Thursday, November 20, 2008

I'm So Proud!

My outstanding EMERGING SCHOLAR and I

This beautiful young woman was a student of mine over the past 3 years. She began taking the developmental level English reading/writing with me, then continued with these courses and exited our program of English as a Second Language with me by finishing with a flourish and receiving A's along the way.

She is from West Africa, Benin, to be exact. Her native language is French, and she learned English and still speaks with a beautiful French accent.

She was honored this week with about 20 other students from my college as an emerging scholar. What makes her an emerging scholar is the fact that she has taken 2 or more developmental classes and has distinguished her self by maintaining a 3.5 or better GPA through her community college career.

She took all 7 of our developmental classes, and I know she earned A's in all the classes I taught. She has a work ethic that helps her to meet the expectations of the teacher, all the while trying to be able to support herself through part time work. She started out clerking in a gas station, then moved on to be a clerk at Walgreens. I know her bosses at Walgreens, and they say she is an outstanding employee.

She has a very heavy class load this semester. She is preparing for nursing or pharmacy as her intended career goal. She will be moving on next semester to the university for the more advanced level classes. She is just in her early 20's, so she has definitely had her head on right to pick the priorities that she needs to be a successful student.

The one thing I have noticed about my ESL students, in general, is that they appreciate the opportunity to get an education. Most have immigrated to this country because their parents wanted it for their children, or the students themselves saw education in the U.S. as something that would prepare them for life. Many come from countries where political unrest makes something such as studying at the university impossible to achieve.

I am teaching a group of very gifted ESL students this semester. I showed my former student's picture to them, and told them about EMERGING SCHOLARS. I told them I wanted each one of them to become an emerging scholar in 2 years. They all have the ability! One very outspoken but charming young man said to me, "What do I have to do to be this?" I said, "Get all A's and B's in all of your classes!" He kind of looked shocked, but he certainly has the capability to do it.

If only he resists the temptation that many U.S. born teens and young adults fall into, the idea that college life is play time. I hope they use their time here and during these years to the best advantage.

No comments: