Alumni Visit Free Minds Class

By the end of the first month of classes, students had already turned in their first essay and read Toni Morrison’s “Recitatif” and selections from The Epic of Gilgamesh. It was the perfect moment for a visit from Free Minds alumni to calm students’ anxieties and cheer them on for the year ahead.

On September 16, four Free Minds alumni came to impart their hard-earned wisdom to the class. Grace Adams ’09, Michelle Faires ’07, Charmaine Nichols ’09 and Larry Thomas ’08 gave advice on managing the coursework and finding a balance between school, family, and work. Michelle talked about curbing her reality TV addiction and Grace explained how to read Plato’s The Republic while nursing an infant (the trick, she said, is to read aloud to the baby).

Charmaine, Larry, and Michelle discussed how they involved their school-aged children in Free Minds. Doing homework together, talking about what they learned in class, and comparing grades was a truly unique opportunity, the alumni said. Their children pushed them to do their best just as much as they pushed their children to succeed at school.

The alumni panelists talked about continuing their education and (slowly) working toward a college degree. Their lives have gone in different directions since Free Minds, but all agreed that Free Minds was a turning point. “Stick with it,” they advised the students. “And congratulations on being here–you deserve it.”

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