Oberon Summer Contest Winners!
Because of the wonderful level of participation & thoughtful posts we received for this contest, we are now offering two prizes. For our first random winner we award an $80 gift certificate and to our second, a $50 gift certificate. Thanks to everyone who participated in this moving and delightful exercise! Read all the posts below!
| ~"Dr. Maria Sirois is one of the instructors in my Positive Psychology Certification program. She shares the science and the practical application of the work with humor, humility and understated passion. Maria inspires me to take risks, step into my authenticity and say "YES" to life. She is the greatest teacher I've ever known. Thanks for this opportunity to share. Anna Gauthier (that's "go-chay")"
~ "My favorite teacher was an English professor at the community college I first attended. I had already been through a couple different majors and felt lost as far as my studies and career. She was not only an excellent teacher in how she explained things and engaged the students in the class in thought-provoking discussion, but in response to one of my research papers on a Shakespeare play, she praised me on my writing and nominated me for a local writing contest. I did not win, but she believed in me and related to me in such a down-to-earth way. She helped me realize my passions and I graduated with a major in English and a minor in Psychology. Sometimes you just need someone to believe in you."
~ "If you think you can, or you think you can't, you're right" It's on the little plaque in my office, that all students got from Mrs. Snyder's 5th grade class."
~ "My favorite teacher was my high school librarian, a woman named Ms. Petersen. She made our school library into not only a place of learning, but also a place of safety. I spent all my lunch periods and study halls there; it was the only place in the entire school where I knew I wouldn't be called names or gossiped about or pushed down the stairs, and I know I'm not the only student who found a safe haven there. She made an enormous difference in my life, and she inspired me to pursue a Master's Degree in Library Science. I want to create the same kind of safe space in my own community because of her example."
~ "Dwight D MCMahon, my 8th grade history teacher at Orville Wright grade school in Dayton, Ohio. He changed my life. He not only taught history, but taught us to be good citizens. You start with your family, your neighborhood, your church, your community, your city and state. Then your country and the world. Take care of others. Be honest and do the right thing. Set a good example to your friends and those who see you and those who don't. He was wonderful. Many many years later, when I became a Mom, I took my 5 year old son to meet him. He was still a teacher - and now my son, at 43 talks about that memorable day when he met my friend, Mr McMahon. We learned history - but oh so much more. He is a treasured memory and so loved by many. "
~ "When I was in the 4th grade, we moved to a new town and a new school. It was my 4th elementary school, and I was used to having a hard time making friends by then because my dad (a Marine) was transferred so often that I was always the new kid in school. But this new school had Mrs. Pohnor, a teacher who inspired me and changed my life. I was quiet, reserved, and shy. I was used to blending in and not drawing attention to myself. But Mrs. Pohnor noticed me, and she spent the next couple of years (she worked in the media center, and music, and other special classes) teaching me mythology, science and wave mechanics, how to collect a spider's web on a piece of construction paper, how to see the contribution of math and physics to the design of a spinning seed pod, how to dissect a fish, and many other things. She called on me to take on leadership roles when I would rather have stood in the background. And when I neared the end of my time there, one day she asked me to meet her in the parking lot after school. When I found her standing by her car, she pulled out an enormous box, full of books -- an entire set of the Harvard Classics! It was a gift for me, she said, as she had two sets, and she thought that I, out of all her students, had a mind curious enough to really make use of those books. To me, they were a treasure, but in the end it was her belief in me that made the real difference in my life. For an unanchored military brat who never felt at home anywhere, she offered inspiration, direction, and a home in literature. I don't know where she is today, or even if she is still alive, but I hope she knew how much of an impact she made on my life."
~ "Your son has Autism". "Oh god what do we do. How can he live?" Mrs. Herschbein for k-1. He's in college now. "
~ "My mother taught me to read, to take care of others and to give myself as many second chances as I might need to find my way. She was the best teacher anyone ever had. If she had not graduated from high school as an orphan in the Great Depression, she would have been a qualified teacher or nursing teacher and more people than just her daughter would have been touched by her greatness."
~ "Even though I am a retired teacher, I am a life long learner. I have taken several poetry writing classes from Andrea Hollander. Andrea is a brilliant and published poet, but as she will tell you, that doesn't pay the bills. So she teaches. The respect she shows to her adult students while imparting organized and skillful lessons in how to write good poetry succeeds in making each participant feel worthy and full of potential. She begins each lesson with quotes from three poets about the nature of poetry in whatever class she is teaching. She gives insightful and instructional feedback to each adult student and inspires students to revise and revise until their poems are finished. I come away from her classes feeling hypnotized, as if I've been transported to another dimension. She has taught me that each poem leads to a new discovery for the poet. She has taught me the truth."
~ "My life went an extraordinary change when my teacher Sr. Clare realized my hunger for history and literature. She made the time and took me aside and often put her own personal favourite books in my hands and then we would leisurely discuss the time period and the qualities of the literature. Sr. Clare once disclosed to me that she grew up in one of the poorest of poor mining communities in the Kentucky coal area. She'd taught herself to read and feed her hunger for books and history and decided to share that voracious need to learn with others. I went on, with her inspiration and faith to become a writer and an investigator of history and share my love, kindled by her bright spark, with others."
~ "Her name was Senorita Cancelarich and she was my high school Spanish teacher. She had a zest and love for teaching that showed in everything she did. She would get so excited about a topic that her enthusiasm was contagious and you just had to love it to. I remember we had an after school Spanish club, and it wasn't unusual for her to rent a van and take us to New York City where we would have wonderful authentic Spanish dinners. She would be behind the wheel of this van, and on the way to and back from the restaurants she would teach us songs that I remember to this day. One of the students in our class went on to teach Spanish and move to Spain. Unfortunately, she is no longer with us, and I was devastated to hear of her death. She died of asbestos poisoning caused by handling her fathers clothes, dusty from work in the asbestos mines. Maria Cancelarich, you are truly missed and fondly remembered."
~ "My favorite teacher, Dana Eversole, was an inspiration to me for by her everyday enthusiasm in class. She encouraged my fellow pupils and me to not settle for mediocrity. I learned the power of giving back to the community as well as finding interest in everyday life. Her zest for life and teaching prompted me to trust my own work and find meaning in the seemingly mundane. I left her class as a better person, with passions and creativity I had not before experienced. To this day, 15 years later, I continue to volunteer and work in the community because she touched my heart so deeply that year. "
~ "It of course is Eileen Hill. She was my metalsmithing professor at Mission College. Not only did she encourage me to become a teacher, but was such a shining example to emulate. Creative, straight forward, supportive, knowledge that felt like an ocean and generous with her spirit. Sadly a few years after I had become a teacher I learned of her passing from cancer. When I finally got a chance to teach within my art medium, I put a dedication to her on the front covers of our classroom readers. She left the world a better place from being a teacher and mentor."
~ "My favorite teacher is the GT coordinator at our elementary school. She makes my boys feel included and important, she listens and encourages them. She makes my spectrum sensory sensitive boy shine and excel."
~ "When I was in grade school, I was a troubled youngster due to issues at home with my parents drinking. I used to fight all the time. Well, in 6th grade it was no different and I was just starting out fighting! Now, not all fights did I start......We lived in the Chicago area. One day was a very Bad day and I don't recall what went wrong but it was BAD! And the teacher wanted me outta her classroom. I felt as if no one wanted me, not in school and certainly not at home. Until Mrs. Smith, not one of my teachers, took me under her wing and wanted me in her class!! Things at that school changed drastically for me, and the fighting literally stopped all due to Mrs. Smith and her belief in me. I am now 56 years old and have never forgotten this woman!"
"Out, out, brief candle," were the first words she ever spoke to us as she turned off the lights in our classroom to get our attention. My high school English lit teacher, Mrs. Addie Hagans, made a huge difference in my life. She taught her students far more than poetry and prose and what Shakespeare meant when he wrote the sonnets. She taught us that respect for each other regardless of race or religion was the main component of a well-lived life. I have kept in contact with Mrs. Hagans for 37 years, and she is like a family member to me."
~ "Mrs. Gillespie. I actually didn't like her. She was an older, strict, English teacher I had my junior year of high school. But she was the only one that noticed that something was wrong and asked me if I was okay. My dad had been in a near fatal car accident, and I was very upset and shook up. It meant a lot to me that she noticed. "
~ "My favorite teacher was a lovely lady named Mrs. Fuller. She taught first grade and instilled in me a love for learning that would become the guiding force in my life. She was smart, kind, and always had an encouraging word. Now, almost 50 years later, I am graduating with my Ph.D. Thanks, Mrs. Fuller, I couldn’t have done it without you!"
~ "My favorite teacher is my high school art teacher. Her name is Michele Altenderfer but I call her "Mickey". She nurtured the creative and artistic side of me when my family saw art as silly and frivolous. Not only did she nurture my artistic self, she also put me on my spiritual path as well. For that, I will be eternally grateful. Mickey has shaped me into the woman that I am today - determined, daring, beautiful, compassionate, artistic and loving. I am blessed and honored to have her in my life. A million thanks to my "second mom," Mickey!!!"
~ "As an art major in college, design ideas were always difficult. I had a jewelry teacher who taught us how to develop a starting point. I have passed the process along to students over the years. So this one teacher has helped many more students than he personally taught."
~ "I was home schooled, so for many of my subjects my mother was my teacher. As I got older and did some teaching of my own I appreciated much more her hard work in preparing lessons for me and my siblings each day. Her dedication to giving us a good education has had a strong influence on my own life. Without her teaching I would not have developed such a passion for literature that has led me on my current career as an editor."
~ "My favorite teacher is Mrs. Anita Parks, in Oklahoma City. She taught me, that even at the ripe "old" age of 40, I could be inspired to learn, and actually ENJOY school! Anita Parks is the only true mentor I have ever had in my life, and I thank her for her dedication to teaching and inspiring students of EVERY age. BEST. TEACHER. EVER!!!"
~ "I am a single mom who decided to go back to school in my 40's. I was scared going to back to school but one of my professors Mr. Gianni made me feel at ease and actually became a mentor to me. I can contact him at any time whenever I'm having trouble in other classes and he tutors me without question."
~ "My 8th grade science teacher, Mr. John Tyler, was and still is simply awesome! He inspired his students to be more than just pupils in his class, but teachers to others as well. Science class was a journey filled with his instruction as well as the encouragement to learn from one another, long before this was the popular trend in education. Yes, I am talking about the 1970s. He took us on field trips into the surrounding woods, filled his classroom with the most fascinating artifacts from his travels, had pop culture icons and ephemera adorning the classroom walls, partnered with other teachers for cross curriculum learning experiences, took us to see a Broadway play ( Jesus Christ Superstar ) and created an after school rocket club. The last of which was a totally hands on activity where we built the launch platform, constructed the rockets and tracking/recovery equipment, and made sure everyone shared equally in the glory at the launches. As if this was not enough, he took some of us to Star Trek Conventions, an interest we both shared. Some 42 years later, my friends and I still speak fondly of our experiences and inspiration in his classroom. My greatest honors are having the opportunity to speak at his retirement dinner and that I now call him friend. He is a teacher and inspiration,in every sense of the word. You see, because of Mr. John Tyler, I became a teacher too. "
~ "My favorite teacher is Dr. James Peddie, DVM. He was one of my instructors in college. He taught me the basics of veterinary medicine for exotic animals while I was in the Exotic Animal Training and Management Program at Moorpark College. Everything I learned in his class has supported my 33 year career as a Zookeeper and now Zoo Curator. The most important things I learned in his class were restraint and handling skills, safety, not to take myself too seriously, and how to spell "diarrhea". (He was right, I've had to use that word a lot). "
~ "My favorite teacher was the orchestra conductor for the class I took from 7th to 12th grades. He taught us music, but also about life as an example of high moral values, compassion, intelligence, creativity, and humor. He went on to become a principal which was a loss to aspiring musicians, but a benefit to the school as a whole."
~ "I had this writing teacher in college who taught a class called Legacies of the Sixties. Having come from a sheltered, small town, the topics we discussed seemed incredibly taboo to me. This teacher caught on to that and helped me see different angles of the world. His class made me a more kind, understanding, open human being. He also helped me grow in my writing. Being able to express myself more clearly on topics has allowed me to succeed in so many ways. It was true growth experience!"
~ "My favorite teacher was my English teacher/principal in high school. He taught me to try new books and I learned to love classic literature. He also taught me English grammar and typing so well that I got a perfect ACT English score without prep and still use Grammar and Typing skills today. Best teacher ever!"
~ "My favorite teacher was a wonderful kind and caring person. Her name was Sister Jameselle and she taught me many classes over the years in high school. She was an avid sports fan and many days she would be out on the softball field pitching and batting and racing from base to base with her habit flying in the breeze. She was quick to laugh and encourage you and just as quick to tell you to "get with the program"! She embraced all the classes she taught and made them such a wonderful learning experience. You always knew she had your back....and as a high school student that was very important!"
~ "My favorite teacher was in college. He was seen as one of the mean, harsh, difficult instructors in the school, and was often disliked because of it. It's true that he was tough on everyone, myself included, but he was the sort of teacher that would tell you the truth to make you work harder and strive to achieve more. He made me work for it but saw something in me, to the point that he told people I would be one of the few to make it in my field. I tracked for him for a while and we kept in touch until he passed away. No one made us work harder but no one taught me more as a result. "
~ "My favorite teacher was Mrs. Celeste Brinkman. She was a great teacher because she made learning fun. She kept the lessons interesting and challenging. She also maintained order when the kids that didn't care to work by challenging them to get involved. Little did they realize that she was accomplishing the goal to have them succeed. Each student felt important and proud of our success!"
~ "My favorite teacher was my high school English teacher, Zoe Weber. She opened up my world to reading and writing by taking the time to find out what I was interested in, not by telling me to choose what was on a reading list. Then she showed me how to brainstorm when writing and how to actually enjoy the process of writing drafts and editing until I wrote the final one that I was happy with."
~ "My English teacher in eleventh grade was so young and pretty that students mistook her for a peer. I witnessed one such mistake go embarrassingly for a lad in my class. Miss--Missus?--Nelson handled the flirtation by breezing into her classroom with her students and cheerfully introducing herself. She did not draw attention to the boy, but she saw me grinning and her eyes sparkled. We were friends, if you will, from that point. Her fresh idea for the dreaded Introduce-Yourself assignment let me use my skills in writing *and* in art, and thenceforth, she regularly asked to see my work. She was so ecstatic about a drawing I made on her computer, in MS Paint, that she printed it and hung it on a wall in the classroom. She commented encouragingly on my fashion sense, tried to nurture budding friendships, but challenged us brilliantly in her subject. Her treatment of other students was equally positive, engaging, and mature. I wish I could tell her she was a bright spot in my high school years."
~ "My favorite teacher was not one at school, but at home. My mom. She has been gone now for nine years, after passing away from cancer, but her spirit will be with me forever. She taught me to face life with dignity and grace, even in the face of seemingly insurmountable obstacles. She taught me to love life and those around me with my whole heart and soul. I am passing her lessons and love on to my children. In this way, she will live forever in all who pass through my family's lives. A great teacher indeed! Love you mom!"
~ "My favorite teacher was my third grade teacher, her name was Mrs. Gibson and she was the grumpiest teacher I ever had. She was strict even for 3rd grade, but she taught me things I use even in college. She was the first and last teacher to give me a detention (for not listening to directions), but also the first and last teacher I truly grew to like and respect to this day. I remembered she said her favorite food was a cannoli and my mom helped me make some for teacher's day. I knew most of the kids in our class didn't like her, but for some reason she grew on me (like pesky spore and grew into a beautiful mushroom) . The cannolis made her cry and she hugged me; I didn't understand why at first, but as I got older I think I do: someone listened to her and heard. And it meant something to her. I learned the gift of listening that year, and have had it ever since, it is why I strive to share my gift with people that need it most. Listening is one of the things i do best; it's simple, but sometimes when there are no words simplicity speaks the loudest."
~ "The teacher I'm thinking of taught me to take risks and to trust my instincts. She also stressed that failing is part of achieving, even though at the time you may not believe it is so. She made a difference in how I perceive things and I've become someone who is not afraid to think out of the box because I don't put myself in one."
~ "Dr. Dambeck is kind, patient, supportive, encouraging and stimulating. He helps me answer questions I had not even thought of. He is up to date on the information he is teaching and explains the "whys" behind the questions, the "hows" of how the questions is investigated and the "whats" of the meaning of the information and it's application to broader thoughts."
~ "This might not be what you had in mind. I didn't have a favorite teacher in elementary school - I did have a teacher I hated and ended up having her for grades 1, 2, and 3! She fit the stereotype of the evil witch from my favorite fairy tales. She really made a difference because I then had a role model of what NOT to be like. Finally, in college I found the teacher who was the diametric opposite of my grade-school teacher. She was cheerful and kind. She took time for each student and her door was always open. I learned much more easily because of having a teacher that would take the time to help me with things I didn't understand."
~ "Mrs Swailes was my 4th and 5th grade teacher. She helped me realize that life is what you decide it to be. Doesn't sound so revolutionary as an adult , but it was profound as a kid in school! And stickers! She used scratch and sniff stickers as rewards. "
~ "My favorite teacher is the formidable, 4'10" tall, Prof. Victoria Dinopol. She was a fiery little woman, whom I first encountered in my Freshman year of high school. At that time, she was the acting Principal of the school, and she was always on the alert, always strict, always observant, and definitely someone you do not want to get into trouble with. She was also our English professor, and I distinctly remember our dreaded creative writing assignments with her. One time, I braved a creative fictional story, with the underlying message of the voice of the youth being the voice of society. I knew it was a risk given her annoyance of youth entitlement, but I submitted it anyway. A week later, we got our papers back. And despite the multitude of red-colored edits, my eyes were drawn to her comments: "You have a heart and a talent within you that the world is waiting to hear. Keep on writing!" She may not know it, but Prof. Dinopol had just opened the gates to my journey in writing."
~ "My favorite teacher would have been Miss Jones. She was my Arts teacher through High School. She was one of those people who pushed creativity in anything you wanted to do. Following the syllabus was one thing but if it stopped you from doing something different then she would bend the rules slightly as to allow you to be as creative as possible. This line of thought helped me to think outside the box in life, which has been very helpful in a lot of day to day tasks in life."
~ "My favorite teacher is named Julie Gebhardt. As an overweight child, I was stuck in the mentality of not being "good" at anything in PE and always felt lousy about myself. She pulled me aside one day and told me I was the only one in charge of making my health better and she believed in me. Years later, I've now ran 4 marathons, 1 ultra marathon, and teach my 6th grade students the same message. Talk about making a difference!"
~ "Miss Riggs, my fourth grade teacher was my favorite. She was single and a softball champion. She had a farm that she ran with her friend. She let all of us know that our choices were up to us, we could do whatever we wanted to if we worked hard. She had me reading The Iliad, The Last of the Mohicans, and Jane Austen. My world changed after that."
~ "My favorite teacher was Miss Fewings. She was my first grade teacher. Miss Fewings was the only teacher that I felt had made an impact on my early education. Everyone in the class adored her as she made learning fun. She showed diligent and care in in our education and success to progress in our early learning. In comparison to other teachers I had, I felt that Miss Fewings had set the bar. I felt She paved my way to higher education and gave me motivation to succeed. "
~ "My favorite teacher was the one I had in 5th and 6th grade. She taught me how to expand my love of literature into a love of writing. For me this was important because, it provided me a way to open up to people more. Now I'm constantly writing, whether in my journal or on my iPad mini!"
~ "As a recent retiree, I look back on life and realize how Ms. Wilder helped me become a success through her example of dedication to those entrusted to her care, passion for her interests, and appreciation for the uniqueness of all people. She may have taught High School English by trade, but she taught "life" by her example! "
~ "I grew up in a coal-mining town in western Pennsylvania. In third grade, we got new geography textbooks. I opened mine to a picture of a fjord in Norway. Enchanted, I said to Mrs. Beckwith, "Someday, I am going there." She replied, "I hope you do." This was in a school where some children had never been more than 10 miles from home. She could have squashed me like a bug, but she let me hope. 30 years later, in Norway, I realized how important she had been in teaching me to dream. "
~ "My favorite teacher was my sophomore Trigonometry teacher. She is an amazing teacher and even more amazing person. As a teacher she always went above and beyond to help her students. She would stay late after school and even come in on her days off to help students both with their math related homework, other subject homework, and even help with personal problems in her students lives. On her off time in the summers she travels abroad to places like Bangladesh, India, other poverty stricken countries to teach children and adults English and basic math. She has been an inspiration to me and others to do everything we can to help one another."
~ "My favorite teacher has always been my mother. You see she was a teacher and taught bilingual special needs children from K to 4 for 26 years and bow she's tutoring children. She's an inspiration and loves to teach however it was never what she wanted to really do but she Least put her heart and soul into her teachings for children to learn while having fun that's why she has made a difference in so many lives that one of the first children she taught invited her to his wedding because to him she inspired him to be a better person and she has seen the child grow up and is tutoring him. I think my mom is the best teacher even though I have had many amazing teachers in schools I still think my mom was the best of them all."
~ "I thought about the favorite teachers whom I've had, and quickly realized that it was impossible to single one out. The thing is, they each made a difference in their own special way, inasmuch as a gem with a perfect symmetry of facets is crafted out of raw mineral through a process of many, many cuts. What they all had in common, however, was their ability and patience to nurture a growing, questioning mind. Anyone in a position of authority can easily crush the restless, questioning spirit of a young person, but the talent to help one bloom is often far too underrated. It isn't about teaching book knowledge, which is just stuff people learn because they have to in school and throw away after exams, but rather the things that define the person we become, like being courageous, having humility, showing compassion and standing up for each other. The best teachers I had were not the ones who taught us how to get the best grades (because I was indifferent anyway when it came to grades), but the ones who: showed me new ways of thinking and looking at things, taught me to look past my limitations when they saw the potential that I couldn't see for myself, gave me wings and told me to fly, and when I lacked the confidence, they pushed me off the cliff anyway so that I *had* to soar. We carry a part of them with us always, and that is the difference they made."
~ "Rusty Wilson was my theater teacher in high school. He shot from the hip and held back no punches. Thoughtless, mindless acting didn't fly with him and he didn't hesitate to throw erasers at me when he could see I hadn't put in the work. But man oh man, seeing tears in his eyes when I finished my senior performance of the one-woman play "The Belle of Amherst" was all the reward I needed. He taught me to work my tail off and never settle for half-hearted living. Rusty, on the off chance you read this, thank you."
~ "My favorite teacher was my High School English teacher, Mrs. Williams. What I remember the most about her was how engaged with the class she was. Every day you felt how much she cared about us as individuals. She had very good boundaries with her personal life , and yet was very open with her thoughts and enjoyment with the world around her. As a student I often lumped my teachers in the category of “people I can’t relate to” – focused only on one aspect of my education – she did not fit into that category. Even when she had bad days, she was good at communicating her expectations of us so that we felt comfortable abiding by them, and somehow that communication made her even more relatable. Mrs. Williams was the kind of individual the you could not compare to any other. Wholly unique, honest, and true to herself, she actively inspired us to be as well. Today she is the principal of a high school and I paid her a visit one day and she said come on let's go bust some people smoking in the restrooms. lol! She still inspires me and is one of the most remarkable individuals I know. Love this lady!"
~ "My mother and grandmother were my favorite teachers. They gave me the benefit of their life long journey of knowledge, expertise and more so their endless compassion and love. Their lessons passed from one generation to the next are what I value and turn to every day of my life. They taught me to embrace "learning" and have an open mind and heart. They were never certified to teach, but they gave me an educational gift beyond any I ever received in a school setting."
~ "My high school biology teacher Mr Fry taught me to look at nature different. Taught me to take the time to see all of the intricacies of every thing on this earth. Thank you!"
~ "My geometry teacher in college was teaching us proofs, and as a requirement, we all had to meet with him individually. They were so frustrating that I broke into tears, but his patience and understanding allowed me to think through the problem and coming to the correct answer ended up feeling so good!"
~ "When I think of someone who made a difference in my life, I picture my college literature professor. She was young but held us to a high standard. In one semester, she taught me more about myself than anyone had my whole life. I had my daughter at 19 (she was 3 by this time) and I was having a hard time getting the world in perspective. A few years prior, when I was pregnant, I had purchased a very old copy of 'The Scarlet Letter' and somehow I felt this book represented my life and the way the world viewed me. We covered the book in the class and i wrote a paper on its significance to me. At the end of the semester I presented my copy to my professor. Through her guidance, I had no need for it as I no longer envisioned myself that way. Years later she attended my graduation and made me cry with a thumbs up and holding up a very old copy of 'The Scarlet Letter'."
~ "My favorite teacher was my middle and high school biology and genetics teacher. She was a very visual teacher and drew on the board as much as she had us draw out concepts and animate in powerpoint. I drew animals on the corner of the board before class and she always loved keeping them up there until the next day. She helped me get my first internship at NIH at the end of high school and I think I really owe a lot of my success as a scientist and engineer to her."