Isabella Estrada – Mustangs Ahead
(LAKEWOOD RANCH, FL) – Tammy Harper is an LRHS chemistry teacher. Harper has been teaching for over 20 years but enjoyed an earlier career as a medical technician.
“I worked in the hospital setting. Anytime a doctor took body fluid, I would look at the fluid based on what the doctor ordered,” said Harper.
The job allowed her to work in many different departments, from drug testing to hematology. Harper had the opportunity to work in all branches of sciences.
“I loved having a lot of variability in my job,” said Harper. “I also enjoyed being an expert in many different subjects and having to be a problem solver.”
During her 10 years as a medical technician, she learned to love chemistry. With chemistry being the “basis of everything”, she really enjoyed being able to break that all down into different chemical reactions.
“Chemistry is the reason why everything happens, you can take your body and break it down into different chemical reactions,” Harper said. “I feel like that is just the starting point of everything and I love that idea because it feels like magic.
Harper said that she loves being a teacher. Teaching chemistry not only allows her to work with instruments and data, but she now gets to work with people.
“Young students are filled with so much vision. I love having the ability to be around inspiring people every day,” Harper said.
With being a medical technician, Harper can help show her students what a degree in chemistry would look like in the real world. She also wants to be able to show students that “no matter what job you have, that it is most important to be kind and caring”.