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7 Things About Carlos Trujillo


What inspired you to do this kind of work?

As a child of immigrants, I have a deep and real appreciation for the transformative effects of a great education. I’ve always pursued my passions and one of my great passions is learning and learning from others. There is no better way to do both than to teach.


What is your position here and how long have you worked at O’Dowd?

I am a math teacher and the math department chairperson. I have been here since 2011. I am also the moderator of the Xiang Qi Club.


What is the best piece of advice you ever received (generally – it doesn’t have to be related to O’Dowd)?

“I know it seems hard sometimes but remember one thing. Through every dark night, there’s a bright day after that. So no matter how hard it gets, stick your chest out, keep ya head up … and handle it.” — Tupac Shakur


What is your favorite thing about your job?

Coaching up the students to become calm and confident problem solvers. I have a strong confidence in myself and my abilities that springs from being a doer. By cultivating a growth mindset in our students, and modeling a pragmatic approach to learning, I enjoy every moment that I spend collaborating with my students on this important task so that they can go forth and do great things in this world.


What about your field or position do you think would surprise people the most?

That teaching can be a very rewarding experience. Teaching in Oakland makes it even more rewarding.


What is the most interesting or surprising thing about you?

I am an enigma, wrapped in a mystery, cocooned inside a conundrum. Seriously, though, I guess it could be that I love to read and write. I am a huge reader, and I write poetry, short stories and raps. I am a logophile and don’t believe a person could know too many words.


If you could rescue only one thing from your burning office, what would it be?

My copy of the Bhagavad Gita — OM.


Bonus Questions

What is your favorite kind of music/what are your favorite bands?

I grew up listening to a lot of of hip hop, rock and Mexican music (Tribe Called Quest, Tupac, Nirvana, Rage Against the Machine, Los Tigres del Norte, Vicente Fernández, Victor Yturbe ), then I got into reggae and electronic music (Lee Scratch Perry, Richard D. James, Daft Punk, DJ Shadow), classical music ( Strauss, Dvorak, Bach), and, recently, jazz and classical piano music (Miles Davis, Glenn Gould). Most recently I’ve gotten into lo-fi hip hop (Eevee, Juan Rios, Bluestaeb) and some particularly experimental hip hop (Eprom). Music is another passion of mine and I could easily list 100 other important artists like James Brown, J Dilla, Peanut Butter Wolf, Portishead, Squarepusher, Handsome Boy Modeling School, Del Tha Funky Homosapien, Los Panchos, Los Bukis, Johnny Cash, U2, Radiohead, Oasis …


What is your favorite sports team or who is your favorite individual athlete?

My teams are the Oakland Raiders and FC Barcelona. My favorite individual athletes include Diego Maradona, Bo Jackson and KawhiLeonard.

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