By Alison Nadler, SED’17
Every student in the School of Education can tell you about Professor Tate and the hats he wears on the first day of our Introduction to Education course to demonstrate the various roles a teacher may hold. He explains that teachers are comedians, mentors, friends, and disciplinarians. Some teachers are just disciplinarians and some teachers are just friends. Looking back, I recognized that the best teachers are those who can assume all four roles. Now as a student in SED, I’ve realized that it’s not just teachers in a classroom who are multiple people at once.
I work in the Office of Undergraduate Student Services at SED. Being in the building everyday allows me to understand who my professors really are and what they do. They’re not just people who teach my classes: they are advisors to multiple students, they are researchers, they write articles and books, they attend conferences, they are sources of information, they share their experiences, they network with the larger Boston community, and they develop new classes. I even saw one of my professors in her role as a parent at a school where I have my pre-practicum. I am fortunate for the opportunity to see what I call the “behind the scenes” of SED.
But it’s not just my professors who do it all; the SED students hold many roles, too. It is not uncommon for one student to take classes with a professor who is also her advisor, work on group projects with peers who are her roommates, attend clubs of which her friends are presidents and have the same friends attend a club of which she is president, work on research with a professor (the same professor who, at some point, probably hosted a speaker to whom this student came to listen), and volunteer for Big BU events that at least one of her SED friends helped coordinate.
The interconnectivity of the SED community is what makes it so amazing. When students in SED say “we are a small community within a larger university,” they’re not lying. Our SED community is rare in that a huge percentage of SED students, faculty, and staff are involved in so many ways. Each of us contributes something separate and unique, but at the same time all of our contributions culminate to develop SED into what it is. I always wonder if I would be the person I am today without the experiences I’ve had at SED.