By Jeff Harrison
Andrew Thomsen this week started a new career. And welcomed a new class of students at Carl Albert Middle School.
But the first-year teacher is feeling right at home.
About a decade ago, Thomsen sat in those same desks as a student at Carl Albert Middle School. Now he’s living out his dream to be teaching others at his old school.
“This is what I was hoping for in education. I wanted to come back and help in the Midwest City and Carl Albert community,” he said.
Thomsen is teaching geography, current events, advance learning. He’s also coaching cross country and track.
Mid-Del Schools has 67 first-year teachers this year and 160 teachers that are new to the district. The new school year started Friday.
Thomsen developed an interest in education as a high school student. He often helped fellow classmates who were struggling in school.
“When I was a student, I’d see some people get left behind because they were not able to connect to the teacher,” he said. “I enjoyed helping them and get them to a place where they could be successful.”
After initially studying psychology at Oklahoma Baptist University, Thomsen switched to social studies education.
Thomsen was a standout athlete in high school and college. He ran cross country, track and played soccer for the Titans. He continued to run cross country and play soccer in college at Oklahoma Baptist University. He took up coaching this summer at the recommendation of Carl Albert High School coach Bill Case, who coached him in high school.
“He (Case) said that having students in class is great, but having them in sports outside of the curriculum allows you to have a different type of influence. And he wouldn’t trade coaching or teaching.”
Thomsen accepted the challenge and started working with the team early this month. He said he’s still adjusting to coaching but says it’s been worth it.
“It’s been a blast,” Thomsen said about coaching.
And he believes teaching will be as satisfying.
“I’m just looking forward to teaching and making sure students are prepared for the next step in life,” he said.