This week our son is starting his second year at a college for young adults with intellectual disabilities. Of the two majors, culinary arts and horticulture, he has chosen to major in horticulture.
Within the last month, the lead instructor in the horticulture program at Joey’s school had to resign when she realized that health problems in both her own parents and her husband’s parents were going to require her to become a fulltime caregiver. Good on her!
Meanwhile, the school launched a search for a new lead horticulture instructor. In the interim, they moved their head groundskeeper and greenhouse keeper of the past 30 years to the job. This 60-ish gentleman has a horticulture degree and all of the appropriate certifications. He also knows every inch of the school’s acreage and says that it will be their lab for study (even pre-exam study) this year.
It appears that the only formal credential he has not previously acquired is experience behind the podium teaching, although it quickly became obvious, when we met him, that he has been informally instructing students and residents at the campus for 30 years now!
As he stood up to show us a Powerpoint presentation of what the students will be learning and accomplishing this year, his eyes shone. The students were all resonating with his talk, too. In fact, we all were. He was throwing out tidbits of information, whetting the appetite for more. I found myself wanting to stay and learn horticulture myself.
I whispered to the college president on my way out, “I think you may have found your permanent instructor!!!”