Out of all the college
professors I took classes from, in my undergraduate and graduate classes, I can count the really outstanding teachers that I have had on my two hands. The rest of the college professors I took classes from fell into a range of good to poor. This was not so, with one in particular, Dr. Gordon E. Moss. Dr. Moss was one of my sociology professors in undergraduate school at Eastern Michigan University. He was a short man who wore very thick glasses and two hearing aids. His physical limitation did not for one nanosecond diminish who he was. The man was a brilliant teacher. His lectures and classroom discussions had students on the edge of their seats as they listened to someone who brought the issues of sociology to life. His excitement for what he taught was evident by his tone of voice, the sparkle in his eye, and the deep knowledge he possessed of his subject.He Encouraged Us to Think
Students were captured by his words but more importantly by his questions. Dr. Moss was a teacher who made you think. He encouraged you to come up with your own answers and then to question them before you settled on believing them.
I remember some of his best lectures were after class. It was then, that a small group of us would gather around his desk, as he answered our specific questions, and further explained his concepts and ideas. He was not afraid to share some of the personal mistakes he had made in his life as a professor as well as a parent; after all he was teaching us about sociology.Real Life Application
When he taught, he taught us about life principles that we could apply in our own lives. One of the things he taught by his own example, was the importance of working in a career that you love. Dr. Moss communicated to us, that your work could be something that allowed you to express who you were as a human being. In my early twenties, this was an important insight for me to grasp. Up until that point, I really did not have the concept, that my future career would be something I would do because I loved it, but rather something I had to do to earn a living.
My point is, as you take your undergraduate and graduate college classes, make it a priority to attend the “after the class” lectures, and ask your professor questions that are going to help you learn how to think for yourself. Your benefit will be the opportunity to learn lessons that will serve you for a lifetime.
Tom Borg is president of Tom Borg Consulting, LLC. He is a business consultant, speaker, coach and author. He helps companies and organization become more profitable by increasing their value and lowering their costs through the professional development of their managers and employees.