From Big Dan:
I’m writing a recommendation letter for a professor who wrote me a recommendation letter for medical school. He’s being nominated for a “Distinguished Teacher” award. I have procrastinated for a terribly long time and am afraid that my letter will be discarded no sooner than it is received.
Reflecting on this professor, I have realized one fascinating quality of every good professor I have ever learned from: vision. They all had an exceptional understanding of not only the content and thinking patterns I must learn to master their field, but they had a crisp picture of the beauty their students could create with proper nourishing. They all yearned for something deeper than “smart” students. They ached to lead thirsty minds to reason and order and truth.
Maybe it’s cliche, but this professor truly taught me that it isn’t so much what you do, as how you do it. He was the only datgum science teacher in college to engage my mind and convince me my studying wasn’t vanity pushing forward to medical school. He showed me science as a worthy end, not just a means to an end. Now, if I can only extract this to life in its entirety.