LifeChanger of the Year Nominee Profile

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Tiffany Tran-Parta

Position: Sixth Grade Science Teacher
School: Meadow Park Middle School
School District: Beaverton School District
City, State: Beaverton, OR

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Tiffany Tran-Parta was nominated by her colleague, Susan Duncan.

Ms. Tran-Parta brings a great love for people and nature into her classroom, which comes alive with the curiosity of young people under the kind gaze of saltwater fish. With her skin-diving experience and love for the ocean, she brings a world many of us never see into students' hearts and minds. The proof of her impact is the engagement of 100% of those she is teaching each day. Each student's good ideas and efforts are valued because she sets each of them up for success. She knows what it takes to learn a second language and attend school in an unfamiliar country, so learning language and learning science fit together perfectly. Besides, her ideas for collecting data by building solar ovens, solar cars, water pumps, trebuchets, and programming human-like hands means there are always solutions to be found. She cares deeply on a daily basis, not just once and a while with a special project, but every moment of every day at school with her students. 

"Her smile lights up a room, and her determination can move mountains," said Duncan. "She has created an ongoing fundraising project that involves families, teachers, administrators and the community collecting cans and bottles. It is the involvement of everyone working together that brightens our day, and the funding has tripled our budget for science supplies. She brings in speakers via computer to inspire students in their research at Outdoor School, too."

Field trips are just one of her specialties. Her organizational and communication skills at the school, district, and state level show her ability to think systematically and include many voices in finding solutions. When she is present in her room and at meetings, the atmosphere is professional and hopeful, and everyone feels appreciated and part of the team. 

Ms. Tran-Parta has walked the halls of Meadow Park with the kind of professionalism and kindness all schools need to experience on a daily basis. Do you need support with a lesson? She has a week's worth at her fingertips. Want to try a new technology? She can help you build a vending machine with a programmable chip in an afternoon. Are you recovering from an illness? She has a pan of enchiladas and pot of soup ready in an instant. Need some ideas for guiding students into Science Math Engineering or Technology (STEM) fields with high-level thinking and writing skills? She's got them planned!

Her high moral and ethical standards are found in her detailed and timely routines and recordkeeping, so she can speak with families with both an individual's potential and heart in mind.

"Ms. Tran-Parta has changed the lives of thousands of individuals young, old and in-between at Meadow Park. She shined like gold when she arrived and is as bright as platinum, today," said Duncan. "Her science lessons and her spirit for learning never tarnish. With her insights, each student's future is bright, and everyone whose life she touches glows brighter, too."

Comments (5)

Megan Poole Posted over a year ago

I was very fortunate to have Tiffany Tran-Parta as my cooperating teacher during student teaching. She was a phenomenal mentor and showed me many ways to engage students in school as well as creative and inventive ways to deliver information in a way that sticks. I've continued to have the opportunity to work with Tiffany over the past few years and it has been so very helpful in my early teaching career. Tiffany is helpful and kind, always willing to drop what she is doing to help a student or a colleague. She is somehow constantly thinking of new lessons and ideas to engage her students, and she is always seeking collaboration opportunities with colleagues. Tiffany is a phenomenal teacher and her students love her class- she is certainly a lifechanger in every sense of the word.

Janet Sanders Posted over a year ago

Tiffany is an inspiration to us all. She makes the science come alive to her students. Learning in her classroom is always engaging and fun. A few years ago we all had to teach a design class during our homeroom time. She developed an easy to follow project for the kids that many of us were able to easily implement. It involved designing and building a food truck. Kids had to come up with a catchy name and a fusion menu (thus encouraging kids to think globally) as well. At the end of the project she had an actual food truck owner come and talk with each of our classes about what it takes to own and run a small business. The bonus: getting to buy and eat some of the food truck food.

Wendy Christensen Posted over a year ago

Tiffany and I have been teaching partners for three years. It has been the best experience for me as a new teacher to be able to work with a seasoned teacher who is so caring and compassionate not only about her students but also about her subject matter. She is always coming up with amazingly engaging and informative projects and lessons for our students. I love supporting the endeavors she takes our students on. Her commitment to making lessons engaging and impactful is seen in the discoveries and finished products coming from our students. She also teaches our students how to be good citizens with respect to environment and their community. From our students: "She is awesome because she gives us good things to do and she is amazing at teaching!" "Her stories are the best." "She actually cares about her students." If that is not evidence enough, I don't know what else could be said about her. It is a pleasure and honor to work with such a great colleague.

Mark McClure Posted over a year ago

She works so hard for her students. Many times this results in a positive change for these students. They are often enthusiastic about a variety of hands-on activities that are highly engaging.

Jennifer Mann Posted over a year ago

Tiffany has brought so much joy, interest and curiosity around science into her students' lives. We are all so lucky to have her in our school community. Tiffany is an inspiration who is changing what education looks like- students learning content and practicing soft skills through engaging projects while having a lot of fun!