By Emely Leon Rivas, Grade 7
“Always look for the light in your students’ eyes! If you don’t see it, try harder!” These are the wise words of Mrs. Eggers, a long-time teacher of St. Thomas the Apostle Catholic Academy in Woodhaven. Mrs. Eggers is currently the Science and English Language Arts teacher for the upper grades at St. Thomas the Apostle Catholic Academy in Woodhaven, and I decided to do an interview with her, speaking on behalf of the pandemic but also on her past and current teaching experiences.
My first question was “How is it to be a teacher during a global pandemic?”. Mrs. Eggers responds with “At the beginning of the pandemic it was very scary. You may remember how on the last day of school I had to run around and make sure everyone had email addresses and make sure that all of the students knew how to use Google Classroom. I was so proud of all of you that volunteered to help newer students and stepped up to the responsibility of the task. Somehow “teamwork” pulled it off once again!” My next question was ‘’What is the most fulfilling part of being a teacher at S.T.A.C.A.?’’. She responded, “The best part about teaching is that “Ah-Ha” moment! When I see that, it makes me want to do more and more! I also love the fact that I get to teach so many of you a second time, and you say “Remember when…”, then I know we did it! The students and me! We built memories that we will always remember! Just like that teamwork after all of these years. It never goes away!”.
My third question was “Why did you choose to become a teacher at S.T.A.C.A.?”. To sum up, she says that her children attended and graduated from this school, and she has always “respected the Parish and the teachers”. She wanted to help build the community. But she joined the faculty team after her children graduated, she says “I didn’t want to step on my kids when they were here. They deserved their own space.” My next question was “What is the best lesson a student has taught you?”. She goes on to say “The best lesson some of my students have taught me is to reach higher and deeper when I need to, in order to be a better teacher. If I want my students to continue to be better students, I too must be a better teacher! And everyone is not the best student in school, I always try to support a student that has a gift in their out of school activities. We should support all of our students’ talents as much as we can.”
To end on a high note, my last interview question was “In general, what is the best part about teaching?”. “The pride I feel for each of you is definitely the best part of teaching. Each one of you has accomplished so much over the years! I am so proud of each and every one of my students for all of your accomplishments! I hope that each of you knows that! Some of those accomplishments may seem small in comparison to others, but you are all great in your own way, and I hope that each of you know that.”
After over 20 years of teaching at our academy, we can see how Mrs. Eggers deals with the strenuous work of being a teacher during a pandemic and how much she loves her job! In closing, I present this quote from Mrs. Eggers: “May we all get through what God has chosen us to deal with and to do so stronger, with a larger heart and a stronger Faith!
May we all hold on to the lessons we have learned and never forget that with God’s help, we will never forget to help our neighbor and be kind!”