I want to teach elementary school

by Mordecai Goldstein

Dear Mr. Nelson,

I have just received my AA transfer degree from Edmonds Community College in the state of Washington (3.56 GPA) and on the 19th of this month I'll be starting on a degree in elementary education at Western Washington University's Woodring College of Education.

I read the CNN article that described your organization "Menteach" and thought I'd write you to find out if there is some help available by way of financial assistance to help me pay for this course. I'll be receiving some financial aid through the normal channels, but not enough.

Also, I'd like to invite you to read my student profiles

[MenTeach: that was posted to the community college website - SEE BELOW].

Very truly yours,

Mordecai Goldstein

"I do not want my children to be better educated than I am,” he jokes. In truth, Goldstein’s life has provided a great deal of education. He has lived in four countries and speaks three languages in addition to his native Hebrew. He studied court reporting and made a career as a legal secretary. He ran businesses in medical -transcription and advertising.

His experience includes editing screenplays and working as a scribe restoring ancient Hebrew parchment scrolls. A college degree, however, was part of Goldstein’s original plan. Thirty-seven years earlier, his plans to attend Brown University on a soccer scholarship were derailed when he broke his foot in a work-related injury. Then he attended another college, but did not complete a degree. He was not yet competent in English and, at the time, frankly, was occupied by some less academic pursuits. “I was more interested in girls,” he admits.

At age 52 though, Goldstein was ready and he felt there was more he could contribute by earning a college degree. He found the opportunity he was looking for at Edmonds Community College and now thrived in the academic environment.

“I really appreciated that the college provided a total experience and did a good job of meeting the needs of the individual,” he said. “I used the tutorial, advising, career and counseling centers.”

Goldstein also received a scholarship from the Edmonds Community College Foundation and published an illustration and a short story in the college’s award-winning art and literary magazine, Between the Lines 2004.

Now he will go to Western Washington University for his bachelor’s degree and to earn his teaching certification.