Adviser Update Summer 2016 - Page 22

This change literally meant giving up a trip to Los Angeles this spring. I tried to do it and simply couldn’t push it in class any more. What we will do is something that all of us can do: we will take a bus trip into Seattle using the money that would have paid for my trip to the Spring JEA convention. A day pass to all the attractions in our great city for students who would never have the chance to go to the top of the Space Needle, visit the EMP to see the new Star Trek exhibition (I cannot wait), or ride the harbor ferry around to see the city from a different perspective. We can pay for that. Everyone is going. They wanted a sleep over in the school, but Pepe and I decided that was a bit too much. A 57-yearold adviser with an artificial hip sleeping on the floor of the classroom is just not going to happen. A fierce advocate for students means that I will make choices that work for my program and my kids. I have to decide where to spend my time and effort, and where to leave. There are some people that just will not get it and will never get it. If you are like me and feel you aren’t able to climb to the top of Mount Scholastic Journalism with the four or five revered faces carved in stone, that is fine. Stop trying to get there. It is such a relief when you realize that you don’t have to keep pushing, dragging, pulling and complaining to get there. Come, fellow adviser, and sit with me in my car, and look at Mount Scholastic Journalism in all its glory enjoying the fabulous air conditioning and a cup of hazelnut-flavored coffee. The first priority in my program is that we will become a family. Our main goal is to fill in the gaps that exist for our staff. So when the editor-in-chief of the newspaper is gone for five weeks to mourn a grandmother who died in Alaska, a friend in his canoe group who committed suicide and another relative who died, all within three weeks at the end of the fall semester, this family will support him, which means that getting out another issue of the newspaper is no longer possible. Helping him grieve by leaving him alone, giving him space and time to talk to the staff about life issues is by far more important and more meaningful to my kids. Yes, I know what they are up to in that newsroom, and it is not the Troy InVoice issue three. It is also the first time that kid has smiled in about a month. It is better that I do not know what is going on in the newsroom. So, we only put out three issues of the newspaper this year. A fierce advoca te for his students will make sure people know that is not from laziness, lack of passion or lack of skills. It is simply what my kids, my family, this year were able to accomplish, and that is something to be proud of. Three issues will never get a ticket to climb Mount Scholastic Journalism. Again, that is okay. In order to be a fierce advocate for my students, I have to be completely honest that the issue lies with me. I have to carefully parse my own needs for recognition and achievement. I have to locate the switch inside my head that loves the recognition, the honor, the status that comes with being seen as worthy by peers. To parse means to uncover a deeper meaning. The deeper meaning behind pushing my