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"The Best Part Of This Job......"

"The best part of this job is running into Carlson graduates and see them doing so well.  No politician can ever take that away."  It was a simple Facebook status update I posted last week after enjoying lunch with a Carlson graduate in his office on the campus of Michigan State University.  Little did I know it would turn in to a status that would receive over 30 "likes" on my personal Facebok page and inspire me to write one of my most meaningful posts for The Geekly Reader.

I consider myself very fortunate regarding my job and career.  I have mentioned numerous times how much I love my job and place of employment.  I work with amazing people at Carlson High School.  I loved teaching language arts, public speaking, drama and directing school plays.  I continue to enjoy running the school library, coaching track and field, announcing sporting events and advising the Carlson High School Student Council.  I love working with young adults and preparing them for whatever their future may bring.  I strive to prepare Carlson graduates to be life-long readers and leaders in the community.

Unless you have been living under a rock for the past year I am sure you realize public school teachers have been taking a beating by politicians in Lansing.  I guess we are responsible for all the ills in the state and across the nation.  Sure, many have said, "it's not you, it's the MEA (the Michigan Education Association) that we can't stand."  However the comments still sting, and the budget cuts still lead to lousy working conditions.  It is easy to get depressed working in a public school with all the negativity in the news, but I do my best to look for the positives.  Thankfully, positives are easy to spot whenever I am out in the area.

Running into my former students and athletes always makes my day.  I love seeing so many of them succeeding as adults.  As I mentioned above, I enjoyed lunch with a Carlson graduate that works within the Michigan State Football program.  He took me on a tour of the amazing football facility and introduced me to various members of the Michigan State football staff.  He is respected by so many in the building.  While I saw many amazing sites on the tour, the site that stood out the most was the actual individual providing the tour.  I was so moved, seeing how successful and well respected this particular Carlson graduate is at his place of employment.  Thankfully,  I experience events like this frequently.  Just a week or two ago I was excited to see a new business profile in the News Herald.  The proprietor of the business was a former student and athlete.  He is just one of the current business owners I have had the chance to teach and coach during their high school years.  I know of another former student athlete running a successful textile maintenance company.  All three of these outstanding, successful young men competed on my track and field teams at one time.

I could write for hours about the successful run ins I have had with Carlson alumni.  There are those that are photographers, school principals or on-air radio hosts.  Others that work in the medical field, cheer on college teams while mastering their college coursework or sell millions for large computer corporations.  Many are working hard right now on their college course work as I write this entry; future success stories I'm sure.  So thank you Bradley, Brent, Ryan, Michelle, Melanie, Richie, Staci, Delayna and Nathan.  Seeing each of you (and many many others) doing so well makes my day, and nobody in Lansing can ever take that away from me.


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