Mr. Jensen grew up outside of Salt Lake City, Utah. Curtis holds a BA in English from the University of Utah, and an MFA in Poetry from the Creative Writing Program at Brooklyn College CUNY. He has taught in classrooms ranging from 2nd grade through secondary and post secondary levels, instructing Language Arts, Geography, Creative Writing, and English as a Foreign Language. Prior to joining the faculty of Alma del Mar as a Lead Teacher, Mr. Jensen has worked as a volunteer teacher in Xi’an, China; a Peace Corps Volunteer in Zaliztsi, Ukraine; an Adjunct Lecturer at Brooklyn College and Kingsborough Community College in Brooklyn, New York as well as at Utah Valley University in Orem, Utah; a Geography and Creative Writing Teacher at South Davis Jr. High in Bountiful, Utah; English Teacher at Koliganek School in Koliganek, Alaska; and English Teacher at Sand Point School in Sand Point Alaska. In his spare time, Mr. Jensen enjoys traveling by bicycle with his wife Sarah, goofing off outside with their puppy Marvin, reading, writing, cooking and eating.
Why did you choose the Alma team?
I chose the Alma team because scholars come first at Alma Del Mar. Scholar-centered, high-quality instruction is the norm at Alma, and I am excited to join a team that makes learning at such high levels happen every day.
What do you hope to contribute to Alma?
I hope to help the scholars at Alma grow as writers, readers, and global citizens. I am psyched to join the Alma team and help build the faculty culture as well as share my teaching experience.
What is your top goal during your first year with Alma?
My top goal in my first year at Alma is to help the scholars achieve significant growth in their writing and reading skills while having a blast learning, reading and writing together about interesting stuff in my classroom.
What teacher made a difference in your life — how?
Mr. Navidomskis, the World History and Current Issues teacher at Davis High School made a difference in my life–he taught me that the world is best experienced in person, and that teaching is meaningful and can (and should) enact positive social change.
Why did you become involved in education?
I am a teacher because teaching can empower scholars to positively affect the world. Also, as a teacher, I learn every day I am on the job, especially from the scholars themselves. On top of that, working in a classroom is a blast: I love teaching and working to improve my instructional skills.
Where did you go to college? What did you like about your college?
I completed undergraduate studies at the University of Utah, and graduate studies at Brooklyn College, a school in the City University of New York. At both schools what I liked most was the pace and breadth of learning. I loved reading and writing widely about a wide range of subjects, and at the end of each semester, I was always psyched at how much I had learned and done.
What is your favorite place?
Rather than 1 specific location, I think my favorite place is traveling by bicycle someplace new with my wife Sarah. Nothing beats a good bike trip, and nothing beats a good bike trip with Sarah, traveling with her is the best!
What is your favorite food?
Likewise, checking out new foods in new places is awesome–I like just about every kind of food out there, and trying out some sort of new, strange dish is an excellent way to wrap up a long day of pedaling the bike.