I read a lot about educators yesterday, World Teachers' Day.  I saw stories of how frequently they are underpaid and overworked.  I heard how in some districts, they have to buy their own basic supplies like paper for handouts.  Despite these hardships, there is a common thread; that teachers teach because they are committed to helping students learn and grow.

Also yesterday, I happened to catch an interview with actress Sela Ward.  She said it was an art teacher who recognized her talent and suggested she persue a career in the arts, rather than science which is what she thought she might major in.  She's grateful that the teacher took such an interest in her.

I think of my own experience at school.  After delivering a "campaign" speech for student council, some teachers came up to me and said, "Lisa, you have a very nice speaking voice.  You should consider doing something with that professionally."  They pointed out a gift I really didn't see in myself and gave me encouragement and direction at a time when I really didn't know what I wanted to do with my life.  I'm forever grateful to those educators who pointed me in the direction of a communications degree and career in broadcasting.

Was there a teacher in YOUR life who inspired you to develop your talent?  Did a teacher give you direction or perhaps RE-direct you to a career that better suited your skills? Please give them a warm New Jersey shout-out in the Comments section.