Passion is catching. Ask anyone, and they’ll be able to tell you about someone who inspired them- that one teacher that they always looked up to, the one who ignited in them a burning desire to learn. These teachers are the ones who help to shape our futures in education and beyond… but there are also teachers who can extinguish that flame. There are some who could take the most awful class and make it amazing- and those who could turn anything into an hour of boredom.
I’ve been blessed with many inspiring teachers in my academic career: Ms Woodhouse, Mr Maxwell, Mr Powell, Mrs Martin, Mr Nelson- these rare spirits that brought so much wonder to my life. The hours spent in their classrooms have altered my course. At 11, the words you have a remarkable talent for poetry scribbled in cramped red letters in my exercise book influenced the dozens of notebooks I’ve filled since. The voice of my English Language teacher still echo in the back of my mind “You’re extremely capable, Jas, and I’m going to push you to try something new, because you could have a future in this subject”. My favourite teacher is in fact a Cardiff Uni alumni, and her enthusiasm sealed my decision to apply here. Now that I’m well into Spring semester, I’m seeing that that is still the case, and your experience of a module can be hugely influenced by the lecturer. My Sociolinguistics module is not only fascinating, it’s taught with passion and excitement. How can you not enjoy something conveyed with such joy? It definitely beats other (nameless) classes I’ve yawned my way through or avoided entirely.
Today I realised how important it is to surround yourself with like-minded people. Interests and excitements become amplified, bouncing between those who share them, pooling your experience into something bigger. It makes me grateful to have found people with similar interests at uni, and makes me regret not joining any societies. Looking back, it would have been a great way of meeting new people, but what’s not done is not done I guess. It’s so easy to become complacent or unmotivated, and to drag others down with you. It’s important to enjoy yourself- and not just outside of the classroom. It’s becoming more and more apparent to me that the only way to do well at uni is to unlock that old passion for the subject. Maybe Renaissance literature is my definition of mundane, maybe 9am seminars are painful to my heart- but finding that excitement in simply being here that seemed to wear off not long after Freshers will help me get through it and stay awake for the classes I’ve fallen in love with… that, or a double shot coffee from The College House.