Dru (left) and Javian Pierson (Scotlandville ’17)

Story by Kenya Carney, Class of 2020

Almost 25 percent of BRYC’s college graduates have pursued or are pursuing careers in education. Alumna Druscilla Dyer graduated from Belaire High School in 2010 and Loyola University New Orleans in 2015. Druscilla graduated with a degree in liberal arts focused in psychology, and she is now a special education teacher at Democracy Prep, a North Baton Rouge charter school. She is also serving as a BRYC College Mentor. At Democracy Prep, Druscilla works with fifth grade students to help them bridge the gap between where the student is and should be academically. Druscilla takes the student and helps them reach grade level in math, reading, or any subject the student is struggling in.

Once Druscilla graduated high school, she started to work in retail. Over time she realized that retail was not something she enjoyed doing, but she knew that she wanted to give back to the community. Druscilla decided to pursue a career in education. Druscilla grew up attending schools in low-income communities, and she was especially energized at the thought of working in similar schools as a teacher. Now that she is doing just that, Druscilla wants to give her students more than a teacher and be someone they can count on. “I want my students to be excited to be in my class every day, Monday through Friday,” Druscilla said.

With all occupations, there are the pros and cons; with teaching the pros are making connections with the students and giving them something to be excited about other than recess and seeing their classmates. Druscilla said some of the challenges of being a teacher are receiving disrespect from children and students not seeing the amount of work you are putting in for them to be successful.

Prior to attending Loyola, Druscilla attended Baton Rouge Community College. While there she encountered a classmate who could not read, and she asked him “How did you make it past grade school without learning how to read?” After that Dyer was motivated to become a reading specialist.

Even though the school system is not perfect, there are teachers like Druscilla putting in the work to make sure the school system is the best it possibly can be. Although it is hard and stressful being a teacher, caring people like Dyer can make a huge difference in the education system.

Alumni Educators:

  • Liz Cheri-Anderson, Parkview Baptist ’12, Southeastern ’16, front desk receptionist at BASIS Baton Rouge
  • Tesia Burton, Episcopal ’12, Guilford College ’16, former teacher working community events
  • Koryne Cage, BRMHS ’13, LSU ’18, ACT coordinator at BRYC
  • Druscilla “Dru” Dyer, Belaire ’10, Loyola New Orleans ’15, reading specialist at Democracy Prep Baton Rouge
  • Jayde Encalade, BRMHS ’10, University of Houston ’16, Teach For America alumna and Tulane Law student
  • Aliyah Furqan, Capitol ’13, University of Alabama ’17, Teach For America-Alabama corps member
  • Markeisha Hill, Belaire ’11, Wesleyan University ’16, BRYC’s first QuestBridge scholar currently teaching in Oregon
  • Dominique “Dom” Ricks, Belaire ’10, University of Wisconsin-Madison ’14 (bachelor’s) and ’16 (master’s), Teach For America-South Louisiana alumus and Dean of Students at Glacier Creek Middle School in Madison
  • Jerlisa Robinson, Tara ’12, Southern ’18, teacher at Tara High School
  • Alyssia White, Scotlandville ’12, Northwestern State ’16, pursuing a Master of Arts in Student Affairs in Higher Education at Northwestern State