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Kayla Urquidi

2014 Fellow
San Francisco International High School
San Francisco, California

Kayla grew up in sunny San Diego, Calif. As a natural in the water, she was hired as a swimming instructor. She enjoyed working in this capacity, keeping the job for seven years.

While studying at Brown University, Kayla realized that many of her extracurricular activities involved teaching—a career that she had never previously considered. Through participation in various projects, she was exposed to different educational environments, including project-based learning. As a junior, she studied “away” in New York City at the Bank Street College of Education. Simultaneously, she taught a semester science unit on the last remaining natural forest in Manhattan to second and third grade students at a progressive public school. This experience helped shape her views on the way education could and should be done, and inspired her to pursue teaching as a profession. Kayla enrolled in the Stanford Teacher Education Program to learn about the practice of teaching.

As a member of the San Francisco Teacher Residency Program, Kayla will teach in the San Francisco Unified School District. In addition to teaching, she will study the district to improve equity and achievement for historically underserved students in the highest-needs schools.

Milestones in Kayla’s life include becoming the first person in her family to graduate from college and traveling solo for one year, through New Zealand and Argentina.



I decided to enter a master’s program and become a Knowles fellow because I realize the time and effort it takes to develop as a teacher

Kayla Urquidi
2014 Fellow