It’s hard to remember that once upon a time, professors were students. And just like students, they picked up a few of those memories to smile back on. Maybe not all of them were the wisest decisions, but they brought a few laughs.
Dr. Christi Hein, a professor in the political science department at Colorado Mesa University, teaches American government, pre-law in practice and her newest edition, an LSAT prep class to focus on helping students prepare for law school.
But, what makes Hein unique is her incomparable level of humanness. Not only is she caring for her students, she remembers being a student herself. Hein has a knack for being witty and clever, especially when it comes to the teaching community.
As students, we experience a plethora of fundraisers for various school organizations. For Hein, one of those fundraisers was a teacher auction at her high school to support the journalists at school, such as the newspaper. The event auctioned off teachers as lunch dates. Students would bid on the teacher they wanted to take them to lunch.
“She was my honors English teacher and she just hated me. Our personalities just clashed. I don’t think she liked what she did, and she was definitely a teacher that picked favorites.” Hein describes.
Ironically, Hein continued her education to study and teach English.
Her teacher had to leave the room as the bidding started since she was in charge of the fundraiser. Hein, just a junior in high school at the time, had $150 in her pocket and a payback on the brain.
“I made sure. They started off, ‘five, ten,’ and I said ‘one hundred bucks.’ And everyone just stopped, because they knew the whole relationship. And that was it, cost me 100 bucks.” It might’ve been an expensive lunch date, but it was well worth every penny. “Best hundred bucks ever spent.”
The teacher entered back into the room and approached her class pets, asking them where she would be taking them to lunch. That is when Hein approached, making sure no one else was within earshot of them. “And that’s when I told her, ‘I bought your ass.’”
Because this English teacher was in charge of the fundraiser, she had planned the most exquisite lunch down in Malibu, right by the beach. Hein took two of her friends and was sure to be at The Sandcastle, their lunch spot, extra early.
She told the employees that it was their mother’s birthday. Despite the teacher not being much older than Hein at the time, the employees came over to their table and sang Happy Birthday. Hein was sure to bring her camera and take photographs. Hein was also an editor of the yearbook at the time.
“And so I blew the pictures up and put them all over the hallways.”
While we all have professors we cannot say we mix well with, Hein takes the cake injustice served. Though sometimes professors are not remembered for their time as students, others remind us that we learn from the best.