With a love of Mathematics since her childhood, Amy Vilcans now imparts that passion for the subject onto her pupils.
Since graduating from the University of Worcester two years ago Amy's career has flourished and she is now second in the Mathematics department and has been given responsibility for ensuring good numeracy across her school.
"With each working day I get to work with so many different young people and help them to achieve their potential in Mathematics," she said. "It is so rewarding to see a child go from being unsure to understanding key mathematical concepts."
Teaching was a career the 28-year-old, of Brierley Hill, in the West Midlands, had thought about since childhood.
"I love Mathematics as it is an important life skill and I had been very successful at it during my own education," said Amy. "I wanted to teach children to love Mathematics and see the creative side to it. Whilst working in a mental health hospital I was given the opportunity to assist patients in the on-site school. I loved this and it made me realise that that was where my passion was."
After work experience placements in a number of schools, Amy applied to the University of Worcester, as the facilities and academic staff had impressed her.
"I chose Worcester as I found the course leaders to be very knowledgable," said Amy. "When visiting I felt as though I would be supported throughout my course."
She took the Subject Knowledge Enhancement course then the PGCE Secondary Mathematics, completing her course with Qualified Teacher Status in June 2015. Amy said the experience had lived up to her expectations.
"The course was amazing," she added. "Our course leader was supportive, knowledgeable and was always available to help no matter what you needed. I found the subject sessions to be my favourite part of the course. I loved thinking about Mathematics in different ways and exploring different teaching styles that we would possibly use in future. The course was also enhanced by my peers. I made a whole new group of friends who I am still in touch with now. We really supported each other through the course and even enjoyed some social outings!"
Amy now works as the Second in Mathematics at Pedmore Technology College, in Stourbridge, a position she was given upon completing her NQT year in 2016. In this role, she helps oversee the quality of the teaching and learning, has introduced new schemes of work to the department and organises student enrichment activities. A year later, Amy also was made Numeracy Coordinator, making her responsible for promoting and enhancing numeracy across the whole school. This involves creating projects, competitions and writing policies. She hopes in the future to achieve a head of department role and be a part of the leadership team.
"I think the teaching profession is fantastic," she said. "It is true that each day is different and I don't think it will ever get boring! I think the teaching profession is something that is constantly evolving so you as a teacher are constantly developing and enhancing yourself to ensure you are giving the children the best education possible."