“You are where I was. And I am where you will be.”
This week represents a major life demarcation for me. After 33 years of classroom teaching, I will be retiring from my college. I am not retiring, however, from my calling to education.
For me, so-called retirement represents a time of re-purposing, renewing, re-calibrating, re-energizing and resilience.
I will still provide targeted facilitation programs nationwide (I am working on engagements for 2016) and work on a diversity of writing projects (textbook development, two novels, and one screenplay). I will be even more involved in higher education than I had been—just on a different level and schedule.
Video recommendation for the week:
As I get ready to lock up my office door and head down the hallway for one final time this coming week, I want to say thank you to all of my colleagues for the years of camaraderie, friendship, and mentoring. And I want to share a few parting thoughts.
- When Derek Jeter announced his retirement from the New York Yankees last year, he said, “I have gotten the very most out of my life playing baseball, and I have absolutely no regrets. Now it is time for the next chapter. I have new dreams and aspirations, and I want new challenges.”
- I feel the same way. Now is my time to move to the next chapter. I have gotten so much from teaching students for the last three-plus decades. I have learned even more from those same students and my colleagues. And it is time to dig deeper in other parts of life.
- I was told a few years back by someone in the publishing industry that if I were not in the classroom that I would lose credibility in the publishing or educational world. I do NOT believe that for a moment. With reflection and application, those 33 years of experience will geometrically expand.
- A dear mentor many years ago reminded me that our lives can be roughly divided into three parts. The first third is about knowing. The second third about doing. And the last third is about being. I am looking forward to taking much more time to reflect on what I have accomplished—and what I still can do for students and my colleagues across this nation.
Rather than a time of sunset, the sun is most definitely rising.
- A long time ago I read that the three important components in life are people, place, and purpose. When we are with people we love, in a place we love, pursuing a purpose we love, we have a better chance of leading a fulfilled and contented life. I found that purpose in the classrooms, in the hallways, and around the campus. Even the trying times–especially the trying times–helped make me who I am.
- What I have really loved about teaching was that it allowed me to take and make the opportunities to constantly re-discover myself. Rediscover my purpose. I urge my colleagues to do the same; constantly rediscover. Forget about flying under the radar. Forget about perfection. Just go out and do it. Do it and make sure you are living the life and the purpose you are intended to live. Continue to make a difference for your students and your community.
- And finally, I remember what an octogenarian shared with me one morning as he was—interestingly enough—going through his morning workout at the gym. “You are where I was. And I am where you will be.”
We all travel the journey. The sun rises and sets each day. And then rises again.
We can learn from one another. Thank you for allowing me to learn from you.
Until we meet online or somewhere around this great nation, may your sunsets be beautiful and your sunrises glorious.
Make it a great life. And H.T.R.B. as needed.
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Information on my book, Choices for College Success (3rd ed.), can be found at Pearson Education.
(c) 2015. Steve Piscitelli. All rights reserved.