Where are you from? Where did you study?
I am from Richfield N.C., but I currently live in Gold Hill, N.C. with my wife and family. I received my BA in Elementary Education from Pfeiffer University and I am currently in graduate school at Gardner-Webb, working on my Masters in Educational Leadership.
Have you always wanted to teach?
I originally thought I wanted to be a Highway Patrolman, but after my first semester at Pfeiffer I began working at a summer school youth program and realized that this was the path that God was laying in front of me. I realized that I was blessed with the gift to be able to have a positive influence on the lives of the young people that I work with. As a teacher, role model and coach, I am able to lead by example and I am also able to use real world events to teach life lessons. I feel strongly that my teaching experience, along with my military background, has prepared me to be a leader and a role model for the students at Concord Middle School.
Who were you most influenced by and why?
Looking back, I had a few major influences along the way. First of all the person who had an early and powerful influence on me was Dr. Hazel Frick. As a middle and high school student, I struggled and had little faith in my abilities to succeed in school. Dr. Frick consistently took time out of her day as a teacher to tutor me, to support and to show me that with hard work anything was possible. She always believed in me and she eventually taught me to believe in myself. Later in my college years a strong influence on me was Sherry Hill. She allowed my to volunteer in her classroom, she worked with me, she showed me what true teaching was and honestly, she made me want to be an outstanding teacher just like she was. Last but definitely not least is my first administrator, Jane Crenshaw. She took a chance on me as a new teacher and believed in me from the start. Through her high expectation and her leadership abilities I became the teacher that I am today. With positivity and honesty she set high goals for her staff and students and supported and encouraged us along the way to meet those goals. Her work ethic was like no other and she taught me to be focused and driven. I feel incredibly blessed to have had each one of these individuals placed in my path, because without each of them I would not be the teacher that I am today.
What do you consider your biggest success as a teacher?
My biggest success as a teacher is making an impact on the lives of students that lasts well beyond the sixth grade. When a student comes to you years later and thanks you for the things you helped them do and learn and explains that you helped mold them into the young adult that they are becoming…it just doesn’t get much better than that. I thank God often for what he has blessed me with and I pray that I can continue to make a difference.
What do you like best about Concord Middle?
What I like best about Concord Middle School is the opportunity I have to truly make a difference. Concord Middle School allows me many opportunities to be a leader and serve in leadership roles such as: SLT Co-Chair, Cabarrus County Leadership Cohort, coaching boys and girls basketball, and grade level chair. In addition, I love the students that I teach and the fact that I have the ability to reach and understand those struggling students, because I was that student. I know the power of having someone believe in you and the difference that it can make in your life.
What do you plan on doing over the summer?
This summer I plan to juggle graduate school and my internship while spending as much time as I possibly can with my wife and family. My wife supports me and is always my biggest fan. We love to travel and create memories with our children. Summer is always a time to just enjoying being together.
Who is your favorite superhero?
My favorite superhero is Spiderman. This superhero is my favorite because it was the all time favorite for our son Will. Will died when he was only 7, but the lessons he taught my wife and I are well beyond his years. When I think of Spiderman, I think of Will and all of his amazing qualities. He had such an impact on my life and he definitely taught me unconditional love. Spiderman holds a special place in our family.