I believe that every student who criticizes a teacher should think what it would be like for them to be a teacher themselves. As someone who has just become a teacher at a community college in Danville, Va., I find it is both as rewarding yet also as challenging as many had told me that it would be. The irony is that until graduate school, at Hollins University in my hometown of Roanoke, Va., I was never a particularly solid student. My sister Lale, now a resident of Colorado, always made straight “A”s when I was struggling through high school and later during my first couple of semesters at Virginia Western Community College. I wondered what her experience was like until I started making high marks myself at a much later juncture in my life. I realized it was much more difficult than what I had assumed. The hardest part of teaching is dealing with those proverbial difficult students. The ones who will not come to class, finish or hand-in their work, and yes_ complain. I suppose I did my fair share of complaining countless times myself. And, there were assuredly a handful of teachers who were perhaps not suited to instruct. But, by and large, it is a daunting task which very students sympathize with. I am suprised though that there are students who listen to your message. A few weeks ago, a student who previously told me that his car had broken down before class for a second time actually showed up a half-hour before everyone else with a smile on his face and eager to learn. Ultimately, it is times like that when one realizes that the job is worth it. Of course, at the end of the day, it is an easy thing to completely overlook that.
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