A Teacher and a Torchbearer

by Accolades Staff
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Name: Paul Troy

Major: History with secondary education minor Hometown: Santa Fe, Tennessee

Why did you choose UT? “I chose the University of Tennessee because of the great in-state value, SEC tradition, and the opportunity to earn a master’s degree and teacher certification in five years.”

How has CEHHS prepared you for your future? “CEHHS has given me the tools I need to succeed in college, the classroom, and in the community. At the same time, the professors in the college have challenged me to think outside the box and to take big ideas into the classroom. Finally, being surrounded by like-minded individuals has allowed me to develop a cohort of teachers who want to make a difference each and every day.”

What does it mean for you to be a Torchbearer? “Being named a Torchbearer was the most humbling experience of my life. When I first came to UT I had no clue about servant leadership; then I read the Torchbearer’s Creed—’One that beareth a torch shadoweth oneself to give light to others.’ I decided to take that to heart and strive to be the platform for other people to stand on and to focus on making a difference instead of making a reputation. Moving forward I hope to keep that attitude with me as an educator.”

How did you come up with the SophoMORE Living and Learning Community that you helped design? “One fall, a friend and I were talking about all of the campus initiatives for freshmen and we wanted to figure out a way to better retain and include sophomores on campus. I researched several ideas and saw an opportunity for a living and learning community.”

What will you miss the most about UT? “I will miss the sea of orange on game days, the feeling of snow hitting my face on a cold day walking back from class, the sights and sounds of college students on a spring afternoon, and the warm feeling that comes with running into a friend on campus.”

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