The OLP Teaching Fellows have been on campus for a few months now and are excited to dive into next semester and to get to know the community even more. In an effort for you to know our TFs better, check out our “Get to Know the OLP Teaching Fellows” post! Meet Krista Valdez ‘09, Manuel Carranza, Shannon Alatorre, Elsi Hildebrand ‘15, and Scott Higby!
Krista Valdez '09
Krista Valdez has been tasked with overseeing the SAT on campus and helping in Ms. Susan Antolin’s classes. Ms. Valdez grew up in Palo Alto and moved to Encinitas when she was 12. When it came time for her to go to high school, she chose OLP because of the cheer program (and loved that Bring it On was filmed at OLP!). After graduating from OLP, Ms. Valdez started out her college journey at Mount St. Mary’s and finished at the University of San Diego. An interesting fact about Ms. Valdez is that she has traveled to Thailand with her yoga mentor to learn holistic healing and thai massage. She loves being back at her alma mater because she believes that the people at OLP have helped her become who she is today, and she wants to be a part of empowering the future OLP pilots.
Elsi Hildebrand ’15
Elsi Hildebrand is thrilled to be back on the OLP campus! After graduating from OLP, she traveled up to Spokane, Washington to attend Gonzaga University. While at Gonzaga, she received her bachelor’s degree in Biology with a research concentration. Ms. Hildebrand studied the Acorn Woodpeckers in Hastings Reservation in Northern California and performed extractions to then use them for polymerase chain reactions. She looks forward to getting her master’s degree in school counseling from the University of Southern California! Ms. Hildebrand is currently taking classes and the more she learns the more excited she feels about getting to work in a school setting, to build relationships, and to work toward promoting the well-being of students within a K-12 grade setting. When she isn’t at OLP or studying, she loves going to symphonies with family and doing flower arrangements with her mom!
Mr. Scott Higby can be found in the classroom at OLP with all his fancy tech! He is familiar with cool tech because he owns a local media production company and produces and hosts a podcast. An interesting fact about Mr. Hiby is that he moved around a lot when he was younger because of his father’s job. He even studied abroad in Brussels during high school. Not to mention he was in a punk rock band! When asked about what he likes about being at OLP, Mr. Higby mentioned that he has always been an advocate for women and seeing them empowered at OLP to conquer anything they put their minds to is inspirational. He highlighted that high school years are an important age because this is the moment that young minds start to create a strong foundation for their mark on changing the world.
Mr. Manuel Carranza can be found supervising breaks on Upper Plaza and in the classroom. He enjoys being on the OLP campus when he’s not teaching his virtual math classes in the afternoon. He grew up in Tijuana, México and received his degree in computer science from the Instituto Technológico de Tijuana. When he’s not at OLP or teaching math online, he has a seasonal magic store and halloween business. If you need help in math or interested in magic tricks ask Mr. Carranza when you see him during breaks! He enjoys being a teaching fellow at OLP because he enjoys being in an educational environment and is interested in teaching in the US in the future after acquiring his teaching credential.
Mrs. Alatorre has been a teaching fellow from the beginning! You can find her at the frosh or junior gate during the morning and supervising during breaks. She enjoys traveling the world (when we’re not in a global pandemic). Her favorite destination is Portugal because of the amazing food, history, and pottery. Mrs. Alatorre is originally from the Midwest; she has a big heart, kind demeanor, and is easy to talk to. When you see her around campus, feel free to say hello!