I was an outlier by the time I graduated high school in 2016. Why? Because I knew what I wanted to do with my life.
While there are numerous teachers I can thank for instilling valuable traits into my life, there's only one to thank for creating a passion for journalism and showing me what my future could be. Shelly Norden is the reason I fell in love with journalism.
I was a quiet freshman who didn't have a clue in the world what to do after high school. It took one semester with Mrs. Norden for me to know that I was meant to be a journalist.
I went on to take Mrs. Norden's class seven times throughout my years at Kettle Run. Once I graduated, it didn't take long for me to get promoted to sports editor of James Madison University’s newspaper.
It's because of Mrs. Norden I earned that position and went on to win three Virginia Press Association Awards before I even had a college diploma in hand.
It pains me to see Mrs. Norden teaching outside the realms of journalism. She'll be a great teacher in any subject she is put in, but she's a phenomenal teacher when she's leading a group of young, aspiring journalists. I witnessed it for myself — she's meant to teach journalism.
My only hope is that Fauquier County Public Schools will correct its error and put Mrs. Norden back in a journalism position so she can continue to inspire students like me.