New School Year Brings New Teachers


Kayli Sandoval

C High welcomes New Teachers Justin Nguyen, Brandon Tarrac, and Sabina Adjibolosoo.

Pavle Ristic, Staff Writer

   This school year, UC High is happy to welcome quite a few new and interesting teachers to our team, all of whom are excited to be here.

   The first teacher we’d like to welcome is Special Education Teacher Kostadina Welker, who is of Greek descent and grew up working at her family’s restaurant in Anaheim. She recently took five years of absence and had two children in that time. This is Welker’s first year back to teaching since then and she is having a great time. “I believe that everyone at this school is very kind and people work together. Everyone is always scared to teach high school because of the students, but I absolutely love the kids here,” she explained with a smile.

   Ms. Sabina Adjibolosoo is the new French teacher from Ghana and has taught at Point Loma High and a private school in Chula Vista. She enjoys travel and has gone to both France and Quebec with her French students, and has even shown some students around her home country. “Mr. Olivero is on top of everything and very up to date. Also, everyone is doing their duty and is very supportive here,” she explained.

   New Science Teacher Jennifer Leclair was overjoyed when she was offered the opportunity to teach Marine Science and Physics here at UC High. She was excited to leave middle school teaching and make the switch to high school. She added, “It’s amazing–everything is very professional, the students are just amazing, and I’m really happy.” If you ever have the time, you should ask about her previous career training dolphins and sea lions.

   Integrated Math Teacher Evgenia Harel is another new teacher. She came from a prestigious math and science school in Ukraine and is now trying her best to instill a learning mentality and a love for math in the students she has here at UC High. “I have this mission, to convert students from not being so thrilled about math to being puzzled by it,” she stated. Harel has a genuine drive to motivate her students and to really teach them this new outlook, and if you stay open minded, she will find a way to make you believe so.

   Next on the list is Biology Teacher Justin Nguyen, who recently finished his student teaching at Mira Mesa High. This is his first year teaching. Nguyen brings a real youthful energy to the staff, and you can see that right away from his Razer computer as well as his overall demeanor. He said, “It’s great to be here. Everyone I’ve met here is great so far, teachers and students. This school really works on trying to make itself a second home for the students and they really should not take that for granted.” Mr. Nguyen is definitely adding to that sense of hominess and will make a great addition to our already diverse teaching staff.

    Like Adjibolosoo, new Spanish Teacher Iris Espinosa comes from a country that speaks the language she teaches. Born in Los Angeles, she moved to Mexico at age 10, where she remained to study and become a teacher. This is also where she gained her first bit of teaching experience at the high school level. Once she moved back to America, to San Diego, she taught at a Spanish immersion school and Grant Elementary before she made the move to UC High.

   Espinosa expressed, “This is my first time at a large school. I used to teach at small community schools and it is very different.” She added, “I am really happy that students here are learning Spanish, not just as a subject but as an asset. It opens students’ minds and perceptions of the world when they are able to speak multiple languages.”

    Rounding up the bunch is Engineering Teacher Brandon Tarrac. Taking charge of the pathway after UC High went through a bit of a rocky year in the engineering department last year, Tarrac has already made some drastic improvements and there has been a lot of great feedback from students taking his course.

   Tarrac has been putting a lot of effort into his work, and he is trying his hardest to create fun and enjoyable projects that also teach the principles of engineering. He stated, “It is my pleasure to have the opportunity to work alongside the incredible teachers, administration, parents, and all other staff here at UC High. But most of all, the hard work and dedication of the students at UC High is truly a remarkable thing to be a part of.” Tarrac’s advice for students: “You are the future. Go forth and make the world a better place.” Tarrac is putting his all into providing a great experience for his students.

   With this bolstering of the UC High staff this year, both students and staff are are excited to see what the new school year has to bring, and we hope for a successful year for all.