By Frank Fernandez
Michael Troche is the 11th grade English as well the 7th grade Bible teacher. This is his first year teaching and has been through a lot to get to where he is today. Many people have difficulty deciding what they want in life and what they want to do with it and Mr. Troche is no different. Choosing between three different career options before deciding to become a teacher, he went through many decisions before settling into the one he has today.
Q: What were some of the career ideas you thought of having during middle and high school?
A: Like any nerdy middle/high school student, I wanted to do something that I thought I might enjoy doing. Making video games seemed like a no-brainer. Unfortunately, actually making video games is a brainer, and a math-brainer to boot, which was not my strong point at the end of high school. I was always good at giving friends advice too, so I had dabbled with the idea of being a psychologist or therapist too, but that notion wasn’t as serious.
Q: Did any of the hobbies you had contribute to what you wanted to be?
A: I wouldn’t say that any hobbies contributed to what I wanted to be, although I did love to write, but I will say that certain quirks about my character kind of made teaching a good fit. There’s the fact that I’m just a ham and I love performing, there’s the fact that I secretly love when all attention is focused on me, and I love being able to showcase my broad knowledge base. I used to be terrible at public speaking, but eventually I forced myself to be kind of good at it.
Q: At what point did you decide to become a teacher?
A: I only decided to become a teacher once I felt like I had exhausted all other possible options. Computer science was my first choice, but that required a lot of math. Journalism was second, but that was a dying business and creatively I would be put in a box. Writing would be my ideal career choice, but that doesn’t pay the bills. Teaching just kind of came as a “Well, there’s nothing else” option.
Q: What has teaching taught you about life?
A: If there’s one thing that teaching has taught me it’s that it’s the most important profession in the world. Teachers are responsible for educating and raising up the next generation of brilliant minds, year after year. More than that, since teachers see kids more than their parents in most respects, we have the overwhelmingly noble task of acting as a model for their moral compass and work ethic. The other thing that I would say I learned from teaching is that you have to be good at juggling many different abilities at the same time when you do it. Teacher, disciplinarian, parent, and in best cases, friend. These are only a few of the many hats that I wear as an educator.
Q: What’s one thing that you’d like to have in five years?
A: One thing I’d like to have in 5 years…can I say tenure? Does tenure even exist at this school? Who knows? More than that, I would hope to have a family by then. The biological clock is ticking, right?