Tony Jordan

Class Year

’16

Hometown

Island Lake, Illinois

Major(s)

Mathematics

Minor(s)

Secondary Education and Spanish

A mathematics major is valuable in a variety of different fields ranging from education, to research, to business. Tony Jordan has decided to take his mathematic skills down the education path by becoming a high school math teacher in Kenosha after Carthage.

“Math classes help students develop vital critical thinking skills and problem-solving skills, which are necessary in arguably every single profession.”

To help prepare for his teaching career, Tony tutors a high school student and Carthage students. He also provides support for English language learners at Kenosha’s Mahone Middle School. “These experiences have totally changed my life,” he says. “Because of these opportunities, I am looking into teaching in another country.”

Career goal

“I am hoping to obtain a job teaching high school math in Kenosha. I absolutely love this area, and I have made so many great connections and memories here that I do not want to leave behind.”

How have Carthage faculty had an impact on your life or Carthage career?

“Probably one of the best professors I have ever had is Professor Patty Rieman. She is an absolutely amazing teacher who makes the class interesting and keeps your attention the whole time. She has motivated me to try my best and always pushes my limits.”

Favorite class

“My favorite class at Carthage so far has been Spanish 3110. I had a ton of fun learning how to speak the language and completing a wide range of activities. This class prepared me for the proficiency test. We learned while having fun, which is one of the best ways to learn. Because we had to take part in a large number of activities, our class became more of a community than a classroom.”

Campus involvement

“My motto when coming to Carthage was to make the most out of every experience. I am a huge proponent of extracurricular involvement and I constantly try to keep myself fairly busy. I am involved in the international fraternity Delta Upsilon, the Student Alumni Association, Concert Band, Omicron Delta Kappa, Math Club, and I am a Student Ambassador.”

Toughest class

“The hardest class I have ever taken at Carthage, and in my life, was Abstract Algebra. This class was composed almost entirely of proofs. I had a hard time adjusting to this new type of class where numbers are not encouraged, only variables. However, after successfully passing this class, I have learned how to view problems in a different manner and I have a better grasp on my problem-solving skills.”

Internships or on-campus employment

“Being in education, I will have a built-in student teaching internship. However, I currently tutor a high school student and Carthage students, and once a week I get to have the coolest tutoring experience at Mahone Middle School. I go there once a week for two hours and provide support for English language learning students. This experience has totally changed my life, and because of this awesome opportunity, I am looking into teaching in another country.”

Opportunities at Carthage

“During J-Term I had the opportunity to spend a month in Guatemala learning about the environmental economic situations of a few locations throughout the country. During this trip we spent 17 days in a small socialist village and had the ability to interact and understand a different culture. After those 17 days of amazing food, playing with the kids, and adventures around the town and surrounding areas, we spent a day at a beach house learning about shrimp breeding. The final part of our trip took the class to one of the most beautiful locations in Guatemala, Lago Atitlán. We had one full week of nothing but pure exploration and learning about water quality. When we were not sampling, we got to explore the towns, souvenir shop, kayak, eat in a variety of restaurants, and even take yoga classes. Hands down, my J-Term trip to Guatemala truly changed my life and will be one of the best experiences probably in my life.”

Favorite moments and memories at Carthage

“I have loved almost everything I have done here. Some of the best memories I have made include dancing at the block party, hanging out with my friends, and I absolutely love the encounters you have with people all over campus, from the cafeteria to the Clausen Center.”

Favorite spot on campus

“I have a few favorite spots on campus. Hedberg Library is one, especially when I need to study and get some homework done. I also love the new Science Center with the cool tables and chairs, and the easy accessibility to the professors. I also love the cafeteria because it’s where I get to reunite with my friends and have nice catch up sessions while eating.”

Biggest surprise so far

“The biggest surprise has been the relationships I have developed with my professors. In high school I would have never talked to any of my teachers once the last bell rang. Here, I have my professors’ personal cell phone numbers and find myself constantly going to their office hours, not only for help, but also to chat and ask for advice. When I was sick, one of my professors even texted me asking how I was doing and then emailed me the notes from the class.”

What would your 8-year-old self think of you now?

“My 8-year-old self would have been utterly surprised. I come from a family of teachers and for the longest time, even into my college career, I knew I never wanted to be a teacher. Ever since I was around 7 or 8, I have always told my family, friends, and teachers that I wanted to go into dentistry. I would have never guessed where my college career has taken me.”

Why should other students consider your major? What advice do you have for them?

“The best advice I can give to anyone who wants to be a math major is that the classes are difficult, but the teachers are always available for help, and your problem-solving skills will become exceptional.”