We are thrilled to recognize all-star Graider Daniela Purpuro as our March Graider of the Month. Daniela is a senior at Cornell University in the School of Industrial and Labor Relations, and she has consistently received rave reviews from teachers and students for the quality and care of her work.
Passionate about public service, Daniela is deeply involved in community outreach, focused particularly on educational opportunities both on and off campus.
In addition to her rigorous courseload and work at The Graide Network, Daniela serves in an after-school program at a local elementary school designed to expose kids to college. She takes her “Little Buddy” to events on campus and talks about what going to college means to her. At Ithaca-based Cornell, there are always fun things kids love to see, especially demonstrations at the Dairy School.
On academic inequality. Daniela’s education courses for her Law & Society minor were particularly enlightening as she saw the connections between courses on housing inequality and academic inequality.
“When it comes to academic inequality, I realized it is all interconnected. I see all the other problems like housing, transportation. There are small and big things that add up and exacerbate issues in schools for kids. I also see inequality being such a challenge because it’s so segmented based on what district and state you live in. Federal initiatives can only go so far. That is huge barrier to solving these problems.”
What have you learned during your time as a Graider?
I really built my own skills in terms of analyzing work and giving feedback. Seeing so many types of student work was enlightening to see some of the students who struggle and realize there is a tremendous necessity for them to get this feedback.
If you could change any one thing about how classrooms or schools today work, what would it be?
I think a lot of schools, especially the lower grades, focus on standardized testing. But I don't think the students benefit all that much. Instead, they need to get the personalized feedback to grow as individuals.
What is your best tip for other Graiders?
Familiarize yourself with the rubric first. If anything is unclear, immediately communicate with the teacher because the quality of the rubric impacts your work the most.
Congratulations, Daniela, on being our March Graider of the Month!