by Pam Withers
My favorite part of running the keenreaders website is choosing someone to interview each month for our Interview feature. Basically, if they have anything to do with youth literacy, they intrigue me and become a potential candidate.
So when I stumbled across something called www.MenTeach.org, which promotes getting more male teachers into schools (thereby hopefully influencing reluctant readers that reading is not entirely a female thing), I decided that at some point I’d pursue an interview with whoever founded it. Not just because the majority of reluctant readers are boys, but because I think (and many mothers and female teachers agree) that girls could benefit from more positive male role models in the school system too.
This past month, I got around to checking out their website, and who do you think popped up on my screen? The name and photo of Bryan G. Nelson, founder.
“So that’s where you’ve gotten to, Bryan!” I exclaimed. Because not only did Bryan and I attend Beloit College in Wisconsin together thirty-some years ago, but we co-edited the college newspaper, The Round Table. I recall a free-spirited, dedicated colleague with whom I shared many laughs as well as late-night deadline panics in the cramped little attic college-newspaper room.
It was fun to request a Keen Readers interview with Bryan, then add a “by the way…” He too was surprised and delighted at reconnecting in this way.
So, here’s to a small world, and to folks who endeavor to make a difference. Keep up your good work, Bryan!