Clark is a pre-calculus teacher and head track coach at G.W. Carver High School. He holds a Bachelors in Mathematics from Alabama State University, a Masters in Secondary Mathematics, and a Masters in Educational Leadership from UAB. Clark entered the teaching field in his hometown in 2002, teaching math at Wilkerson Middle, then Whatley, and Hayes K-8. It was in the summer of 2013 that Mr. Clark finally moved back to Carver, his alma mater.
At Carver, Mr. Clark is now a part of the teaching teams for the Academies of Engineering and Health Sciences – programs that seek to make high school subjects relevant to students’ career interests, a theory that shows in Clark’s work. To keep his students interested in math, Mr. Clark sticks to three main ideas: “Relate math to the next time they’ll be using it, relate math to career fields they may be interested in, and relate math to everyday and/or standard life uses.” But Clark knows that there is more to teaching kids than getting them to pick-up classroom content; he said that most important piece of advice he has for fellow educators is to “establish relationships with students and continue them.” This can help you anticipate their needs, Clark says, but it doesn’t hurt to also “expect the unexpected.” He says, “[Our] kids are always coming from left field.”
This year Ed was lucky enough to work with Clark as school liaison for College 101. When asked to reflect on the experiences students got as part of College 101, Clark said the program was “a great resource for introducing kids to colleges and careers, the different functions of college, and the whole of college life,” a point that Ed and UAB were hoping to emphasize. “These are the experiences our students need,” Clark said. “They need that perspective on what will expected of them once they attend college – because we’re going to do everything we can to get them there.”