Thanks for sharing such a great and so, so, so true story about the power of teachers; probably one of the most noble professions of all.
I love this time of year. I have the opportunity to attend several graduation and awards events and the strories I hear, the miracles I witness, and the joy it brings me to say a few words of thanks and praise, is indeed inspiring and a great honor.
And it all boils down to great teachers who inspire students to excel, push themselves to limits they have never known, and give them chances no one else ever did.
Through your generosity, spirit, and sense of the value and contributions this young man could make, you went the extra mile -- as all wonderful teachers do -- and YOU made the difference. You will always be remembered by that young man and his family.
I believe in God and the power of faith. God, or some higher being, makes events "on the Grapevine" happen just to remind us what we do is life-changing and provide an opportunity for people to say thank you.
It's about teachers. I consider it a daily honor to do what I can to make sure teachers can do what they do for the students whose lives they shape, mold, and often transform.
Thanks for being you and thanks for calling PCC your professional home,
From: Carrie A. Starbird
Sent: Sunday, June 03, 2012 5:37 PM
To: Crystal A. Kollross; Robert B. Miller; Brock M. Klein; Matthew T. Jordan
Subject: Why do I teach?
I sent this email to the Math Division today. I thought you would enjoy it too. Happy Reading...
I wanted to share something that happened to me recently that reminded me that, everyday, what we do matters. We have the ability to touch and change lives forever. This is why I teach. I hope you enjoy...
A few weeks ago, my family and I were returning from my aunt and uncle's 50th wedding anniversary celebration near Sacramento. It was about 10pm on Sunday, and we were still north of the Grapevine. We entered a nearly empty Panda Express for a quick dinner before the final leg of the drive. As we were finishing our meal, a young couple entered the restaurant; after a few minutes, the young man walked up to me and asked me if I taught math at PCC. He then said "I don't know if you remember me, but I was in your math class about 5 years ago. I really need to thank you for what you did for me. After our class ended, you wrote a letter for me to a judge. I was facing a 5 year prison sentence and your letter helped him make his decision that I should not got to prison; he let me out on probation instead. And, you see...well, I graduate from USC next week with a double major in English and Political Science, and a minor in Psychology. And, in the fall, I am moving to New York to start law school. So, I just really need to thank you for writing that letter for me."
I am sure glad I took the time to write that letter; I'd hate to think how different his life would be if I hadn't.
As we near the end of the semester and all the craziness that comes along with it, take a moment to remember all the students' lives that you have touched through the years. And, if you feel so inclined, share a story or two with everyone.
Assistant Professor of Mathematics
Pasadena City College