November 21 – it’s who you know

120/365 – people to thank who have had an impact on me.   This past week, I had guest speakers in my class talking about prospective career choices. Prior to my class arriving, the speakers and I engaged in a conversation regarding what I thought about teaching and of course, I expressed that I felt I had won a lottery in life in that I love waking up and going to work – I love what I do. Teaching has been something that I have done for half my life – a quarter century. Hmmm, now when you put it like that, maybe it’s time for a change but I don’t really feel that my passion has diminished in the least from that very first day in the classroom. I’m a lifer I guess but I am enjoying every minute of my time. I was lucky that I was able to secure employment in Vancouver straight after my Education degree completion but was then made aware of a job in Richmond. Now here’s where there might be some hate on for me as I did not go through nor know about the proper channels/protocol for applying for teaching jobs. I was going to contact the personnel department but realized that the Superintendent of Richmond, Jack R, was my sister’s former principal from grades 8 – 12 and she had won a couple of scholarships awarded by him. With my sister’s permission, I took it upon myself to contact him directly by name-dropping my sister (not knowing that I was bypassing all channels). I ended up with an interview two days later directly with the principal of the school and received the job. Months later, I was made aware that there were many people who were not impressed with how I got the job and I was taken aback as I didn’t realize I did anything wrong and did feel that I got the job based on qualifications and personality. I can’t go back and change what I did and it was with no malicious intent but if not for Jack R, I would not be teaching in the district that I grew up in, still live in and wholeheartedly relate to. I guess it is true that it really is who you know and not what you know and I am so glad that I knew my sister who knew Jack. Sadly, Jack passed away a few years ago and I never did get to thank him in person but I raise my glass in your honour for giving me the best life gift ever!

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