In an effort to recognize the importance of teaching, the Rossier School of Education partnered with 2tor, Inc — a company that provides online education along with universities — to create an innovative platform to show appreciation for teachers, using new media.The website, “My Teacher, My Hero,” was launched in conjunction with the Rossier’s new Masters of Arts in Teaching online course, MAT@USC. The website allows people to upload videos of themselves thanking their teachers and emphasizing the importance of the profession.“[It] shows people who are considering becoming teachers how important and impactful the profession is,” said Margo Pensavalle, associate professor of clinical education.The purpose of My Teacher, My Hero is two-fold, said Jeremy Johnson, 2tor chief technology officer. The site is run by MAT@USC and 2tor and is a vehicle to promote the new program and show interested applicants how to receive more information.The site hopes to “help raise the status of teachers in our society” by hosting numerous videos from “leaders in film, entertainment, and politics that are speaking about how their teachers impacted their lives,” Johnson said.Contributors who have already uploaded video to the site include Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa, musician Sean Paul, Craigslist founder Craig Newmark and president of HBO Entertainment Sue Naegle.The creators of My Teacher, My Hero are hoping to get site visits from students, teachers and young children alike. The site will recognize teachers and show that people appreciate what they contribute. Johnson also wants parents and young children who visit the site to see the incredible impact teachers have on society.They want to “show people that being a teacher is a rich [and] rewarding profession” and prospective teachers “should not feel as though others will not respect them,” Johnson said.2tor chose to use video as a mechanism to recognize teachers because “video allows you to touch and feel something a little more acutely and be a little more involved,” according to Johnson.The video submission process is user friendly, and social media tools make it simpler to share video. 2tor set up links to Facebook, Twitter and an email form to “make [uploading a video] easiest as possible.”The onus is on the video submitter to share the video with the public and email it to their teacher, if they so choose, Johnson said.USC students recognized the value of demonstrating appreciation for great teaching, but there were mixed opinions on whether they would actually upload videos.“I’ve had good teachers, but not enough to put a video online,” said Jayson Kellogg, a sophomore majoring in philosophy.Freshman Ann Jankowski, however, said she would upload a video for her favorite teacher in high school that wasn’t liked by many other students.“I adored her and I want to show her that people care and she deserves to be acknowledged,” Jankowski, a theatre major, said.
For those who have the No. 1 USC men’s water polo team (15-0) on upset alert in this Saturday’s 3 p.m. match against No. 6 Stanford (6-4), be forewarned that coach Jovan Vavic has already beaten you to the punch.Holding his weight · Freshman driver Nikola Vavic is only in his first season at USC but has already become a major part of the Trojan offense. – Courtney Sandlin | Daily Trojan Concerned that midterms and 15 consecutive wins to open the season might portend a lackluster effort against the Cardinal, Vavic held a meeting with his young team this week in hopes of maintaining its focus.“[Vavic] warned us of a possible letdown, and we understand the risk, but we’re all as motivated as ever,” redshirt sophomore driver Michael Rosenthal said. “We know that, even though we are the No. 1 team, people still probably don’t give us as much respect as we think we deserve. With that in mind, I think we’ll continue our streak.”Although the Trojans boast a 17-game win streak against the Cardinal entering this Mountain Pacific Sports Federation clash at the Avery Aquatic Complex, Vavic believes Stanford’s physicality and star two-meter players will challenge his team.“I think they’re going to try to set the tempo with lots of physical play early. Because we have a young team, they’ll probably want to see how we’ll respond to a physical type of game,” Vavic said. “We have to be prepared for the two big, strong two-meter men they have, and they have three or four very good outside shooters.”The two-meters to whom Vavic referred are senior Jeffrey Schwimer and junior Peter Sefton, whom Stanford will utilize to run post-ups and distribute the ball to its talented shooters. Another player the Trojans must contain is junior driver Jacob Smith, the Cardinal’s leading scorer with 24 goals on the season.Fortunately for USC, it has prepared for Stanford two weeks in a row, as the Trojans expected to face the Cardinal in the SoCal Tournament on Oct. 3. The Cardinal, however, were upset in the second round by UC Santa Barbara.Game planning and advanced scouting aside, if the Trojans execute their offense and disrupt the Cardinal’s set offensive plays, the team will keep its sterling undefeated record intact. Ultimately, the Trojans’ objective to convert the preseason skeptics — however few remain — will not allow their focus to wander.“With certain inexperienced teams you might have a letdown, with everyone thinking no one can stop us. But we’ve had a chip on our shoulder since the preseason when everyone counted us out,” junior two-meter Matthew Burton said. “We want to go all the way. We want to make sure that every team we play fears us.”