Have you ever looked back to your past and identified the people who helped make the person you are today? One of those people was my high school marine biology teacher, Vicky Loehr. She was featured in a news segment by my hometown’s local news station as “Teacher of The Week”, although, I’m sure she warrants the title “Teacher of the Century” to many of the students who have sat in her class.
As the report says, Ms. Loehr doesn’t just teach marine biology. She gets her students thinking about their futures and how their present decisions affect their longterm. When I was going through a tough time with my parents divorce, she listened to me each day after school and gave me the inspiration and advice I needed. She recognized my presentation, writing, and people skills and my passion for surfing and ocean life and encouraged me to do something about it. With her sponsorship, I started a surf and ocean preservation club which allowed me and other students to bring in guest speakers, score limited edition goodies from surf brands, get involved with volunteer activities within the surf community, and conduct fundraisers so we could adopt a whale.
This club was just a start of how Ms. Loehr brought goodness into my life. She got me thinking about college and my future career, directed me in applying and interviewing for scholarships and grants, and encouraged me to apply to the University of North Florida. It was she who told me to start learning computer and communications skills for improved work prospects, to read, to write, and to reach out to people to learn and improve the world. Ms. Loehr instilled in me a passion for life and for success that still lives on today, which is one of the primary reasons I coach individuals as a vocation. In that sense, whoever I’ve helped is a direct consequence of Ms. Loehr’s influence in my life.
She always saw the best in her students and encouraged them to nurture the better parts of themselves. She’s one of those people who touches others with good acts and through simply being themselves. Because of her, I hope that I’m one of those people.
Thank you, Ms. Loehr for having been my teacher on the subjects of marine biology and of life.