Today I officially completed my first year as a student at the University of Michigan. Ann Arbor. It was a remarkable learning experience. For the majority of my classes this past year, we would meet once a week for a student led discussion. The idea was that more could be learned from challenging students to think instead of strictly relaying information to them. Ideas which to me, seemed intensely familiar, thanks to the teaching styles and practices of those on the Global Education Staff. I would find myself constantly drawing back on literature, history and, even movies that I observed in Global Ed, and constantly would put it to use in the classroom. As it goes for most cases in this world, we do not truly appreciate what we have until it’s gone. I always enjoyed Global Education throughout my four years in the program, but now I tell people it was my best decision I made in high school.
My junior year of high school, I knew I enjoyed writing, I knew it was easy for me to get good grades, but other than that school and learning were not what I was most worried about. However after sitting in your classroom junior year, my way of thinking has been forever changed. I used to have the mindset of minding my own business, and if I was not affected by something, I would not let it bother me. However that year, I realized how my way of thinking was in no way beneficial. You taught me to question, you taught me to think for myself, and you taught me so much about writing and the English language that I will never forget. You helped me to realize that learning can be intriguing and captivating. I know it's often talked about, that teachers deserve so much more money than they make which is true. However I believe it is because teachers do not make the salary that they deserve, that they can be so powerful and impactful on a young person's life. When you are in a profession because you love it, it is apparent. I notice now, when I am sitting in a lecture, that what separates most of my professors at Michigan from other teachers I have had in the past, is the passion for what he or she is speaking about and the desire to want students to not only learn but also to think, instead of simply showcasing how much he or she (the professor) knows. I can say that all the teachers in the Global Ed. program showcased this passion for their work, and a desire for learning and thinking to be drawn from their students. With that being said, with the most sincerity that can be displayed through an e-mail, I thank you. Not only did you act as teachers but role models who still impact the choices I make on a daily basis. Please never forget how important you are not only to me, but to the many who feel just as I do and have simply forgot to say thank you.