As the swirl of a new semester is about, I must pause for a minute and reflect on what I’ve learned. Next week, I begin my 15 and 1/2 year as a college professor. That’s 31 semesters, plus summers which I took off 1 when I had my first son, so let’s just say 45 semesters of teaching! Oh my word…I’m getting some experience!
As of late, I’ve been teaching too many classes. That’s in part because we are short staffed and in part because I feel such a strong commitment to our students and our Networking program, although my joy is in Programming. I try to do too much and it’s no use trying to change that. But, at the beginning of each semester, I pause and reflect on what I want to do different, how I want to be better, how I want to create an environment where students not only learn the content, but find their own passion.
I have learned that the big picture is what matters and I’m such as small piece of your own puzzle. You see, we can cover content and learn, we can code and accomplish, we can forge and meet deadlines, and all those things are important. But finding your purpose and your passion is going to happen. Maybe it did already, maybe it will click this time, maybe a wheel will turn, maybe you will see your purpose in life and find your passion. And maybe I can help by doing my part, and the only way I know how to do that is for me to just be me. I know this upcoming semester will not be perfect. We might fail, we might flay, we might fall. But we will get up and we will be okay.
And so I begin another semester feeling it couldn’t be better than the last, knowing it must be better than the last, quite filled with emotion because so much has happened and so much as been shared. You see, I have seen all types of learners, different levels of winners, and all kinds of interesting characters. And I know in no other world would I have had the opportunity to watch the growth of so many minds, educational goals come to fruition, and long term determination turn into rewards. I have made many friends, and for that I am most grateful. When we connect, you are my family and that’s why I’m here.
To all my friends, family, and students who will begin another semester or start their college career tomorrow, I encourage you to not quit. Listen to every word and read with an open mind. Find your place and pace, and do well. Know that what you do today makes this journey worth while. Find your passion and move forward. I, with you, will do the same.