Most people associate the month of March with luck. While I am not sure if I believe in
leprechauns or pots of gold, I know for fact that Environmental Biology 150 is lucky to have
Dr. Hopkins as a professor. He always goes to great lengths to prepare us for the future by
encouraging us to apply what we know to the real world. |
With the warm spring weather Dr. Hopkins decided it was much too nice outside for us
to continue to hold class inside. So, on a couple of occasions this month he led his class out
to the campus duck pond. There he asked us to look around and asked us questions about
the living organisms in and around the pond. This really helped me apply what I was learning
in the classroom to life all around me. He also had us do a small soil experiment so we could
see the importance of vegetation in avoiding erosion. It meant so much to me to be able to
literally get my hands dirty and apply my knowledge to the real world--not just for a test.
Professor Hopkins also invites guest speakers to talk to his classes about what they do
in their field of biology. The speakers come full of interesting stories that energize us
students about getting involved. Like the trips to the duck pond, listening to the speakers
allowed us to see directly how the information we are learning in class can be applied to real
Another big part of Dr. Hopkins’ class is his encouragement to look ahead to the future.
He lets his students know that they can get involved in keeping the world clean and
promoting a more sustainable future. He prompts us to open our eyes and try to think of
solutions to current problems. Dr. Hopkins is very much in favor of students not being afraid
to get involved and really seek out real world experiences.
Dr. Hopkins also helps his students by choosing active teacher’s assistance (TAs). The
TAs have organized themselves so whenever a student is confused or needs some help there
is almost always a TA available. They are willing to look over work before hand, email
reminders, and hold test reviews. Professor Hopkins and his TAs keep the class schedule very
organized so there are no surprises for the students. It is hard to get discouraged in a class
where so much help is available. This was shown especially in the month of March as
students started looking over their final grades and as main tests were approaching.
From his efforts it is obvious that Dr. Hopkins really cares about his students and their
future. He promotes feeling of empowerment by encouraging self thought, he always has
help available through his TAs, and he encourages students to get hands-on experience.
There is no doubt that having a teacher like this is just as lucky as finding a four leaf clover
or a pot of gold.
Word Count: 502