I want to be a STEM professor that is not only well versed in in my knowledge, but also able to impart those ideas onto my students. I want to be a good teacher.
The reason Ian Kollipara came to Concordia was not an uncommon one: He wanted to be a Lutheran School teacher. “I’ve been working with kids for ten years, and I’ve always loved it.” Ian felt that Concordia was an excellent place to get an education degree. “There is not a better place in the United States to become a Lutheran teacher than Concordia. We read a book about Lutheran Education in one of my classes and almost every article in there was written by someone with a connection to Concordia”.
But Ian’s enthusiasm did not stop at education. “I started programming my junior year of high school and I planned to get a minor in computer science when I came here. My freshman year, I was in the intro class, doing fine, when Professor Gubyani pulled me out of class and suggested doing a computer science major.”
Halfway through his freshman year, Ian decided to double major in computer science and elementary education. Even though it was not a conventional path; Ian believes it is one worth pursuing. “Computer science challenged me in a new way I felt I really needed.”
Despite being a good addition to his academic life, Ian believes that a base level understanding of computer science is helpful for educators. “Everything we do these days involves some level of computer science, and as time goes on, we become more dependent on it. In the education field, people have the potential to use computer science to interpret data regarding achievement gaps and find ways to help kids who are falling behind or have a more technologically advanced classroom. It’s interesting stuff.”
Since going through his degree, Ian changed his trajectory slightly. After graduation, Ian plans to pursue his master's and doctorate in computer science, and eventually teach computer science at a university. Despite his path change, Ian is still thankful for his elementary education degree. “I want to be a STEM professor that is not only well versed in my knowledge, but also able to impart that knowledge onto my students. I want to be a good teacher.”