you originally apply to Birmingham?
It was close to my home and had an excellent reputation.
What are your fondest memories of the University?
Living with my housemates and making lifelong friends.
How did your time at the University help start your career?
It helped me to have a lot more confidence in both my own abilities as a mathematician, and in being able to speak with people I didn't know.
“Enjoy it! Ask questions: make the most of this opportunity to learn and to grow.”