Next week we will say goodbye—just for the second semester!—to Spanish teacher Glenn Stanfield. Glenn is the recipient of the 2012-2013 McEvoy Faculty Sabbatical. Established in 2005, the McEvoy endowment provides sabbatical funding for faculty members who have served the MA community for at least seven years. Glenn is now in his 36th year and is one of the long-time, cherished members of our community.
The sabbatical is designed to be restorative and personal: there are no restrictions or stipulations regarding use. As I shared in June, Glenn writes, “I’ll be busy as a full-time husband; as a father of two children, who are busy raising their own families; as a grandfather (i.e., play buddy and storyteller); and as a brother looking for the opportunity to be and work with the person who has been my most enduring friend, Wayne, my older brother. Ultimately, the sabbatical will offer me a refreshing release from teaching duties. I expect that this will help me return fresh, motivated and ready to be back in the class when I return in the fall of 2013.”
I wanted to share some words about Glenn that I read during last year’s faculty and staff appreciation party:
Grace, drive, physical dynamo, gracious, thoughtful, father, grandfather, teacher, learner, colleague—all of these are words that come to mind when I see Glenn walking down the hill from Foster Hall, xeroxing in the workroom, or pausing for a conversation in the walkway on Mission. Glenn is a gentleman, a gentle man who respects each individual on his or her own terms, always operates from a place of generosity, always looks forward and up. With all of that, it is easy to forget that he is a fierce competitor; he is in better shape than almost any individual on this campus. An outings leader, a former coach, a runner, a leaper, Glenn loves the physical world. When he tore his Achilles tendon, it wasn’t the pain that bothered him; it was not being able to exercise. We should all have him as our role model. And most importantly, let’s focus on this: students come first in his class, as his advisees, and on outings. Always and without exception.
Every activity is a moment for learning and growing with Glenn. As a 35-year teacher of Spanish here, he has set the bar. Take the time to sit in his class, and you will see the energy of joy at work within those four walls. His shoes are trainers, I think, perhaps because he is always about to break into a sprint, figuratively or even literally. Watching him talk to a student or make a point with a colleague is to see consideration at work, for the person, the issue, and the process. I believe that his expertise as a Spanish teacher makes this happen: he can hold two perspectives, two languages if you will, without compromising either. Glenn, we are grateful for your gentle nature and your incredible energy that makes us all better for being together with you. You are truly one of the great teachers that I have known.
We’ll miss you, Glenn—and we look forward to your return in August!