“And that’s why now, I can say to my kids, ‘Look, I know those situations where you’re the only one who looks like you and how intimidating that can be until you outlearn that system or learn to fit in, but I lived in those apartments, too, and I went to college!’ They have to see it. They have to see someone who looks like them do it, and that’s why I don’t leave where I am. I want my kids to see I was right where they are, and I am thriving.”
Today, Nyree helps to integrate tech for elementary educators and is also the co-founder of Equity in Action, a group of teachers who strives to build inclusive teaching communities in California. In all endeavors, one passion rings throughout: empower one another, just like her teachers did for her.
“When I was in school, I felt completely safe,” Nyree says. “I could let myself down and learn because I was safe, and I think that is the most important thing today. When your students know you care for them, and their parents know you care for them, that’s going to be all they need. Those relationships need to be strong.”
Nyree is beautifully emphatic, tenacious and brave, but most of all she believes in everyone else to be courageous, too. She is not only proud of and grateful for the helpful educators who came before her, she is extremely confident in all the great students to come.
“We have brilliant kids all over the place, and I want my students to know that it can start with them,” Nyree says. “It was so impactful to me that I had teachers who cared enough to push me. Now, I want my own students to know that they don’t need to have a million dollars to be a good community member or a good role model – you can come from anywhere and still be kind and be decent and grow where you are. No excuses! We are here to guide you always.”