SAN ANTONIO -- Whatever the subject in Brenda Carillo's ninth grade biology class at McCollum High School, part of the lesson remains the same.
"I learned a while back it's not what I teach, but how I teach them as individuals. What's most important is how I value them," explained Carillo.
She wants her ninth graders to leave her class with a confidence.
"I want each person to reach their full potential. I encourage them to find balance in their life and to be in a field they're passionate about," Carillo said.
"She wants us to be something in our lives, do something in our lives and that's why she has us work hard." said ninth grade student Karla Rivera.
Brenda Carillo has spent 28 years in the classroom and she brings a fresh enthusiasm every day.
"When we come in here there's always something new that we're experiencing. We're always learning something new, always a fun environment. We always have a new activity. Never a dull moment in this room," smiled ninth grader Roger Santos.
Carillo decided to go into teaching science to inspire young women.
"I just wanted to be able to inspire young women to go into science. I think it's important that women know they can be successful in a field that is dominated by males," she explained.
This exceptional educator has seen a lot of change during her time teaching.
"A lot of people don't get it. Our kids have huge issues these days today. They have a lot on their plates, they have a lot of competition that we didn't have when we went through school. They have global competition, they have high stakes testing, they are dealing will all this instant information. They are living in a completely different world than we lived in. We as educators need to embrace that and try to work with that in the classroom," said Carillo.
It's a challenge she has embraced.
"I feel blessed. It's really the best profession there is to outlive your life," Carillo said.