Each summer for the past 24 years I have spent one week at a little camp called Harmony Highlands Singing School, first learning and now teaching others how to sight-read and sing a cappella using the solfége system. (If you’ve seen The Sound of Music, think about the scene where Maria teaches the von Trapp children the Do-Re-Mi song. As it says, “When you know the notes to sing, you can sing most anything!”) I hold no degrees in music; my knowledge is simply what I have learned from many wonderful teachers and mentors through the years who displayed patience, offered encouragement, and continually inspired.
The system we have in place at the camp is not uncommon. One generation teaches the next generation, and so forth. This succession takes place not only with the music but also in every other aspect of running the camp, from supply purchases to cleaning to feeding 250+ people per meal. The knowledge is passed down, and each successor builds and utilizes his or her own individual strengths and talents to continue the work.
As fall and the beginning of a new school year approach for many, this same system can be seen. Teachers sharing knowledge with students who go on to utilize their own gifts in various ways. No doubt we can all point to a teacher or professor who impacted our lives and encouraged us to follow a particular passion or dream. When we think of them, it is not only that they successfully taught us a particular subject, but the “extra” they provided – encouragement, a little push, or simply making it fun. Not only is knowledge transferred, but the belief that I can do something with that knowledge.
Fall also brings football season with its own examples of great coaches and their athletes. My own personal witness is that I attended The University of Alabama from 2002-2006. We had three different head coaches within four years. Whichever team you support, there is no denying that Coach Saban has had a dramatic effect on the football program at UA, serving as a mentor to both student-athletes and other coaches.
The examples are endless, and we all have something to share, whether personally or professionally. Every summer when I teach my next group of 10-12-year-old students the shape notes and Kodály rhythm method, I think of my own teachers and hope to impart the same gifts they granted to me.
At Bridgeworth, we also serve as teachers and coaches. We hope to educate and offer accountability. In doing so, our aim is to help give structure to your financial situation, providing the knowledge needed to help make sound financial decisions unique to your goals, and encouraging you to achieve them. To re-phrase the song, “when you know your situation, you can make the best application”. We look forward to partnering with you.