At first glance, the inside of room 721 looks like any other math classroom: posters of famous mathematicians and geometric figures adorn the walls, complicated calculus problems are all over the board and rulers and calculators are on almost every table. But what most people do not realize is that the man behind the madness, Stephen Cochran, is much more than meets the eye. In addition to teaching, Cochran works three other jobs.
Cochran began student teaching in 1991 and became a full-time math teacher in 1993. He was also the school soccer coach but quit after a few years when he and his wife started having kids.
“Soccer has the longest season at the school, and I just didn’t have time after we had kids,” Cochran said.
Since then, Cochran has taught almost every math class the school offers, from Algebra I to Calculus BC AP.
“The only classes I haven’t taught are Math Mastery, Algebra I Enhanced and CAHSEE,” Cochran said. “I know the curriculum,” he added with a laugh.
Outside of teaching, Cochran also owns his own business, ASC Associates, where he works as an accountant and helps people with investments, taxes and insurance.
Along with that, Cochran teaches a Certified Public Accountant (CPA) review class for people who are about to take the test to become a CPA.
“It’s a two-and-a-half day test, so review is very important,” he said.
Cochran also referees local soccer games and works for the state as an instructor for other coaches. His longtime passion for soccer influenced his decision to begin teaching new coaches.
“I love everything I do, and that’s why I do it,” Cochran said. “I love teaching, I love soccer, and I love finance. I’ve started 4 businesses in the last 12 years. I guess you could call me an entrepreneur.”
Even though Cochran works three different jobs, he always finds time to spend with his kids.
“They’re my main focus,” he said. “I always like spending a lot of time with them. I work after school, while they’re doing homework and again late at night, after they’re asleep. That way, I get to spend the most time with them.”
The variety of Cochran’s careers and his entrepreneurship keep him excited about each of his jobs.
“When you’re doing stuff you like to do, you don’t feel busy,” Cochran said. “I’m excited for work every morning because everything I do provides people with great opportunities. I only do what I like doing.”