College professors teach high school students

Madison Ritz, Blue M Student Life Editor

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This year’s automotive technology students are having a different experience than the past years, due to a change of instructors that has brought two professors from Manhattan Area Technical College to also teach at Manhattan High this year.  

Alex Anderson and Jeff Pishny are both currently working at MATC and MHS this year, offering automotive classes here during the first two hours and last two hours of the school day.

“It was an opportunity that was handed that was just handed to us,” Pishny said. “I really enjoyed what I do with the college students and things of that nature. But getting started in [teaching at the high school], it’s really an enjoyable position to be in.”

These two teachers work out their schedules between the both of them. They have two different styles of days — a block day and regular seven-period day. Working at both the college and our high school complicates their schedules since MATC does work on a seven-period day. 

“It’s very difficult to find teachers to teach things like industrial technology and automotive,” Career Technical Education Coordinator Chris Holborn said. “It was brought about before I came. That’s what Manhattan Area Technical College could have their teachers just come and teach sections here, because they’re already teaching at both places and that way we could get shops [Automotive Service Excellence] certified. And it basically be the same program so if they took courses from their highly qualified educators, they could just move over to MATC and finish off that program of study.”

Unlike high school transcripts, students enrolled in the MATC automotive courses don’t use Infinite Campus to check their grade. Instead they would have to log into MATC’s grade system instead. Students will receive a dual credit on their high school transcript. 

“Specifically with MATC, I feel like I’m getting a better education, because these guys are teaching college kids,” junior Wyatt Hummel said. “And [Pishney]’s got years and years of experience teaching, but also running your own businesses or industries. I think it’s a good insight into what the industry is actually like beyond just teaching.”

These MATC classes are aimed at sophomore to seniors who might go to MATC and finish their automotive courses while at the high school early on, since it’s the same course and taught by the same teachers, but in the high school instead.

“I like [having a college professor teach high school but at college level] because he talks to me like I’m an adult and makes me feel like I’m a part of his actual college class,” Hummel said. “I like that because most of my other teachers say like teaching the whole classes as a class, so I like more individualistic approach, where it’s like he’s teaching the class, but he’s also teaching you.”