India White - DELEGATE, MEd
I am a first-generation college graduate and doctoral student from Sarasota, Florida.I obtained a B.S. in mathematics and an M.Ed in Ed Leadership from the University of Florida while participating in the Gator Band. I am passionate about education and thus I love to speak to different bodies of students along with various non-profit organizations about needs in education today. As an Assistant Principal, I continue to gather knowledge while working with other leaders to best serve our learners. As I studied, I learned that not only is there a need for education, there is a need for safety and management within the schools. As a transformational leader and consultant, I continue to lead with an administrative team on my side. I desire to develop into an effective administrator, impacting thousands with moral and practical decisions for all learners.
About my company
I am an advocate for many organizations including YMCA, NAPW, HABSE, NABSE, and Take Stock In Children, which are non-profit organizations that provide scholarships to middle schoolers who are underserved. I have been blessed to be a catalyst to help raise millions of dollars through motivational speaking, workshops and consulting. As a Gates Millennium Scholar and a Take Stock in Children Scholar, I know the power of believing and investing in someone. Thus, I desire to raise academic awareness and financial needs for learners who are trying to break out of the cycle of poverty. As a UF, Gates, and Take Stock Alumna who is actively involved in it's Alumni Alliance, it is my mission to help future generations break the cycle and help others give back via mentoring or by sowing a worthwhile seed into the lives of learners who would in no other wise would have any hope. Together, we all can break the cycle and pay it forward! Therefore, I will continue to pay it forward through my tutoring program in the summers and via the Rising Glory Productions company in which I operate.
I chose this career path because
Growing up, I had a humble start. I was the ninth out 10 children, bound to be a stereotype. My mother was bound by a sickness of alcoholism, and did her best but could not meet our needs.
I remained on the honor roll and stayed focus in rigorous classes all the way through high school, in spite of abuse in the home and the voice of poverty around me. On Christmas Eve, I was kicked out of the house by my mom, and knew the YMCA Homeless shelter to be my home for the last two years. If this wasn't enough, I lost four immediate family members in the span of a month, including my grandmother and my brother.
Instead of allowing life to shut me down, I poured myself into AP Government and AP Calculus, 13 extracurricular activities, and a part-time job at Publix. With only two hours of sleep per night due to scholarship applications and etc., I was grateful for a community who invested in me to provide a full-ride scholarship via 18 scholarships. One scholarship was from Bill Gates.
I went from a homeless shelter into a college dorm as a mathematics major at the University of Florida, and graduated with a degree in mathematics four years later.
Because I understood the power of education and how it helped break off my shackles of poverty, I decided to invest into the lives of future generations by becoming an educator. Before my brother passed, I made a promise to him to get straight A's and to do my best. Now, I am doing that as a math teacher and motivational speaker to teach and inspire others.
Now, I continue 10 years later to speak for education foundations, nonprofit organizations, legislation, educational leaders and students to spread an inspirational message.
I continue to break the cycle of poverty in my own life by obtaining my master's degree in educational leadership and by promoting hope in the lives of all I meet.
I desire to help everyone in the future avoid the chances of becoming a statistic by demonstrating knowledge and by working hard. I believe that the cycle of poverty can be broken one child at a time.
I prepared for this career by
After I graduated from college, I obtained my professional teacher certification in 2010. I've been a math teacher for about 10 years with over 200 professional development hours. I am now an administrator and doctorate student, preparing myself for principalship. I am a member of Phi Delta Kappa and am 1st V.P. of H.A.B.S.E., administrative organization that promote growth of schools and administrators. I'm grateful that Arne Duncan and Senator Marco Rubio mentioned me in their work as an example of breaking the cycle!
The biggest challenge I've overcome
The biggest challenge was to show other women that I am capable of doing the impossible. I have a voice and my voice can change lives for the better. I look behind the external and see that I am confident and a leader.
My greatest strength(s)
My greatest strength is my attitude of faith and ambition. Without faith and ambition, I would settle for average. But with ambition and faith, I have hope and can continue to be a trail blazer and eliminate excuses. I want to continue to be an inspirational leader for the future generation.
My greatest accomplishment to date
My greatest accomplishment is effectively working with different leaders to promote and bring change for the better. I worked with a team and together we raised over eight million dollars for scholarships for Take Stock In Children. I am also an author of a book series, "How to Overcome Obstacles from Your Past." I am blessed to be able to mentor students via Hillsborough Education Foundation. I continue by breaking the cycle of poverty off of my family through obtaining my master's degree, and pursuing my doctorate, and being the first in my family to do so.
My personal/professional goals
My goal is to obtain an administrative position in HCPS so I can inspire and lead on a greater capacity than what I am doing in my classroom. As an administrator, I would be closer to helping bridge the achievement gap in a greater scale.
In addition, I desire to consult with schools and leaders across the nation and globe to help raise gains across schools so that graduation rates of students can increase. I desire to continue to share my story so students can remain inspired to fight the urge to be average.
What/Who has inspired me the most
My inspiration comes from my faith in God and my walk as a Christian. My mentor provided through Take Stock in Children has been a great inspiration as she continues to encourage me to take all risks in order to achieve the most in life. In addition, my brother Timmy who died in a car crash is a great inspiration, as his last words was for me to get straight A's and not to drink or smoke. Lastly, my sister Charita, who fought breast cancer, gave me her last words of being the best teacher there is. With these people and factors, I must succeed.
I most want to be known/remembered for
I want to be remembered for someone who truly cared for others and was honest and inspired others.I desire that my speaking engagements would remain as impactful, that the TIM program and Rising Glory Productions would produce greatness, and that all would know that I loved God and loved people.
I participate in the following organizations/memberships
I am a member of the National Association of Professional Women, Take Stock in Children Alumni Alliance, Hillsborough Education Foundation and the Gates Millennium Alumni, Hillsborough Alliance of Black School Educators, PDK, Hillsborough Alliance of School Administrators, University of Florida Alumni Association, and more.
I have received the following Honors/Awards/Scholarships
I am the recipient of the Woman of the Year GSEW 2015, Teacher of the Year for 2014-2015, Take Stock in Children Alumni for the year of 2012-2013 and the Woman of the Year by the NAPW in 2012-2013.
I support the missions of these charities/volunteer my time
I support Take Stock in Children's motto for helping students via speaking engagements and more. I also do many motivational speaking engagements with the YMCA. I also am involved with the church choir and campus ministry.
I enjoy the following hobbies/interests
I enjoy reading, going to the beach, playing the saxophone and piano, going to shows and the opera.