By Donna Holman - T & D, Orangeburg, SC, USA

Jacob Smith is a first-year math and science instructor at Carver-Edisto Middle School in Orangeburg Consolidated School District Four in Cope, but he’s no neophyte when it comes to working with male students.

Smith has been working for the past five years as a youth program director at Branchville High School. He has a bachelor’s degree in psychology and a master’s degree in elementary education.

“From coaching experience, I know there are a lot of males who are looking for positive role models in their lives,” Smith said. He added that he is happy to be a positive influence in the lives of his students because when he was a young man, male teachers had an impact on his life and helped shape him into the man he is today.

In his sixth-grade classroom, Smith said he has noticed that many students, especially the boys, seem to be drawn to him.