From the Field: Adam Barajas
The powerful witness of ACE is not lost on Adam Barajas. As a high school student, he studied science under an ACE teacher. That experience not only set his course towards the ACE Service through Teaching program but, he says, "it made me a better person."
Adam Barajas lives in Brownsville, Texas in an ACE community that refers to itself—true to Texas form—as "the biggest and best in ACE." The middle school math and science teacher describes why he joined ACE Service through Teaching: "I was taught Chemistry and Physics by an ACE teacher in high school. His influence in my life reached far beyond the classroom and past my time in high school...When I was discerning God's plan for me after college, it seemed as though I was called to give back to the program that had done so much for me."
Indeed, Mr. Barajas is giving back. While he speaks of areas where he needs "a lot of improvement," he attests to how he is making a difference. "There is a poverty of depth, experience, and intellectual challenge at the school in which I teach. In seeing and addressing this issue, I feel I am making a difference. My students leave my class with more questions than they came in with. The ability to question and seek answers in a coherent manner is the best gift I can offer my students."
At the same time, Mr. Barajas attests to the gift ACE teaching has been to him. His spiritual and professional growth have made him a different person from when he started the program, such that he can say: "This past weekend I saw the sunset on the bay of South Padre Island [and] the reality that I am doing more than just service and that these kids are more than just my students finally sunk in. God is with the people of this foreign place and he is with me in my time here as well, sanctifying my service and making my broken talents whole."
Click here to learn more about the ACE Service through Teaching program.