Tim Fehringer

Site: St. Frances Academy Baltimore, MD

College: Augustana College

Responsibility: 10th and 12th Grade, World History and American Government Teacher. Assistant Boys and Girls Varsity Tennis Coach Assistant Boys Varsity Basketball Coach

The most important part of my job is showing up on time, every single day.

Very rarely does the population that I serve have consistency within their life. If I teach 100 students about a subject they are learning about or even if I sat in the hallways and said nothing, simply being in their presence day in and day out is far and away the most important part of my job.

As a first year teacher, rarely do you have any idea if I am having any success at all. Nearly every situation is foreign to me. Students by nature do not walk up to you and tell you how wonderful of a job you are doing. Besides having an administrator tell me that I was fulfilling my duty, the only way I truly understood that I was making a difference was by reading between the lines. I found out that I have been successful by watching the students interact around me. Respect is given, private stories of their lives are shared with me and comments are made between students about me. The final nail in the coffin was when I began getting emails from parents about my work.

When college students sign up for service work, they often do it to complete a mission. Some sign up because they have nothing planned for the following year, others because their friends are planning to or have in the past. A large portion signs up to help and make a difference in whatever way they can. From the outside, this selfless approach makes it look as if the volunteer is doing it because of the population in need. I came into the program with similar interests. I will leave with a completely different mentality. The Lasallian Volunteer Program has given me more than I would have ever taught a student about an American Government topic. And because of this, I feel I have a much better view on many different issues, compared to if I would have stayed in the environment so many of my college friends chose.

Living with the De La Salle Brothers is not what you think. With all the respect for them in them in the world, they are humans. They are not forces of nature that do not have flaws, personalities or a sense of humor. The choice to join the Lasallian Volunteer Program was not solely based on the fact that I get to live with the Brothers. Much like buying a gift during Christmas time, a nice little gift wrapping comes with it. Coming home from a long day at work to life veterans is a great bonus. The advice, support and love they put forth is a Volunteers dream.