How Living in NYC as a Young Adult Made Me a Better Teacher

I posted the following comments on the “Get Schooled” blog, June 21, 2016:

I was offered a scholarship in high school to be a teacher.  I had no intention of being a teacher at that time and turned it down.  I majored in theatre at Wesleyan College in Georgia, worked summer stock in Connecticut, and ended up in New York City for seven years, from age 20 – 27.  I worked at New York University (as well as attended NYU as a student for two years) in the Vice President’s office, where I encountered the names of professors from all over the world.  Going from south Georgia at age 20, and returning to south Georgia from NYC at age 27 made all the difference in the type of teacher I would become.  I had had seven years of experiences in a multicultural environment of people from all over the world so that my perspective was very different than if I had been born in south Georgia, attended university in south Georgia and taught in a south Georgia school until I retired.

That life-altering experience of living in the Village of NYC for seven years, as well as having completed my undergraduate degree there, made me understand that I was born to be a teacher, but a teacher in which I understood myself and others with more depth than I possibly could have had by having lived my whole life in south Georgia.  The thousands of students whom I taught directly, or who were affected indirectly through my educational leadership positions in grades 1 – 12, profited immensely from the expanse of my consciousness brought about primarily through interacting with people from all over the world, and all cultures throughout the world, in one of the largest cities in the world throughout the decade of my young adult years.


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