Alexis Lambrou | Ferrin

Country of origin: United States
Project location: United States
Program: Magnum Foundation Fellowship
Year: 2012

Any thought of law school vanished the moment Ferrin Bujan stepped into a classroom as a student teacher. It was her last year at Queens College, where she was majoring in math and education, and she had been a little uncertain about her future.

“The world turned,” she said. “This is where I wanted to be. I enjoyed helping students who were struggling and knowing I could make a difference for them.”

Ms. Bujan, 24, is now in her third year teaching ninth-grade math at Brooklyn Community Arts and Media High School in Fort Greene. It is not an easy job: she gets up before dawn so she can be at school early, spends the day teaching, then goes home to grade papers and do her own homework for the master’s degree she is pursuing in special education. She teaches on Saturdays and during the summer. Even her social life revolves around other teachers.