by Georgia Jeffries
“Brandy Mary Marlene Sawyer” was announced as MHS senior, Brandy Sawyer, walked across the brightly lit stage to receive her high school diploma. Sawyer was walking through MHS one last time… or so she thought.
Sawyer had been a star athlete at MHS, competing in volleyball, basketball, and softball, all at the varsity level. But come June, she and along with the rest of the 1995 graduating class, had to say goodbye to the small town that most had called home since a young age. It was time for college and the pressure was on.
Sawyer had to face the decision of which university or college to attend. After some thinking and evaluation, she decided to further her education in Terre Haute, Indiana at Indiana State University. Sawyer then spent her time as a sycamore by studying to become an educator. Sawyer graduated from ISU in 1999.
After graduating from college, Sawyer became a P.E. teacher in 2002 at Benton Central High School in Oxford, Indiana, where she taught for eight years.
“I lived in West Lafayette, and the high school was about 30 minutes away. There really wasn't much to do around the high school so I'd see students in West Lafayette quite a bit,” Sawyer said.
During her time at Benton Central, Sawyer was a freshman girls P.E. teacher. Sawyer was also apart of the varsity volleyball and varsity basketball coaching staffs. After teaching at Benton Central, Sawyer began to miss home and decided to move back to Mooresville.
"I like being back here because it's comfortable and my family is here,” Sawyer said. Sawyer received a teaching position at Paul Hadley Middle School, then taking a position at the high school a few years later.
"I like it (teaching at Mooresville) but it's weird because some of the teachers I had are still here so it's nice to know people. It's also weird because some of my high school friend's kids are my students,” Sawyer said.
Sawyer has a reputation for being a role model to students. Many students feel comfortable going to Sawyer when they need to vent or need advice. Not only for school related issues, but issues about life in general.
“She is someone you can open up to when you have no one else to talk to,” junior Marisa Voyles said. “She is very funny and nice, I have had her for a teacher for about three years and I’m glad I met her,” Voyles added.
“It’s nice to make a life long connection with a kid, to know that I made some kind of impact on their life," Sawyer said.
Sawyer teaches various classes at the high school. From team sports to basic P.E., she has many students in a day. Her classes have students ranging from freshman to seniors. Sawyer also teaches a P.E. class for special education students.
Sawyer began coaching again at MHS. She was one of many coaches for the volleyball and basketball teams, again at the varsity level, here at MHS. Through coaching and teaching, she has made such strong bonds with students that she is still in contact with students that have already graduated.
“I like the relationships that I build with students, I'm still in contact with some kids that I taught in BC (Benton Central),” Sawyer said.
In Sawyer’s office, athletic posters line the walls of some of her former students. Some with messages of thanks towards Sawyer. These posters are not just decoration to cover the walls with, but reminders to Sawyer of her past students who continue to look up to her.
Although Sawyer enjoyed the time she spent in Oxford/Lafayette, she says she very much enjoys teaching at her alma mater.
“I like it quite a bit, even on the days the kids are giving me a hard time. One day I had to get one of Mrs. Clark’s yearbooks from my senior year to prove that I really did graduate 20 years ago, because some of the kids didn’t believe me,” Sawyer said.
Along with some of her old friend’s kids, Sawyer has also taught her godchildren. One being MHS sophomore Aaron Faulkenberg.
“She is a very caring individual,” Faulkenberg said. “I enjoy her teaching at my school.”
Sawyer walked these halls 20 years ago, thinking her days at MHS were over, unaware that years later, she would be back to teach at her alma mater. Although that walk in 1995 wasn’t her last, she now walks through the halls as an adult with a different outlook on life; but maintains a true blue and gold spirit.
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