With the state of the country right now, we all need to hear inspiring stories. Fortunately, there are plenty of them to go around. Instead of focusing on all the bad, a lot of people are now posting about people and situations that have inspired them.
An everyday bus driver
One such story involves a man named Clayton Ward. As a native of Tennessee, his family owned and operated a school bus company. But after heading to the state of Massachusetts, and with knowledge of the bus system, he became a driver for the City of Framingham.
Just doing his job
Every day, Clayton would make sure that kids got to school and then back home safely. He took immense pride in his job, which he did incredibly well. But something would happen that he least expected.
As Clayton worked, something came over him. Watching the kids get on and off the bus each day began tugging at his heart. He wanted to go back to school to earn a college degree. And they gave him the push he needed.
This man explained, “I really enjoy working with kids, especially the high school students, and during the bus routes, we would chat about their classes. As a history buff, I would share lessons that I learned in school and we talked a lot about academics.”
The more they spoke the more he listened
Clayton went on to say that after talking several times with the students who rode his bus, they began telling him they wished he was their teacher. In his mind, it was because he was introducing them to things in a unique way. But those words of encouragement never left his mind.
A long-time goal
You see, Clayton had wanted to earn his college degree for quite a long time. But with helping the family business, it just never happened. Now, he saw a window of opportunity. He decided to pursue his dream.
Thanks to the students who inspired him, Clayton enrolled in MassBay Community College in May of last year. Even while taking classes, he continued to work full-time as a bus driver. It didn’t take long for him to land on the Dean’s List. And ultimately, he was accepted into the Phi Theta Kappa National Honor Society.
But working full-time and attending classes wasn’t easy. As Clayton said, “I would drive my route in the morning and afternoon, take a class in between shifts, and take night classes and classes online to complete my degree requirements.”
How did he do it?
He pointed out that he kept the students in mind. They encouraged him and so, he had to make happen. He then quoted a band teacher he had who said,
“Discipline is not doing what you are supposed to be doing when everyone is watching. Discipline is doing what you are supposed to be doing when nobody is watching.”
Ahead of schedule
Usually, it takes two years to earn an Associate’s Degree. But Clayton did it in only one. He then transferred to Framingham State University to work on his bachelor’s degree in Secondary Education.
This bus driver will be recognized for multiple achievements. Not only did he carry a 4.0 GPA, but he’ll also receive an award for Highest Honors, as well as the All-College and All-Divisional awards in both Social Sciences and Humanities for maintaining the highest GPA in the university’s Liberal Arts Program.
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