Officially, Isabel Garcia is the receptionist at Democracy Prep at the Agassi Campus, but her role on campus reaches far beyond the school’s front desk. On a regular day, you will find her translating documents, coaching the girl’s softball and basketball teams, and bringing her daughter and nephew to DPAC for school.
As Ms. Garcia puts it, “You name it, I’ll do it. I’m here to help in any way possible that I can.”
Ms. Garcia’s dual perspective as both a DPAC parent and staff member gives her a unique insight. She can easily relate to DPAC parents. Reggie Galloway, Ms. Garcia’s colleague, believes this makes Ms. Garcia even more important to the campus.
“As a parent of two DPAC scholars herself, Ms. Garcia is uniquely positioned to support our scholars and families with the accurate information, timely service, and most importantly empathy,” Galloway said.
Ms. Garcia’s role as the go-to person for information and guidance extends beyond her role as receptionist. After the school day is over, Ms. Garcia coaches the girl’s basketball team from 3:45-4:15 and then the softball team until 5:30.
Part of her job as a coach is mentoring scholars who are on the team or have an interest in joining. Ms. Garcia made a personal connection with a scholar who transferred to the school from California. The scholar wanted to join the softball team but was struggling academically, preventing her from being eligible. She came to Ms. Garcia to seek guidance about how to improve her academic standing so that she could join the team.
“I told her ‘You can do it, you just have to use the tools that you have, like tutoring, after school clubs, your teachers, and ask for help,’” Ms. Garcia said. “You have to do your part, because when you go to college, no one is going to do it for you.”
If there is one thing she wants her scholars to learn, it’s the importance of commitment.
“What I really want my kids to get from school is how to be dedicated,” Ms. Garcia said. “I make them accountable. I try to teach them that being committed is hard, but it’s very important.”
Ms. Garcia believes this is a valuable lesson that will set her scholars up for success in college and beyond.
“When you get to the real world, when you go to to work, other people will rely on you to do your part,” Ms. Garcia said. “When you have your own family, you have to be committed, because guess what? You have to take care of them. You don’t know what life is going to throw at you.”
Ms. Garcia models the commitment she wants to instill in her scholars.
“As long as Democracy Prep wants me, I’ll be here and I’ll be putting forth 110% as always.”