By Melissa Paredes
Have you ever wondered if what you’re doing with your life is making an impact? If what you’ve chosen as a career will last longer than just a couple years, giving you the chance to make a mark on the world? We all have a desire to leave a legacy, to make a difference in this world. And sometimes we get a glimpse of that impact.
That’s how it was for Dave Schutt, a teacher at Faith Academy in Manila, Philippines. On January 10, 2014, students, alumni and faculty put together a surprise event to commemorate the 25 years that Dave dedicated to countless students. And what a surprise it was!
In the months leading up to the event, Faith Academy faculty had created a hidden Facebook group, requesting that former colleagues, alumni and current students share something about Dave — a favorite memory, an old picture or a thank-you expressing how their life has been directly impacted by his commitment to teaching.
Dave’s legacy at Faith Academy goes all the way back to 1989, when he and his wife, Tammy, moved to the Philippines. That August he began teaching, and he has continued to do so ever since then. He’s taught multiple classes throughout the years, depending on what has been needed — Algebra I and II, pre-Calculus, AP Calculus, physical education and weights. He’s also coached wrestling, boys’ volleyball, track and field, boys’ soccer and girls’ basketball.
I myself was privileged to have Dave as a teacher for several classes throughout high school. In fact, he’s probably the only reason my algebra classes were bearable! Somehow he made math fun, and I could see that he genuinely cared for us — both as a class and as individuals.
That genuine care was clearly noted by many students and faculty throughout the years, as the overwhelming response to Dave’s 25 year celebration attested. The impact he’s had on so many people was evident by the countless comments and pictures that were shared.
“I have no regrets!” Dave said about his tenure at the school. “It’s a great ministry and Wycliffe and SIL have also been a great support to me as I teach and support their children.”
Teaching is a wonderful way to touch many lives — perhaps countless more than we could ever even begin to imagine. And for Dave Schutt, it’s been a legacy 25 years in the making.
Learn more about how you can touch lives and make an impact by serving with Wycliffe through teaching.