Listening to a guest speaker is an experience that most students enjoy. It enhances their education, gives a diversion from the normal and exposes a new point of view.
Pierce Puyallup student McKenzie Klopple has never heard a guest speaker at Pierce, but she remembers having guest speakers in her high school classes.
“It was a different point of view,” Klopple said.
Chemistry teacher Ralph Morasch has brought in guest speakers for multiple reasons.
“Sometimes to talk about the importance of the career the students are working on,” Morasch said. “Sometimes I have brought in past students or experts in an area to add depth and meaning to the class and to add fun and history.”
Morasch brings in different speakers to enhance the learning experience and to give students and to make the material more relatable. He invites a guest speaker who acts out the history of the famous life of the first female Nobel Prize winner.
“One of my favorite guest to bring in is an instructor from Bellevue College who plays Madam Curie,” Morasch said. “It’s an amazing experience which often times leaves students in tears. This type of guest can really have an impact on the class as a whole.”
Morasch said that there’s no formal process to bring in a guest speaker. Occasionally, he asks the science department at the Fort Steilacoom campus or other budget programs to help fund travel for a guest speaker, and invites other students and faculty members to come see the guest speaker.
Not only do guest speakers help students understand the material they are learning better, but it shows them why they are learning what they are.
“It’s amazing when students learn that people from the real world use the same equipment they use. Oftentimes, this helps the students understand better why we are teaching what,” Morasch said.
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