By Desiree Perez
By Desiree Perez
The world does not need more teachers. Instead, “We need more good teachers; people that care about the community,” Ola Jackson, associate dean of the Teacher Preparation and Education Program said.
As evident by the accomplishments of the program, Riverside City College is fulfilling that need.
May 17 marked the night of the program’s year end recognition ceremony, titled “Success Through Education.”
Upon arriving at the ceremony, students enthusiastically introduced their families to the instructors that have had such an impact on their lives.
Someday, these students will be in those shoes. These future teachers may one day find themselves shaking the hands of the families of students whose lives they have impacted.
Over 40 students stood before their peers and family to claim their certificates of completion. Many more students received awards of honor and distinction.
As a former student and the associate professor chair of RCC’s behavioral sciences, keynote speaker Jan Schall knows the significance of RCC’s education program better than most. “Students here tonight are not ordinary…(They represent) the scholar: a person of honor and integrity,” Schall said.
While the need for caring and devoted teachers keeps developing, so does the Teacher Preparation and Education Program.
“I am proud to work with such an incredible staff and students. The fruit of your labor is evident in the tremendous growth we’ve had in the past several years,” Jackson said.
“The program’s improving bit by bit, every year,” Kevin Roberts said. Roberts received a number of honors at the ceremony, including the coveted Student of the Year award.
In between congratulatory speeches and student recognitions, the audience enjoyed entertainment provided by Jalel Branden.
By request, Branden sang the Black National Anthem. The lyrics, “Let us march on to victory. Let us march on,” left the aspiring teachers with a note of inspiration, infecting the room with the will to take on the world.
“On behalf of the college, go for it! Serve and I think you’ll find great fulfillment,” Patrick Schwerdtseger, vice president of academic affairs said.
Although this year’s ceremony was larger than last year’s, some felt that it hardly stood up to the great work that the students had accomplished.
“I feel that our students deserve so much more. This is just a small way to show our appreciation for the work they do,” Jackson said. She continued, “When you show recognition for well deserved students, it gives them the courage and enthusiasm to be successful in anything they do.”