Videos

By Roadtrip Nation

Rodney Robinson

Highlight

Milestones

My road in life has been direct.
Growing up, I was inspired by my mother, who was always giving back and engaging with the community.
Being brought up in a rural school system, I struggled with culturally outdated lessons and racial discrimination—that experience made me decide to become a teacher and help students like me.
After high school, I went to Virginia State University, which provided the culturally affirming education I needed in order to build up my confidence.
After a little bit of a struggle through my first couple of years as a teacher, I started teaching at Armstrong High School in Richmond, Virginia.
Armstrong High School was racially and economically segregated from the rest of the city, but I loved teaching at the school and working with that population.
After 12 years, I was feeling some burnout with teaching—I still wanted to teach and work with the same population, but I also needed some sort of change.
A friend of mine had become the principal at the Richmond Juvenile Detention Center, so I decided to join them and teach at the detention center—I went from teaching 1,200 kids to 60 kids.
I’ve adopted a collaborative teaching style and am able to give my students the attention they need to grow—my efforts were recognized nationally when I was named 2019 National Teacher of the Year!
Keep following my journey

Education

High School
Bachelor
History, General
Virginia State University
Graduate
Educational Administration and Supervision
Virginia Commonwealth University

Career

Teacher

I teach social studies in a juvenile detention center.

Career Roadmap

Roadmap
My work combines:
My work combines:
Education
Government
Teaching / Mentoring

Advice for Getting Started

Here's the first step for everyone

If you want to become a teacher, go into it honestly as yourself. Be honest with your students and be yourself. Students deserve honesty. They also connect best with the teachers who are completely themselves.

Hurdles

The Noise I Shed

From Peers:

"Teaching is not for you."

Challenges I Overcame

Racial Discrimination