I have decided to forego a job in the computer industry and instead teach. There are two reasons for this decison. One is that as a teacher, I get all holidays and summers off. The other is that the only way I can change the many things I hate about eastern Kentucky is to take hold of the education process. Instilling a love for education in kids is tough. I read one study that said that kids are only influenced somewhere around 12% by what they are taught in school. There’s no way I’d bet on a horse race with those kinds of odds, but I think there are enough kids living in eastern Kentucky right now that have the potential to do great things. My job as a teacher will be to help them find opportunities that they may have otherwised missed.
I guess all my years of studying computers won’t go totally to waste since that’s what I’m going to try to teach. As far as ushering my students into the 21st century, I couldn’t have picked a better subject. There is almost no job or skill these days that doesn’t require some computer knowledge. I hope my students become so proficient with technology that there is no way that companies will send jobs to India. I’m sick of hearing about the superiority of India: Educated eastern-Kentuckians will do just fine!
The obvious response to my mission is that thousands of teachers started with the same vision yet it seems that none have managed to do very much about it. This is true. To put this as arrogantly as possible, I haven’t tried yet. If I weren’t so bull-headed, I wouldn’t have made it this far. If I devote my life to the cause of education, I believe that things will change. I may not live to see it, but I can sow seeds that will blossom long after I’ve gone. No matter what happens, at least I can say I tried.