One way our school stands out from any other is the remarkable relationship between students and teachers. A teacher at Grace Prep is not only a teacher, but also a mentor, a counselor, and a friend.
Many students here say teachers have made an everlasting impact on them. One teacher’s name seemed to tumble off student’s lips readily when discussing teachers.
-The man obsessed with neck ties.
-The man who doesn’t call his students by name.
-One of the wisest men we know.
When I was a Sophomore and Grace Prep was just a prospective school, I shadowed a student for a day. That day I heard the name “Mr. Wetterling” more times than I can count.
The student I shadowed, Senior Claire Bullington, told me, “Oh, you’ll love Mr. Wetterling. He gives all of his students nicknames.”
Confused, I thought “What? Every student? Surely not.”
Mr. Wetterling takes the time to not only get to know every one of his student’s real names, but he also comes up with a unique, never-used nickname.
Becoming a part of Grace my Junior year, I was unable to experience Mr. Wetterling’s class because he teaches Freshman History and English, but I was determined to get a nickname from him.
For the first month or so of my Junior year, I begged Mr. Wetterling for a nickname every time I saw him.
Every time he turned me down.
“You’d have to be in one of my classes, sorry,” he would say.
Finally, one day, I walked past him and said “Hey Mr. Wetterling!” His response? “Hey pipes.”
I had done it.
I made history as the first (and only) student to receive a nickname without taking one of his classes.
I received the name “Pipes” thanks to my last name… Schmoker.
Every nickname is so unique. Junior Zach Lester’s nickname is “Rocky”. Could it be because Zach likes the mountains? No.
Maybe he’s a fan of the iconic movie series? Wrong again.
Is it because he’s just really good at skipping rocks? Still wrong.
Zach Lester’s nickname is “Rocky” because the first two letters of Zach is “Za,” and the first three letters of Lester is “Les.” That spells Zales. Zales sells diamonds, and diamonds are rocks…
Talk about creative.
While I could go on and on about Mr. Wetterling’s wacky nicknames, I’d like to speak on a more serious note and stress the personal impact he’s had on his students.
“The year I took his class was the first year I actually did well in English… before his class, I hated writing,” said Junior Naamah McGee, “The lowest grade I ever made on a paper in his class was an 89.”
Mr. Wetterling’s teaching style and personal interaction with his students has been testified to on multiple occasions, and hatred for English or History has been turned into passion.
As well as insightful, Mr. Wetterling knows how to make class enjoyable.
“No matter what mood I was in, the moment I walked into Mr. Wetterling’s class I was instantly in a better mood,” said Junior Sage Post.
“Yeah, he always found some way to make us laugh,” added Junior Chandler Tolliver.
To this day, I’ve never heard anyone speak of Mr. Wetterling poorly. Well, except for the homework load… But that’s a story for another time.