Self-Assessment--Timm Ringhofer : LUSENET : M.Ed./International Falls : One Thread

First, allow me to introduce myself. My name is Timm Ringhofer, and I spent nearly the first 19 years of my life living on the family dairy farm near Meadowlands attending Toivola-Meadowlands High School.

By the time I had went to college, my life long dream to be a teacher was put on hold. I had decided to change my focus to engineering, aerospace engineering to be exact. I had a great interest in space exploration and thought maybe I would work for NASA someday. Everyone had told me that I was smart enough to be anything I wanted and could make lots of money. People told me that I should not settle for being a teacher when I could be something where my math abilities would be of more use. The money sounded really good to me and working for the space program was going to be great.

Mesabi Community College in Virginia, Minnesota, is where I started my advanced studies because it was small like T-M, and it was close to home. I obtained my pre-engineering degree while playing football and being an assistant coach for the womens basketball team. Coaching and sports are two additional loves of mine. Coaching was a natural to go along with teaching, but when the basketball season ended in March, 1990, I thought my coaching days were over.

The University of Minnesota at Minneapolis was my next stop on my way to NASA. However, I was losing my interest in engineering. It was getting difficult, and I had no love, no passion for what I was doing. Then, in October, came an occurrence that changed my path in life forever.

Nita, my high school sweetheart and now my wife, had become pregnant with our first child, Alexandra. I knew at that instant that I needed to make a decision that was going to provide me and my family with stability and an income. I agonized for almost three weeks, but finally did what my heart had been telling me for fifteen years, BE A TEACHER! Something I wanted to do, something I wanted to be, not what everyone else thought I should be. It was so simple!

In the end, I transferred to St. Cloud State University, where Nita had family and could be there for the support needed with a newborn. We got married in the fall of 1992 and Jessica, our second daughter, came along in May, 1994.

In the summer of 1994, after graduating in March from SCSU, I accepted my current position of math teacher and B-team football coach in International Falls. We have bought a home and added a third daughter to the mix, Anna. Right now, things seem to be very stable and happy on the home front.

-- Anonymous, January 13, 1999

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