By Alyssa Daniels
After 12 years of teaching at WCHS, DCUSH students said goodbye to Dual Credit U.S. History and U.S. History teacher Chris Wood. He recently left on Jan. 12 to take a new position at Franciscan Alliance to learn a variety of technology tools and software applications.
This new job is different from what Wood is used to; it’s going to take some time adjusting from working with students to working with adults.
“This opportunity will allow me to focus more on helping others learn how to use a variety of technology tools and software applications,” Wood said. “Specifically, I will be designing online training courses, instructional ‘how-to’ videos, and conducting training in-person training sessions for clinical (doctors, nurses, etc.) administrative (administrative assistant, management, etc.) focused on a wide variety of software tools used by Franciscan personnel. I’ll be developing content for Franciscan’s 14 hospitals in [the] Indiana and Chicago area.”
Sociology and AP U.S. History (APUSH) teacher Justin Brownfield has taken over the instruction of Wood’s DCUSH classes. This is Brownfield’s first time ever teaching DCUSH and he is trying to keep some of the grading and teaching styles Wood did, so the students don’t have to go through as much change.
According to Brownfield, the biggest challenge he has faced is switching from teaching two classes to three classes.
“Having two U.S. history courses who are in two different points in history and the pace of those two U.S. history courses, are two totally different animals,” Brownfield said. “The biggest challenge is keeping things consistent and keeping things at a point where I can make sure everything is running smoothly and keeping time with the rest of the semester.”
Before Wood left, he talked with Brownfield about taking over the class and then they approached Zobel about it. They all three agreed Brownfield would be the best person for the job.
“The thought of teaching a dual credit class intrigued me and then Mr. Wood and I had conversations and then Mr. Zobel had also thought of me as someone who could teach it as well,” Brownfield said.
Junior Collin Barton is one of Wood’s former DCUSH students. He has really gotten used to the way Wood has taught, so he’ll have to adjust to the different teaching style. He is going to miss Wood, but wishes him the best.
“I loved Wood as a teacher. He really was passionate about his classes and pushed us to do our best,” Barton said.
Since Wood has been at WCHS for 12 years, there are many things he is going to miss about teaching, including his colleagues that he has become great friends with.
“The two things I’ll miss the most by far are my students and my department colleagues. I have had a lot of awesome students over the years and this year was one of the best groups I’ve ever had. My department is honestly like a family to me. We have supported each over so much over the past 12 years,” Wood said. “A number of us in the department have kids in the same age range and this helped us become even closer. In addition, the staff at WCHS is truly one of the best around.”
Wood has one thing he would like to tell his students, former students and colleagues: “Thank you! Thank you for being you and always giving me your best. Always take chances and don’t ever be satisfied,” Wood said.