I was trying to think about what to write about today. Usually I think about it for a bit either while I’m at work or after I get home, and then I churn something out right before I turn in for the night. Today, I have a little get together with some friends, old and potentially new ones, yay! So I figured I would write something really quickly before I need to leave to go there… because I am not sure how late this trivia thing will run tonight.
We were going to go to the Greek place that we missed out on a few week’s back, but one of my friends works at a local university and has some free card swipes (like a lot of them, actually), for the dining hall. So I got to thinking about how I kind of missed out on that kind of college experience, not that I am sad about it at all, and why.
Simply put, it was most frugal for me to live at home and go to a branch campus. I am incredibly lucky that my parents were down with this plan. I started college early because I was sick of small town high school drama, and I wanted to get college credit for free, so I enrolled through the PSEOP program, which I guess is what they call the program in Ohio that allows high school students to earn dual credits to graduate high school and receive college credits they can transfer wherever. It was a damn sweet deal, and I loved the entire experience.
One of my favorite parts about the branch campus that I attended was the non-traditional students. I learned so much from the older students, because the questions they asked based on their life experiences were so much better than my 17-year old brain could even fathom. I feel like my English classes were more enriched, and even my study group for chemistry was a better match for me, all because of the benefit of experience. When I ended up as a tutor (for calculus, chemistry and English) and working in the writing center, I learned so much from assisting older students. One, they were always determined to pass. Kids my age would stop coming to tutoring sessions or just give up, but not the older students. They were going to pass, and I damn well was going to help them. It was a great sense of achievement.
I guess that really brings me up to this week, when I got to tell one of my students, “Remember when you got a warning you might fail? Any other student might have given up and dropped the class, but you worked hard, were determined to pass, and right now, you’re getting a B in this class. That’s your final grade.” The student high-fived me and told me that I made her feel so proud in herself. “You should be proud,” I told her. “You worked really hard to earn that.”
So while I want to take some of the credit for helping that student along, I suppose I can a bit, just by being there, encouraging her, answering her questions, she made that awesomeness happen for herself. And I guess for me, getting to be a part of that, seeing the look of triumph on her face, is one of the most rewarding things I have had happen as an instructor.
So yeah, this post kind of took a turn, as I wasn’t really sure where I intended to end it. I am fairly happy with this entire train of thought, though. All really nice positive stuff, which is something I have been trying to be all about lately. Feels much better than dwelling on anything that’s broke as shit or beyond my control, that is for certain. Hopefully, I will return tomorrow with some notes on how the evening went. I am expecting very little but some fun times and awesome conversations with some awesome folks I am lucky enough to know.