A group of Freedom High School Students, lead by teacher
Jennifer Cierech, recently met author, professor, and inspiration, Javier Ávila at Northampton Community College.
Javier Ávila’s distinguished career began in the Caribbean, where he taught English at the University of Puerto Rico for eight years. He moved to Pennsylvania and became a beloved educator at Northampton Community College. His extraordinary work with students earned him the 2015 Pennsylvania Professor of the Year Award sponsored by the Carnegie Foundation for the Advancement of Teaching and the Council for the Advancement and Support of Education.
In addition to his accomplishments in academia, Ávila is a renowned poet and novelist whose literary excellence propelled him to international recognition. His bestselling novel Different became an award-winning motion picture entitled Mientes. He frequently visits colleges to discuss his work and to motivate students. Audiences praise Ávila’s recent work for being a powerful voice for Latinos in the U.S.
Ávila’s show, the Trouble with my Name breaks barriers and embraces the diversity of a nation whose history is rich and colorful. The message transcends boundaries of race, ethnicity, and geography.
Cierech said she brought her a great group of Spanish 4 Honors and Future AP students to Ávila’s event at Community College and they came away from the experience excited.
“Ávila was outstanding and he told his story in the form of personal experiences through a slide show and poems he wrote,” Cierech said. “It was very inspiring, particularly for my Hispanic Students. He spoke of diversity, culture and stereotypes.”