An elbow to the face during a friendly game of basketball helped determine a career path for Neema Dad ’12. He long had been interested in healthcare, but losing a front tooth gave him a chance to take a closer look—literally—at dentistry.
He liked what he saw: a commitment to healthcare, interpersonal communication, continuity of patient care, and the opportunity to establish a sense of community. Neema has had several acceptances for professional school and will enroll this fall to prepare for a career in dentistry, with an interest in orthodontics.
Already, however, he has taken an entrepreneurial step, last fall launching Elements to Success Tutoring Services, offering tutoring in math, physics, biology, and chemistry for high school and college students in Collin County and Dallas.
A business and biology major, Neema has the foundation for both efforts—and experience in the area of tutoring, both as a client and a tutor. He participated in study sessions at the Austin College Academic Skills becoming a peer tutor himself in biology, chemistry, business, and economics. He has observed that the highest demand for tutoring seems to be in chemistry, math, biology, and physics—the areas his company addresses.
But Neema is not looking just for profits or simply to add another competitor in the tutoring business. He is concerned with providing better learning opportunities for students and ultimately, making a difference in education in America. Reductions in education budgets, he knows, mean increased class sizes and limited individual attention. He sees his company as a means to fill the gap. “Our goal is to develop a knowledge base for the student, a foundational, fundamental understanding. We don’t focus on format but build skills, motivate, and teach to the level needed.”
Also, the company will donate 10 percent of the cost of each tutoring session to further education through a program such as Donors Choose, which will directly benefit teachers, students, and schools across America. “My motto,” Neema said, “is that at Elements to Success we help ‘build education by building education.”
Neema completed courses for his Austin College degree in December. He will focus on building the tutoring business until he begins dental school this fall.
Neema said lessons learned through the Posey Leadership Center Institute also are crucial aspects of his preparation.
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