Kenya Bustos-Diaz
Secondary English Education (with ELL Licensure)
Veracruz, Mexico. Indiana has been home since the age of 5.  

What were some of your favorite memories as a Butler student?  
Some of my favorite memories as a Butler student came from my College of Education (COE) classes and the conversations our professors encouraged us to have. Specifically, I recall how important Dr. Madrazo’s first semester class was to deepen my interest and quest to understand our students’ brains. The class consisted of both Elementary Education and Secondary Education majors, and although we work with different age groups, the course helped us all understand how important student development is and why it matters that we have an understanding of it. 

What were the best parts about your major and/or your college?  
The best part of the COE is the faculty. Dean Kandel to professors like Dr. Adams, Adamson, Furuness, Brooks, are the reasons I think a lot of us Education majors kept our passion for this career path. The faculty really shows that they care about us as their pupils and future colleagues. They are all so unique in their own way and this brought so much variety in how they taught us and how they interacted with us, especially in how they impacted and influenced us.  

What professor and/or staff member played an important role during your time at Butler?  
Dean Kandel, Dr. Adams, Dr. Adamson, Dr. Furuness, and Dr. Brooks have had the greatest impact on me. These women all contributed into shaping me and encouraging me to be the educator I want to be. They are all so different and I learned at least one thing from all of them. I knew that I could always count on them. When they didn’t have the answers, they would work to try and help me find them. Above all, it was their kindness and dedication to me and my success that I will forever cherish. 

What are your plans after graduation?  
My plans are to teach in Wayne Township as their freshman ENL teacher. I am back at my former high school, now part of a community of colleagues I once had an opportunity to call my teachers. I also plan to stay connected with the COE to help them bring more Latinx teachers into the College. I want to play a role in mentoring future teachers of color.

How did Butler prepare you for this next step?  
Butler gave me the tools to be a confident teacher. The amount of involvement we had in classrooms before student teaching helped shape who I am, and can be, as an educator. Butler gave me the opportunity to open up to others when I thought I didn’t fit in and to be certain that I did belong.

What are your long-term career goals?  
My long-term career goals are to continue involvement with my community and with Butler to open up more conversations about the importance of representation. I plan to remain a public-school educator and work with the immigrant and English learning community. I want to use my voice to show others that they can use theirs too. 

What are you going to miss most about your time at Butler?  
I am going to miss the collaboration with my peers. I am going to miss hanging my hammock out in the mall and taking a nap between classes, and the coffee Jordan College of Arts and the English Department had that saved my life on many late nights! 

What advice would you give a first-year student?  
Get to know your professors; they are great people. Communicate openly with your advisor about what you want to accomplish. Soak it all up and be proud that you made it there.