New Faculty Interview Series: Daniel Song
Photography by Amanda G. ’15
What did you do before you came to College Prep?
Before I came to CPS, I was a lawyer. I was practicing in San Francisco for six years with two law firms that specialized in litigation, which means that you try cases. Later I decided I wanted to change careers and start teaching, so I went back to school in the evenings and the weekends while I was still practicing law. Then I worked as a TA in graduate school and also taught at private tutoring centers. Then I had the opportunity to substitute teach for Mr. Tucker last semester and teach for Mr. Wilson this semester, and that is how I came to CPS.
Did you go to school in the Bay Area?
No, I actually went to UC San Diego for my undergraduate, and studied law at UC Davis. I’ve been public school- educated my whole life so this is a new change for me, and it’s really nice. I like how CPS supports the students, teachers, and faculty; it’s a really nice experience.
So what was your first impression of CPS?
Well first, it’s such a nice campus. Taking the tour around and seeing the open design was great. My first impression of the students was that they were very courteous of their peers and of me as well, along with every other faculty and staff member. It was my first impression and still sticks with me.
What do you hope to achieve here at CPS?
I want to get people interested in history. I love history, and I hope my enthusiasm rubs off on the students. I know most people from College Prep won’t go on to study history in college or anything in the humanities but I think history is an important facet of our lives because any decision you make about politics, race, and justice relates to history. And in order to make an informed decision, it helps to know history. History makes you a better and more aware citizen.
What was your high school like?
I went to College Park in Pleasant Hill, which isn’t actually too far from here. It’s very different from CPS, though. My graduating class started with 420-430 kids and graduated 400 students. It was a much bigger school. There were probably around 1500 kids; it was a fairly typical public school experience, with 30-40 students per classroom.
Did you like your US History teacher?
I loved my US History teacher! Mr. Eckdahl, I still remember his name. He was very much into social justice and social movements. He was one of the teachers who got me interested in and inspired me to think about history and how it affects society today.