Committed to Teach
Ashley Mae Bernardo ’18 was among 40 teachers named 2021 WW Pennsylvania Teaching Fellows by the Institute for Citizens & Scholars.
Bernardo, a Fulbright grant recipient during her time at UC Davis, will obtain her master’s degree from University of Pennsylvania, and then teach for three years in a high-need Pennsylvania school. The fellowship is part of Pennsylvania’s effort to invest in high-quality teachers.
A biological sciences major at UC Davis, Bernardo teaches science to middle school and high school students.
“My favorite thing about teaching is getting to know my students — it’s truly an honor to be a part of their lives!” she said. “I decided to be a teacher when I was in high school because I was impacted by a few teachers who made me feel seen and supported. During my time at UC Davis, I met instructors who also made me feel seen and supported, and, in addition, challenged me to realize my own capabilities as a learner and teacher.”
She said she’s interested in expanding her credentials to teach art and environmental science and working with English language learners.
An avid artist, she works with different media, including paint, pen and ink, and digital art.
“I actually had a painting hanging in the Biology Academic Success Center [at UC Davis] for the past four years, even after I graduated,” she said.
As a Fulbright U.S. Student Program grant recipient at UC Davis, Bernardo was an English teaching assistant in Malaysia and then a program coordinator.
“My time in Malaysia grew my passion for education and motivated me to go to graduate school to get my M.S. Ed.,” she said.