It is with great pleasure that we announce that Todd Higashi is our September Teacher of the Month. Mr. Higashi teaches anatomy and biology at Alameda Science & Technology Institute. After receiving a stack of letters from students and colleagues detailing his passion and dedication for teaching, we are honored to recognize him for his outstanding commitment to his field.
Beyond simply sharing his knowledge of science, Mr. Higashi forms lasting bonds with his students and inspires them to develop a genuine interest in the material. One student wrote, “Mr. Higashi has accomplished so much, including making me care about science. I know he has inspired others to strive to do their best.” Mr. Higashi is committed to making sure all of his students understand the subject at hand, answering questions with clarity, repeating information with patience, and taking time to make himself available outside the classroom for those who need extra assistance.
Perhaps Mr. Higashi’s greatest strength as an educator, however, is his ability to create connections with his students on a level beyond textbooks or syllabi. One colleague wrote, “Todd is the heart and soul of ASTI.” Nearly all the students who wrote to us explained that Mr. Higashi is not only an excellent teacher, but also a trusted mentor. Students say that he is known for his sense of humor and his approachability, to the extent that he can be found, between classes, chatting with students about any number of topics. Students also feel comfortable coming to him with more serious problems, trusting his advice, and feeling he will respect them. One student wrote, “Mr. Higashi is probably the coolest teacher I have ever had.”
In recognition of his work, 826 Valencia has given Mr. Higashi $1,500 to use as he sees fit. Thank you, Mr. Higashi, for your outstanding contribution to education! We are thrilled to know teachers like you.