The secret behind long-term academic success and growth?
It's not enough to aim high; you also need someone to help you aim high. And if you doubt that it can happen, I am evidence that it can ... with the right help! (See below.)
Six Who Made a Difference
Professor of Spanish, Philips Exeter Academy (Exeter, NH)
Without the modest, unsung hero, Prof. Buisán, I might never have graduated high school, if I had even survived adolescence. For the profound thanks that I owe him for saving not just my education but even my life, you can read Zev Singer's interview with me "The teacher who tamed the kid who wouldn't behave" on the occasion of my 2004 National Capital Educator's award.
Professor of the Philosophy of Law, Universidad autonoma de Barcelona
No one has witnessed the gut-wrenching conversion in my life (described here) and been there to walk through it with me (though often as an antagonist) like the brilliant Capella. But his whole life prepared him to expect the unexpected. You can read about his career in abbreviated form or first-hand in the first volume of his remarkable autobiography Sin Ítaca: Memorias 1940-1975. More remarkable still: we are good friends and I love him dearly.
Fr. Eusebi Colomer i Pous SJ
Professor, Facultad de Teología, San Francisco de Borja SJ (San Cugat del Valles, Barcelona, Spain)
Fr. Colomer will always be my model for how the very best theology and the toughest critical thinking can and should be brought together, namely, through an intense and profound love of God who transcends all earthly things but who is incarnated in professors like Colomer who still care about the least, including students like me.
Professor of Classics, Beloit College (Beloit, Wisconsin)
Prof. Wyatt (Beloit College) has had numerous students recall him but all of our encounters with John Wyatt can be summed up as James Wells, a former student, does: "I am a first-generation college graduate, and on my father’s side of the family, the first to earn a high school diploma. My parents divorced when I was 11, and my mother raised five children on an income barely above the poverty threshold—a heroic achievement, but what I thought of as a normal life was not normative in the context of a highly selective private liberal arts college. ... And then I met John Wyatt..."
John Wyatt's illustrious career and inspiration as a teacher was noted by Beloit College's president in Wyatt's obituary. But even it barely scratches the surface of the influence that John Wyatt had on the students fortunate enough to have been able to listen to him ... in awe.
Fr. Leonard Boyle OP
Professor of Medieval Studies (Palaeography), Pontifical Institute of Medieval Studies (Toronto, ON)
Fr. Boyle commanded authority and thus was feared and loved equally. He is remembered because he could humiliate you and actually make you learn the most unreadable texts but only because he loved you... us, his mistake-prone students.
Professor, New Testament, Wycliffe College - Toronto School of Theology (Toronto, ON)
To no one does the epithet "Christian scholar and gentleman" apply more accurately than to Dr. Longenecker. He remains the best example and model of this combination, an example and model to which I have always aspired since I first studied with him. Not that I have gained that goal... but I still press on ... almost half-a-century later.