My High School Calculus Teacher Deserves The World

My High School Calculus Teacher Deserves The World

Any time we enter the classroom we are greeted by a smiling face belonging to a woman who genuinely cared about her students and the people around her.

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As I readied myself for my senior year of high school, I discovered that my greatest anxiety was a glorious subject called Advanced Placement (AP) Calculus. When I first received my schedule, I trembled at the sight of those words, and highly considered switching classes because I definitely did not want to suffer through nine months of intense math. However, after a few weeks, I realized an inspiring reason to stay in the demanding class: my teacher.

To some people, my decision to stay simply because of the teacher may seem ridiculous, but those same people must not know Mrs. Wester. In the first few weeks of the class, we were collectively overwhelmed and frustrated, as one would expect from a challenging math class.

We often complained, and sometimes, even cried. However, despite our pain, our teacher never lost hope. Any time we entered the classroom we were greeted by a smiling face belonging to a woman who genuinely cared about her students and the people around her.

Whenever someone needs help, Mrs. Wester is always willing to offer any act of service. She motivates my class with Jolly Ranchers, soft peppermints, muffins, and sausage balls. She expresses her ceaseless support for her students by writing inspirational quotes, giving pep-talks, reading Bible verses, and telling funny stories.

Her smile is contagious and her laugh floods the room with joy. If you missed class for any reason, the next time she saw you, she would tell you how happy she is to know you're back and that if you needed anything, she was there to provide.

I am more than grateful to know such a compassionate teacher with an amazing love for her job. Without my calculus teacher, I am not sure how I would have survived my senior year up to this point. When I am annoyed or stressed beyond belief, I know I can come into the classroom and she will help me back to a calmer state of mind. I may leave stressed about the curriculum, but because of her kind and loving heart, I won't leave upset about reality.

My calculus teacher taught me that some situations are inevitable, but the future is brighter. In high school, friendships come and go, and sometimes, you may flunk an assignment or a test. She helped me learn that my future is not defined by a broken relationship or a tragic test grade.

My future is built on my work ethic and my attitude. As long as I am diligent in my work and maintain a positive attitude, my future will be successful. She taught me to never settle, and I can always do more than what I have initially done. I can always practice a little more or finish one more question. Ultimately, she taught me that there is never a point in giving up when people believe in you and your future.

She teaches her students valuable life lessons. She warns us to be cautious of any important decisions we may face, so that we may evaluate both sides of the situation and choose the best solution (pun intended). She reminds us to explore the dating world with marriage as the goal, but never forget to have some fun and laugh a little with whoever you are dating. If you are stressed, it is okay to cry, but do not dwell upon your struggles for a new day is dawning.

Mrs. Wester has influenced me to believe in myself, trust in my future, and have stronger faith in God that He will lead me where I am needed. If I don't remember any of my teachers from kindergarten to all of high school, I pray I always remember "that silly and energetic calculus teacher." She has inspired me, motivated me, and helped me become the person I am today. If you're reading this, Mrs. Wester, thank you for all you have done, even if you didn't know what you were doing, which you usually don't, but no one will blame you.

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To The Friends I Won't Talk To After High School

I sincerely hope, every great quality I saw in you, was imprinted on the world.
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Hey,

So, for the last four years I’ve seen you almost everyday. I’ve learned about your annoying little brother, your dogs and your crazy weekend stories. I’ve seen you rock the awful freshman year fashion, date, attend homecoming, study for AP tests, and get accepted into college.

Thank you for asking me about my day, filling me in on your boy drama and giving me the World History homework. Thank you for complimenting my outfits, laughing at me presenting in class and listening to me complain about my parents. Thank you for sending me your Quizlets and being excited for my accomplishments- every single one of them. I appreciate it all because I know that soon I won’t really see you again. And that makes me sad. I’ll no longer see your face every Monday morning, wave hello to you in the hallways or eat lunch with you ever again. We won't live in the same city and sooner or later you might even forget my name.

We didn’t hang out after school but none the less you impacted me in a huge way. You supported my passions, stood up for me and made me laugh. You gave me advice on life the way you saw it and you didn’t have to but you did. I think maybe in just the smallest way, you influenced me. You made me believe that there’s lots of good people in this world that are nice just because they can be. You were real with me and that's all I can really ask for. We were never in the same friend group or got together on the weekends but you were still a good friend to me. You saw me grow up before your eyes and watched me walk into class late with Starbucks every day. I think people like you don’t get enough credit because I might not talk to you after high school but you are still so important to me. So thanks.

With that said, I truly hope that our paths cross one day in the future. You can tell me about how your brothers doing or how you regret the college you picked. Or maybe one day I’ll see you in the grocery store with a ring on your finger and I’ll be so happy you finally got what you deserved so many guys ago.

And if we ever do cross paths, I sincerely hope you became everything you wanted to be. I hope you traveled to Italy, got your dream job and found the love of your life. I hope you have beautiful children and a fluffy dog named Charlie. I hope you found success in love before wealth and I hope you depended on yourself for happiness before anything else. I hope you visited your mom in college and I hope you hugged your little sister every chance you got. She’s in high school now and you always tell her how that was the time of your life. I sincerely hope, every great quality I saw in you, was imprinted on the world.

And hey, maybe I’ll see you at the reunion and maybe just maybe you’ll remember my face. If so, I’d like to catch up, coffee?

Sincerely,

Me

Cover Image Credit: High school Musical

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Don't Be Afraid of Changing Your College Plan

It really isn't THAT bad...

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I can't claim to have any deep wisdom on life, but I at least have some good experience with a highly turbulent college career. I started as a game design major in a tech college in Rochester, NY, transferred to a college in Texas, and now I'm an English major at CofC.

My college life has been something of a roller coaster.

But I regret none of it. Maybe it would have been easier to stick to the track I was on initially, but I would never have been fully satisfied with it. Now I've finally found my place and, even though it may have taken a lot of shifting around, it was undoubtedly worthwhile.

I don't mean to say that everyone who is slightly dissatisfied with their major should transfer all over the country and change their major(I had to sacrifice the ability to get a minor because of the path I took, so I wouldn't recommend it to most people). I just believe that if you find yourself not liking the classes that are vital to your major or if you can't find a place at your current college, then changing your major or transferring isn't as horrible as you might imagine.

When I started college I was completely confident in what I wanted to do and what my future would look like. I thought it would be ridiculous for someone to stray from their initial path. That idea led to me deciding to transfer later than was smart.

I think everyone should know that having to change your plans for the future, sometimes in dramatic ways, isn't a bad thing. No matter how scary transferring and changing majors can seem, many people have done it before you and many will after, you aren't alone.

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