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Alumna Vanessa D’Souza featured as AAPS Exceptional Teacher

May 21, 2019

Ann Arbor Public Schools’ District News honored SOE alumna Vanessa D’Souza as an Exceptional Teacher. Featured in an article by Jo Mathis, D’Souza was selected for her professionalism and focus on the Burns Park Elementary community, where she teaches second grade.


“She does an excellent job of applying the practice taught at the University of Michigan while also learning the needs of the community and attending to all the things a new teacher must,” said Burns Park Assistant Principal Laura Wolf, when nominating D’Souza as an Exceptional Teacher. “She’s phenomenal.”

After graduating from Huron High School, D’Souza attended Washtenaw Community College for two years before transferring to the University of Michigan to become the first in her family to earn a college degree. At U-M, D’Souza graduated with honors and was one of the top ten students selected for the Dean’s Award for Academic Excellence.

“My mom inspired me to become a teacher,” explained D’Souza. “Through her personal experiences, she has taught me the importance of being educated. My family’s lack of education helped me realize how important it is to be knowledgeable and for children to learn skills to help them be successful in today’s society.”

For this alumna, the most rewarding part of teaching is watching the development that takes place in her students over the course of a school year. “It’s amazing to see that I had a part in helping a child grow,” she said.

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