We are the faculty. You may call us teachers, instructors, lecturers, professors, or even something more creative such as the educators, learning leaders, or igniters. Regardless of our title, salary, or position, we have an ongoing mission to educate this generation of students that populate our classes. We all recognize how important our jobs and roles are as educators.

Education is the single greatest gift we can pass on to the next generation, as we are not just impacting their lives, but the lives of generations before and after them. When we impact someone’s current situation through education, we enable them to support and impact their parents, their kids, their siblings, their extended family, their friends, their colleagues, and people in their community.

We “pass the torch” of knowledge, experience, and application to a generation that will continue the cycle to, potentially, everyone in their circle at least to some capacity. Yes, we enable them to impact the next generation, which has exponential benefits, but it is so much greater than just the next generation.

We must thoughtfully consider each assignment to make sure it accomplishes its task. We must meticulously plan each lecture to both teach and engage our students in a way that they will grasp and be able to implement what we are sharing with them. And, we must assess and evaluate their learning to verify what was received and to pinpoint deficiencies, so we can identify what areas need more focus.

The process of education can be strenuous and time-consuming, but it is worthwhile.

I encourage you today, from one faculty member to another, to press on and keep working. The days of grading, advising, lecturing, meeting, counseling, and listening to excuses and reasons always extract the very life out of us, but each semester proves to be another instance where some learn, some grow, some develop, some are positively changed, and if we pay attention, some have their entire lives rerouted to hope and success due to our efforts.

I know this article sounds extremely “sappy and cheesy,” but it is the truth. If it were not for teachers, I would not be teaching today. And, if it is not for us, the next generation would have no one to teach and lead them.

I often use TED Talks as examples in my classes, so I thought I would share one with you here. Whether your prefer Mac or Microsoft, Bill Gates is an advocate for education, and he makes some interesting insights in this video. Here is a speech he gave at TED on Education & Good Teachers.

Yes, Bill Gates can see issues and solutions in the field of education. Yes, he is an advocate for education in our nation. But, no, he does not know everything we do, day in and day out. Yet, his platform does provide attention to our field. So, I thought it was worth listening to see what perspective he has and to understand what is striving to achieve. 

This is all for now. I appreciate your time. I know how valuable it is!

Come back later, and continue reading these articles. We will be looking at various skills we can demonstrate and/or teach to help our students and bring a little sanity to our lives in the process.

See you soon!

–Brent

Brent S. Mayes