Friend and Teacher: One Student’s Reflection of Dr. Scott
Scott Johnson, Ph.D., associate communication professor, passed away on January 3, 2011 from complications with cancer. He was 54-years-old.
Over the course of my experience here at Bethel, I have been blessed to have had three classes with Dr. Scott Johnson. I feel that I can say that those classes have challenged and impacted my life in so many ways, but I also feel I gained a great friend in Dr. Scott. There wasn’t a day that I wouldn’t walk into class and be greeted with a pleasant warm smile and a friendly “Hello, Olivia!” from Dr. Scott.
I have many fond memories from his classes, but one that stands out was during oral interpretation. During this class we would pick out different readings and interpret and perform them for the class. In this class Dr. Scott would show his true passion for theater and performing by reciting various pieces for us. I chose to perform a section from Dr. Seuss’ “Horton Hears a Who.” This performance was difficult for me because it required me to be a little silly, but Dr. Scott found a way to help me come out of my shell and to bring the performance to life. He assured me that I had the ability and really invested in me doing my best.
Not only did Dr. Scott support me in the classroom, but he supported me in other projects I was working on as well. During my junior year I was preparing for a mission trip to Ireland. I sent support letters out to a few professors and when Dr. Scott responded, he asked one thing of me, and that was to present my intentions for the trip and “persuade” him on why I should be supported for the trip. I was really nervous but Dr. Scott assured me that he already planned to support me; he wanted me to present myself professionally.
Even though Dr. Scott challenged me in and outside the classroom, I feel that I have become more of a critical thinker when it comes to communication and other life issues. I will never forget his passion for teaching and, of course, his warm smile.