Friday, March 29, 2013

My Goal: To be the Thomas Menino of Independent College Counselors

Often my students answer an essay prompt about a person living or dead they would like to meet. I hadn't thought about it much myself until today when I read an article in the NY Times about Boston mayor Thomas M. Menino. He is now at the top of my "want to meet" list. Excerpts from the article might explain why.

“I am here with the people I love, to tell the city I love, that I will leave the job that I love,” Mr. Menino, 70, the city’s longest-serving mayor, told the standing-room-only crowd of well-wishers. He said essentially that he was not up to the job, at least not the way he wanted to do it. After illnesses last year that left him hospitalized for two months, he said he could not keep up his schedule of attending every ribbon-cutting, every dinner for a new homeowner, every school play — the small events that filled his days and threaded him to the city’s residents.

The Globe poll affirmed an eye-popping tidbit from previous polls -- that Mr. Menino had personally met more than half of Boston's 625,000 residents, an astounding feat for the chief executive of a major American city.

My personal goal is to be the "Thomas Menino" of independent college counselors. In the past few weeks I have watched students at the state dance competition, the national qualifying tournament of Oregon speech and debate students, and at spring jazz and choir concerts. I may not fit in every school play, every sports competition, every awards dinner, and every graduation party, but I tell students that if they invite me, I will do my best to be there. Why? Because I love the students I work with - who they are now and who they will become - and it is one way for me to show I care and appreciate the trust that they and their parents have placed in me. I have the best job in the world!

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