Consuelo Mendez STEM Academy

Assistant Directors

Yolanda Rodriguez Pacheco, M. Ed.

Assistant Director Consuelo Mendez STEM Academy

My name is Yolanda Rodriguez Pacheco. I was born in the city of Silao, in the state of Guanajuato in Mexico. I am of 8 siblings and we were all born in Mexico. My father, Marcos Rodriguez had a wonderful job working different types of crops throughout Mexico so all 8 of us were born in different states. I’m not sure why he came to the States, but he arrived here in the late 1960’s as a migrant worker. My mother Maria Epifania Pacheco, came with all my siblings to visit with the mentality to return, but we never did.

I started 2nd grade in Waukegan, Illinois in an all English classroom and eventually graduated from Waukegan East HS. I was convinced by my best friend to apply to Northeastern IL University in Chicago and I was accepted! I moved to Chicago and completed three years but then decided to travel and live outside the US. When I returned back to the United States, I worked at the International Museum of Surgical Science part time while finishing school then got a full-time position at the Mexican Fine Arts Center Museum (now the National Museum of Mexican Art) when I graduated with a bachelors in Spanish with a minor in Latin American History. After working in non-profits, I enrolled full-time and completed my masters at the University of Illinois in Chicago (UIC) in Instructional Leadership and Curriculum.

I have been fortunate to have worked with young people and the Latino community my entire professional career. When I began teaching science after my masters at Telpochcalli Community School in Chicago, I automatically knew that teaching was my true passion! Teaching 5-8 Science was the best job in the world!

Texas was my next stop and I continued teaching science at Cedar Creek Intermediate then I decided to return to school to get a second masters at Concordia University and get my principal certification and I did that while working at CCIS.

I took a job as an Assistant Principal at Blanco Vista Elementary with Hays CISD then became the AP at Cedar Creek Intermediate and finally came to MENDEZ three years ago. Mendez has been a true home for me. The teachers, students, and parents are the true hearts of the Dove Springs community. I’m so thankful that this campus found me and I enjoy being here everyday!

 


Roxanne Walker, M. Ed.

Assistant Director Consuelo Mendez STEM Academy

My name is Roxanne Walker. I was born in Boston, Massachusetts and grew up in Tampa, Florida. I have a Bachelor degree in the Visual Arts and Art History from the University of South Florida. I completed my second degree, a Master of Education in Curriculum and Instruction, from Lamar University in 2014. In 2005, I began teaching in the social behavioral services (SBS) unit at a middle school in Florida. In 2011, I moved to Bradenton Beach where I had an opportunity to teach reading intervention at an alternative high school. In the summer of 2011, I moved to Austin, TX and was fortunate enough to land a job teaching 7th grade ELA at Mendez MS. I have been here ever since.

After my first year at Mendez, I started to recognize there were some barriers to our students having adequate access to education. There were several factors involved, but I knew I needed to put myself in a place where I could start making real change. I made an impact to the students in my classes, but our campus had almost 1000 students, and we were struggling. There was a vacant ELA instructional coach position on our campus, so I took a chance and applied. Unfortunately, I did not get the job, and one of the reasons was that I did not hold a master’s degree. That next day, I applied to Lamar University and fast-tracked my way to earning a masters with a 4.0.

Fortunately, my principal saw leadership potential in me, and the next year, I was able to apply for the position of Literacy Specialist for Mendez MS. Hard work paid off, and I was able to make decisions on a larger scale. After guiding curriculum, instruction, and implementing campus-wide initiatives for five years, I realized I was not satisfied with my level of impact. I had received my principal’s certification and decided it was time take the next step in making real change. I became an assistant director alongside two other amazing friends.

Throughout my ten years at Mendez MS, I have grown so much as an educator, but I know I have so much more to learn. I am lucky enough to work with two amazing assistant directors who help me laugh and learn every day. I am also so very grateful to work with a faculty and staff who truly value our community and want to see students succeed and thrive. I know I have not reached my full potential as a leader and will continue to strive to contribute to a positive campus community that fosters building strong relationships and kindness.


Juan Haney II, M.Ed.

Assistant Director Consuelo Mendez STEM Academy

 Photo of Assistant Director Juan Haney

My journey as an educator began 7 years ago as a long-term substitute here at Mendez Middle School. After my first semester as a sub, I transitioned into a TA position in SBS, and eventually took on the role of a 6th and 7th grade science teacher. From there, I transitioned into the role of campus administrator.

While serving as an administrator at Mendez, I’ve encountered so many incredible people who inspire me. These same individuals, along with my kids, have taught me so many lessons, such as the importance of consistency and patience. Education is a marathon (not a sprint) and the imprint that we leave on our students may take years to show itself.

I once read a quote that stated, “The one that plants the tree rarely gets to enjoy its shade”. Which is an accurate description of our role as educators. Nonetheless, when a student does come back to Mendez and tells you that you’ve had a positive impact on their life, it’s a euphoric feeling that simply can’t be duplicated. There are so many extraordinary people on this campus, who come and fight for our students daily. These same individuals allow me to stay motivated and give these kids the best version of myself. All of that being said, I’m extremely grateful to be a part of the Mendez Middle School family.