Armando Orduña is being honored as a Champion of Change for his service to education.
I come from a region of the country filled with great pride; pride in our industries, our food, our music, our innovations. It has been my career-long attempt to reflect that tradition of pride in my life through our children. I did not consciously choose to serve my community through public education but like so many others was called to it.
My father immigrated to Houston from his home country of Mexico in search of opportunity. He came to work. My mother came to Houston from her small, Texas coastal town for opportunity, as well. She came to work. When they found each other, they found their own piece of the American Dream. Together they founded a family. In that family, they found purpose. Through their work, their children found purpose.
Through my work with young people, I see my own purpose mirrored in their eyes. In my early efforts in community outreach, I delivered early childhood literacy and math programming to eager minds unable to cross city and social boundaries for themselves. In later years, I welcomed these same children as older students into my classroom to scaffold their learning as they proceeded toward their next level of knowledge and understanding. As I travel through the streets of my city, I view the opportunities that lay before them in the form of badly needed transformation and reform. This inspires me with much hope as I see my own purpose in equipping these young minds for the great challenges that lay ahead.
And through it all, I remind myself, these great accomplishments yet to come, were contributed to by the love of two hopeful individuals; two people in love with each other and purpose.
Armando Orduña trains high school students for careers in Education through the only teacher-preparation magnet program in Houston, Texas