major part of my reinvention and seek a new career at 61, I believe it is
important you understand all sides of this journey. So we begin with what I leave behind….
Teaching was never part of the plan. In fact, the original plan was to take
Barbara Walter’s job at The Today Show,
but I don’t think she was ever worried.
However I have learned from experience to never say never. While working as our private school’s
communication director (in order to provide private education for three
children), I suddenly found myself starting a high school newspaper.
With seven eager students, and one old PC computer, we began a program
which would blossom into something pretty incredible. After a contest to name the publication, it
became The Revelation, four black and
white, in-house copied pages. That first
staff lit a fire in side of me. I asked
them to go interview at least three students for one of the articles…they interviewed
67! The first Editor-in-Chief would be
the first one to write professionally and major in journalism. Sharing my passion of journalism with these
kids was the most fun I had experienced at any job.
The Revelation is
now a 32-page news magazine, slick, four-color. I could write a book of the
experiences we lived, as high school students interviewed Presidential candidates,
celebrities, entertainers, authors, and told major news stories in a high school
publication. The local newspaper city
columnist wrote about us, because he ran into these young reporters all over
town. It would also blossom into a
broadcast news team. They competed
against college journalists to place in the Lone Star Awards, judged by The
Houston Press Club. Consistently for
twelve years, they brought home Gold Key National Awards from Quill &
Scroll/The American Newspaper Editor’s Association. I learned when you inspire young people to
climb tall mountains, the majority will reach the top…and keep going.
communications from newspaper reporting to public relations and marketing. Some have told me the high school experience
actually prepared them for thriving business careers. Many led their college newspapers. In the past four years, the broadcast team
has begun to have the same success.
private education experience for their own children, would leave after those children graduated. But, I remained. It was difficult to let go of something I had
been a part of from the foundation up… and to let go of the students. Working with teens will keep one young and
taken our school in a new direction. We
had the same superintendent for over thirty years…he and his wife loved the
journalism department. Even when we
ruffled feathers with an uncomfortable editorial or two…even when we reported
stories many wanted removed…even when a retraction had to be printed…they stood
by the publication and all the lessons learned.
They shared the vision to see young people leave our school with an
understanding of the world around us, with a desire to question and know more,
and with a passion to tell truth. They
knew iron sharpens iron. Alan, I cannot thank you enough.
Here we go at 61…hanging up the NEED EMPLOYMENT
sign. I must replace my salary and dust
off the resume! I will miss my students
so much…I will miss watching them surprise everyone with accomplishments…I will
miss their dances and music and joy…and I will miss the glory days of The Revelation and KSAC. I believe teaching was just for that place,
those students, at that time. My
communications career has been diverse and that is where I will concentrate my
sides of this new journey…I truly hope I can help inspire and encourage any of
you also beginning again later in life.
contract, this quote appeared on Glenda’s Blog, SO WHAT TO TWENTY:
direction of your dreams. Live the life
you’ve imagined. – Henry David Thoreau