Introducing new THHS faculty and staff: A Q/A with the newest school aides

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As the school year begins once again in an unconventional manner, it marks new realities, but also familiar sights. New teachers are by no means unfamiliar at Townsend Harris, but this year, the school has welcomed close to 20 new staff members. As part of The Classic’s introducing THHS teachers series, we gathered responses regarding the motivations, goals and aspirations from THHS’ new staff members.  Among those we spoke to are the two new school aides joining the THHS community: Bianca Bonilla and Esther Yee. 

New School Aide, Bianca Bonilla

     1. Tell us about yourself and your background. What department do you teach/work with and how long have you been in education? What do you like to do in your free time? What are your hobbies, your interests, etc?

Hello, my name is Bianca Bonilla and I’m a new school aide here at Townsend Harris. I’ll be helping out in the Humanities office and the school store for the most part, so you can catch me there. I just graduated with a BA from Queens College with a degree in Anthropology, which is the study of human beings and their culture. I also enjoy art, reading, making pottery, and playing video games. 

     2. What motivated you to want to choose this career path? 

While I’m not a teacher, I’ve always been drawn to education. It’s such a valuable resource and I’m thrilled to be able to help students and teachers in whatever ways I can. I’d like to continue my own education as well, and hopefully do some teaching in the future.

     3. What are your goals for this school year?

This year I want to get to know everyone better. This is my first year at this school, and I am a little bit nervous, as I’m sure many of the students are as well. But I’m very excited to learn more about the wonderful students and faculty here! 

     4. What do you look forward to the most this year? Is there anything you are excited about in becoming a new member of the THHS community?

I’m really looking forward to seeing the projects the students put together, like the plays, S!NG, The Phoenix, and of course, The Classic. Everyone here is so full of passion and potential and I have a feeling I’ll love the end results. 

New School Aide, Esther Yee

     1. Tell us about yourself and your background. What department do you teach/work with and how long have you been in education? What do you like to do in your free time? What are your hobbies, your interests, etc?

I’m Ms. Yee, one of the new school aides at Townsend Harris.  I work alongside Ms. Fee and Ms. Brandeis, [who are] very cool people.  This is my first year working at a school.  I use my free time differently day by day. Indoor hobbies include making art and music, in addition to reading and buying random domain names.  Outdoors hobbies include biking, kayaking, hiking, and camping.  

     2. What motivated you to want to choose this career path? 

I wanted to have a more present role in supporting young individuals and THHS seemed like a great place to start. Go Hawks! 

     3. What are your goals for this school year?

My main goal is to have a fun school year with everyone.

     4. What do you look forward to the most this year? Is there anything you are excited about in becoming a new member of the THHS community?

I’m not sure what to expect!  So far, I’ve enjoyed watching the Election Simulation Kick-Off rally and am eager to experience more activities as the year goes on.  I heard THHS staff members get access to the QC’s library, that’s pretty cool too.

Photo by Kate Romero and Audrey Chou, photography editors

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