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Mischa Tacchia (B.A. 2006, M.P.A. 2013) English Teacher, Indian Springs High School, Golden Apple Winner

Mischa Tacchia (B.A. 2006, M.P.A. 2013)
English Teacher, Indian Springs High School. 

Mischa TacchiaMischa Tacchia sees a global purpose to his teaching at Indian Springs High School in San Bernardino:  “I love having an impact on students . . . . teaching them not just their academics but also developing them as whole individuals” who are prepared both intellectually and interpersonally “for the real world.”  And his positive effect on students is clear.  In 2014, he won the prestigious Golden Apple Award for teaching excellence, an annual honor granted to only one secondary school teacher in San Bernardino City Unified School District.  

In addition to teaching his six periods of eleventh- and twelfth-grade English, Mischa serves in a variety of leadership roles for his school and district.  He mentors new teachers. He created district curriculum aligned with the Common Core standards. And he has evaluated schools applying for accreditation and coordinated his own school’s accreditation process.

Some years ago, Mischa also discovered that he had a knack for writing grants.  He nailed his first grant application—$200,000 for a new environmental education program in his district.  “It’s exhilarating to be able to pull that kind of money into our community for students . . . so I became obsessed,” he says.  Since then, he has written multiple other grants and received nearly $1,000,000 for career and music education programs in San Bernardino.

Mischa TacchiaMischa himself is product of San Bernardino public education, having gone to his district’s elementary and secondary schools before attending CSUSB, where he earned his B.A. in English (Creative Writing track) in 2006, and then a single-subject teaching credential (2009) and a Master of Public Administration degree (2013).

The English B.A., says Mischa, gave him the literary and writing expertise necessary for teaching his subject matter, particularly in his AP Language and Composition course, where “you really have to be on your game because it’s college level work.”  The creative writing track also prepared Mischa for “writing in my public administration program, grant writing, and all the different types of writing we’re required to do as educators that you don’t think of when you’re a college student.”

Mischa’s advice to current English majors?  “Look at other people who have the job or career you want . . . and use that as starting point to mold your own path to where you want to go.”


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