Everyone reading this has been there.
Sometimes you recognize the point in time when your life changes. Those moments are filled with light, the pathway illuminated by the choice that lies ahead. Sometimes those moments are not appreciated for years, when the subtle change that changed everything was brought visible by age and wisdom, and at a time when the true significance could be appreciated.
A fortunate person is one who has multiple passions. I’m guessing that all of us have at least one, and what we identify as our passion contributes to our uniqueness as a human being. Accordingly, when you share the same passion with others, you can find yourself in a magical place, a place where your life is enriched and worth living. And when your passion is someone else, and their passion is you, well, that’s as good as passion can get.
Those that know me, and know of my professional interests, recognize my interest in learning spaces. I’ve spoken and written about the value of spaces in relation to learning on many occasions. And while I don’t have any formal education in this area, we all know what can happen when motivation and interest meets the opportunity afforded by the connections of the Web. Certainly my interest in learning spaces, both physical and digital, and how they support and impact learning, has become a passion for me.
For the past 27 years, I’ve had the great fortune of working in schools, and working with young adults and with great professionals. As a biology teacher for 15 years, I taught over 2000 young people the subject of biology. I’ve had the wondrous opportunity of watching those kids enter a school as a timid and scared 14 year old and leave as a confident young adult at 18. I’ve had the opportunity to be amazed and humbled by the very kids I have worked with, to share in their successes and failures, and to help them celebrate what was good, and help them through what was bad. That is the essence of what it means to be an educator, and it’s just that simple. All of that has been a passion of mine. That will always be a passion of mine.
But a new opportunity has opened up for me, and I’ve decided on a new path.
I have chosen to step away from almost three decades of education to follow something I know I must follow. It is my time to do that, and I’m proud to be announcing that I will be joining a great organization that has offered me a wonderful and unique opportunity. To that end, on July 1, I join Cannon Design and The Third Teacher Plus in Chicago as a Digital Strategist and Designer on the TTT+ team. I’ll also be responsible for developing new projects for Cannon Design’s K-12 practice in Chicago and throughout the Midwest.
As you can expect, I’m humbled, excited, and thrilled by what lies ahead. Being able to work with Christian, Le, Melanie, Teri, Emi, and the entire Cannon Team will be energizing beyond belief. And so the next part of my professional life begins.
Earlier I said that a fortunate person is one who has multiple passions. A truly lucky one is someone who gets to follow them.
To Waubonsie Valley, Downers Grove North and South, and Glenbrook South, to all of the kids and to everyone who helped them learn in those places, thank you. It has been my honor and my privilege to be called your teacher, your colleague and your friend.