The Smoke Signal

Teachers Then vs Now

Malia Taylor, Journalist

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Teachers were once students before they entered the workforce of teaching. Being a teacher isn’t always easy work, but after sitting down with a few of our teachers here at Ripon High school we learn a little more about their life in high school and what inspired them to do what they do today. 

Mrs. Ulrich in her high school yearbook.

Our librarian Mrs. Ulrich was a very involved and social student during her days in high school.

“I managed the football team, I did flag core, I was apart of the student council, and believe it or not I also ran track,” Ulrich said.

We’ve heard “get involved” a thousand times. May it be from our parents, our teachers, and even our friends. But why is it so important?

“Being super involved may be overwhelming at times, but in the end it definitely made high school more enjoyable,” Ulrich said.

We also had very talented athletes such as Math teacher Justin Graham. Graham carried on his love for basketball through coaching our boys after playing all four years of ball in high school.

“As far as being involved, I did a lot of sports. I played basketball for four years, football for three years, and track for one year. I wasn’t active in many clubs, although I wish I was but sports took up a lot of my time, my advice to students is to just be you. It doesn’t matter what other people say, as long as you’re true to yourself everything will be fine,” Graham said.  

Graham isn’t the only teacher carrying out their love for their involvements in high school. Celeste Morino also decided to be involved in FFA as a teacher after being apart of it during her high school career.

“I was a huge part of FFA, I also joined softball, and even tried out French club. I didn’t have a lot of free time, but when I did I mainly worked on my FFA projects like raising pigs,  and dairy cattle,” Morino said.

FFA has been a huge part of Morino’s life ever since she was young.

“Being apart of the FFA community and helping judge contests made me realize it was really important to teach kids about the agriculture industry, and I wanted to share my passion and love for the program with my students,” Morino said.

Apart from teachers, we have a ton of staff members who keep Ripon High school running every day. Ranae Gonzalez is a Special ed Paraprofessional here at Ripon High. When asked what inspired her to do what she does today, Gonzalez states…

“I stayed home with my kids for seven years. I loved working with and being around kids. I was always class mom for my children’s classes so I knew this was what I wanted to do.”

We all start from somewhere. Doing the things you love now, may inspire you for your future.

As Mr. Graham said, “

As long as you’re true to yourself, you’ll be fine.”

— Mr. Graham

 

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