Dr. Aura Imbarus is an awarded educator, journalist, life coach; on top of her current teaching jobs, she is ready to tackle one more task: a position on the Palos Verdes Unified School District, Board of Education. As a qualified educator, who for 22 years has been in the trenches of the American educational system, she understands the daily challenges of teens. Her passion for learning and teaching makes her the ideal candidate for the Palos Verdes Peninsula, the place she calls home.
My name is Aura Imbarus. I have lived in Rancho Palos Verdes for 20 years, and I am running to represent you on the PVP USD School Board. I was born and raised in Transylvania, Romania, in a mixed background family (Romanian, Greek, Hungarian and German), exposed to several religions (Greek-Orthodox, Catholic and Lutheran) and several educational institutions, methods and curriculums.
I hold a BA in Foreign Languages, an MA in American and British Studies, and a PhD in World Humanities. In 1997, I was one of 55,000 Green Card recipients out of a pool of 12 million because of the Diversity Visa, a program signed into law by President George Bush, titled The Immigration Act of 1990. My desire to serve Palos Verdes Peninsula on its school board is rooted in two lifelong passions: teaching and serving our teens, the future of this country.
For 22 years, I have taught K-12 and college: West High School, TUSD; Le Conte Middle School, El Camino College, and LA Harbor College. Academic success must be complemented with curriculum that propels our young learners ahead. Programs must assist children dealing with stress. Peer programs help to assuage feelings of isolation. Now, more than ever, mental health and safety are crucial for our community. In order to retain our budget, we must solve financial challenges and preserve our high standards, while attracting and retaining highly qualified educators and creating a warm and welcoming environment for all.
My experiences have taught me that hard work, tenacity, and determination are needed in order to succeed. I am an awarded educator and author of two books. Out of the Transylvania Night: Story of Tyranny, Freedom, Love and Identity(Bettie Youngs Books, 2010) is a memoir detailing my life in Romania during the Communist regime. Conversations with the Past: A Journey Home is a self-help book (Rainbow Ridge Books, August 2020).
I am the founder of See Beyond Media, a company focusing on adolescent challenges in the 21st century, with a launch platform See Beyond Magazine. Besides teaching and writing, I have served as a mentor for Muslim Students Association Club at West High School, LEAP Foundation, and Blue Heron Foundation. I also sat on the Board of Wesley Foundation UCLA.
My beliefs are anchored in fairness, morality, and character, important skills for any round table discussions. My teaching experience of 22 years in the US (K-12 and college) and five years in Romania (K-12 and university) provides a diverse and unique combo of qualities ready to represent you for the next four years in four different areas:
- Curriculum and teacher accountability
- Clean, warm and safe campuses
- Clear and transparent view of the PVP USD budget
- Community involvement.
As an immigrant, who has struggled to rebuild a life in this great country, I understand different perspectives. I am aware of and sensitive to student needs, parent concerns and community desires. I am grateful for the opportunity to serve you. Aura Imbarus, Ph.D. is an energetic educator, who has been serving in public education at the K-12 and college level for 22 years.
Aura has a doctorate (cum laude) in World Humanities from Lucian Blaga University, as well as a Master’s degree in American and British Literature, a BA in Foreign Languages, TESOL, TEFL, CLAD, Reading credentials from UCLA and California State University LA. She is an immigrant of Romanian, Greek descent, who came to this country with 500 dollars in her pocket, a journey explored in two books, Out of the Transylvania Night and Conversations with the Past.
A well-crafted educational system is the backbone of an advanced society. Having local and international exposure to great schooling and unmet challenges in various systems, she will focus sharply on the efficacy of learning. Declining standardized tests scores, financial deficits, unkept and deteriorating facilities must be addressed. A school board must prioritize crucial emotional and physical wellness and a balanced, healthy, socially active student lifestyle, while providing sensitive alternatives for the most vulnerable.
In her free time, she enjoys ballroom dancing, sports, yoga, world travel, and especially exposure to different cultures. „No matter how hard this moment is, seeing beyond it can shed light on the bigger purpose of life, understanding that there are always two sides to every story, and there is always a reason, a lesson, and an outcome which are deeply interwoven. Many times we have to put up with the rain in order to enjoy the latter beauty of the rainbow.”
She was featured on NBC, ABC, CNBC, Good Morning San Diego, Forbes Romania, etc. In 2019, she received President’s Volunteer Service Award signed by President Donald Trump.