On 9 November Sul Ross State University’s local chapter of TSTA-AE hosted a district conference, with future educators attended from El Paso Community College, UTEP, and our Sul Ross State University TSTA-AE students. The conference was a success as it was “a really big turnout for Sul Ross, many students attended [from Sul Ross] and outside of Sul Ross.” Conference keynote speaker, Pat Dasch, was one of the Apollo mission astronauts, working side by side taking pictures of the Apollo missions work . Dash, who has a degree in American Studies from the University of East Anglia, U.K., later worked in the space program at the Johnson Space Center in Houston, Texas and NASA Headquarters in Washington, DC., while also championing public advocacy of space exploration as editor-in-chief of Ad Astra magazine. Since retiring to Alpine Dash has served as the founding administrator for the Rio Grande Research Center at SRSU, and more recently has enjoyed providing editorial assistance to CBBS.
After talking to Dash, students split up into two groups to attend break-out session focusing on: time management, classroom management, family involvement and team building. The time management seminar was presented by Alpine High School Principal Justin Gonzales and Alpine Middle School Teacher Macy Downey. Meanwhile, Classroom Management presented by representatives of the Region 18 Service Centre. After a lunch break, the next two break-out sessions were held. Family involvement was presented by Selena Garcia (Sul Ross Teacher Education alumnus), a second-grade teacher in Andrews ISD. The other seminar was Team Building, presented by Megan Miller who was previously district president for TSTA-AE. A student there described it as a “very informative event for teachers now and aspiring students. Also, the conference was very informative for future teachers giving them approaches on how to teach and what they will be doing. It even gave students a bigger idea of what it’s like to be a teacher.”