This fall, departments in the University of Arizona's College of Science nominated an outstanding senior who went above and beyond during their time as a Wildcat. We are pleased to share their stories as they reflect on their time at UArizona. Next up in the senior spotlight series is Finlay Parsons.
College of Science: Why did you choose your area of study?
Parsons: After changing my major five times, I settled on math because I realized that my side hustle (being a math tutor) was what I really loved doing. Although I don't think math is necessarily as important to daily life as other forms of critical thinking, such as history and politics, it is the simplest form of critical thinking and builds skills that help you in virtually all kinds of study.
COS: Tell us about a class or research project you really enjoyed.
Parsons: I enjoyed all of my upper level math classes at the U of A, mainly because I enjoy doing math in general, but one class that had a particularly big effect on me was Math 196A: Tutoring in Schools, taught by Professor Melissa Hosten. The class mainly consisted of volunteering as a tutor-mentor in a Tucson public school for a year which played a huge role in my decision to graduate early and become a high school math teacher.
COS: What is one specific memory from your time at UA that you'll cherish forever?
Parsons: Chucking Halloween pumpkins off to the top of Cherry parking garage with my friends as a freshman!
COS: What is next for you after graduation?
Parsons: Since I graduated in August, I got my Arizona math teaching certification and have been working full time as a Geometry teacher at Tucson High! I see myself at Tucson High for the next few years, at least, and being a math teacher for the rest of my career. I am really loving the job, and, after observing my classroom, the principal and superintendent want me to lead professional development sessions with other teachers, so things are going pretty well! I'm very passionate about getting phones, tech, and the internet OUT of the classroom, and bringing back critical thinking instead.