A Cup of Teach: Ms. Mullin

A Cup of Teach: Ms. Mullin

New DP chemistry teacher, Alissa Mullin has always had a love for science. However, teaching the subject was not their first career choice. Growing up as a biology enthusiast, Mullin gained great appreciation for animals and the world around them.

It wasn’t until Mullin’s sophomore year of high school where she found her passion for chemistry amidst taking a difficult AP Chemistry class.

Alissa Mullin holding one of their favorite fantasy books, “Priory of the Orange Tree”, to read in their free time. (Araceli Rodriguez)

“It kicked my butt, [it] did not go well,” Mullin said. “But, once it started clicking – the lens that chemistry can give you to understand what’s going on … kind of rocks.”

After graduating from high school, Mullin attended Cal Poly SLO, where he worked in a lab with hopes of becoming a researcher. In their senior year, he became a mentor to new lab members, marking the start of their journey as a teacher.

“I would go into my meetings with my [head professor] … who wanted updates on the science, and I would give it to him, but I was more excited to [say] ‘I got Luke to understand this today,’” Mullin said.

Later, Mullin dedicated themself to teaching, subsequently relocating from San Luis Obispo to the Goleta area for their position at DP. According to Mullin, their first year teaching at DP has been very fulfilling.

“I had one student in particular last year who told my co-teacher and I that he had never enjoyed any class or going to school before, but liked chemistry,” Mullin said. “I had heard from the principal and other teachers that he typically had behavior issues and ‘ran with a rough crowd,’ as they say, but he was really bright and never acted out with us.”

Today, Mullin continues striving to create an enjoyable atmosphere for her students, aiming to leave a positive impression on them in the long run.

“I know most students won’t remember the chemistry they learn,” Mullin said, “but I hope that having a safe environment with an adult who cares will have a lasting impact and give students the confidence to know they are capable of being successful in science.”

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