Thursday, May 23, 2013

20th Anniversary: Generations of Inspiration

By: Nadia Rendon

"I had many dreams as a child. First I wanted to be a music teacher, then librarian, then work with dogs because I like dogs a lot, then an elementary teacher, translator, guide, a lot of things. Even a biologist and a journalist, but then I decided to go for math."

Mrs. Chemeris
Here at KIS, when you think of Mrs. Chemeris, you think of math. Over the 19 years Mrs. Chemeris has been teaching at KIS, she has gained the respect and care of her students and colleagues as a teacher. We recognize her as a math teacher now, but others may have known her in a different profession. Scientist, journalist, language teacher, and mathematician; Mrs. Chemeris has tried and succeeded at all, showing the world how more than one dream can come true in life.

Throughout her career, Mrs. Chemeris had always studied math: from a basic level up until her post graduate degree in the applied mathematics department of Shevchenko University; however, despite pursuing mathematics, she wasn't always good in math. "I started to like math in seventh grade, but in fifth or sixth grade I was struggling with math to tell the truth. But then in seventh grade I changed schools and I had an awesome teacher."

After this teacher's positive influence on Mrs. Chemeris, she became good in math and was even able to share first place with unbeatable Moscow in math competitions during the Soviet Union: something that had never occured before. Mrs. Chemeris described this teacher to be her "teacher of life" and till this date remembers him, and sometimes tries to apply his teaching methods in her classes.

At the same time, Mrs. Chemeris enrolled in a second education: journalism. "I worked during the day with math, and journalism in the evening. I worked hard",she giggled, "I came home very late." Her hard work payed off since later she obtained a job in journalism writing articles about Kiev landmarks and history, became a math teacher, and even had a position as a scientific employee. Working as a mentor in her university, she was exposed to, and enjoyed working with, young people. "I made life lasting friends. One girl who I helped is still my friend and was even there for my wedding."

Mrs. Chemeris and the 2012/2013 Secondary Math Counts Team
"My first years teaching in KIS, I was actually a Russian and Ukranian teacher", Mrs. Chemeris reflected. Mrs. Chemeris also taught math when there was opportunity, and as administration witnessed her expertiese in the mathematical field, they shifted her area of focus, and so she became the math teacher we have all come to know and love.

Her favorite part of teaching is watching students grow, celebrating the smallest to biggest of her students' victories: from passing a test for the first time to getting accepted to good universities to study math. " I am so proud of my students who have reached a high level of education and obtained succesful careers" she stated, and she hopes to be as influential to her students as her life teacher was to her, helpnig them achieve their many life long dreams.