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Stephanie Tomberlin (Porter Ridge Middle)

How do you show your school spirit? 

I have pride in my job!  I take care of my classroom and the equipment in my classroom.  I have a strong work ethic and show my enjoyment of teaching band to the people around me.  I  participate in “spirit” days/weeks at my school.  I speak highly of Porter Ridge Middle and High Schools. 

What or who inspires you? 

I was inspired to become teacher by previous band directors that I had when I was a student (Mr. Ed Whitener, Ms. Camila Graeber and Mr. Jim Hill), but what inspires me to continue is my love of watching my students grow from 6th graders beginning band students that couldn’t put the instrument together or make a sound to seniors in high school who have become great musicians and responsible young adults.

In which other teacher’s class would you like to enroll for a day? Why?

I want to help other teachers.  I would love to observe other teachers in the same field as me and be able to mentor the younger generation of band directors.  It’s really cool to watch other teachers teach a class…you can gain so much knowledge from observation. 

What is one of your hidden talents?

I don’t know that I have “hidden” talents, but I do enjoy doing things outside of teaching band.  I enjoy line dancing, singing with my Praise team and choir at church and gardening/canning vegetables in the summer. 

If you could pass on any wisdom to your students, what would you share?

“You can be a leader without having a title because your actions speak louder than your words.” The way you carry yourself, the way you act, the choices you make, the way you treat people all comes down to your character and your integrity.  It’s about how you act when you think no one is watching…that defines your character. 

What is a professional motto or quote that you “work” by? 

HUPOMONE - It’s a Greek term meaning Patience with Hope; Endurance; Reaching your breaking point and being able to “cross over” without breaking!

What do you enjoy most about working in UCPS?

I have been teaching in Union County for 29 of my 30 years of teaching.  Union County is forward-thinking and fair to its employees.  

If you had a superpower, what would it be? 

I would love to be invisible for a day.  I would be able to move around and see anything I wanted to see and no one would know I was there.  It would be cool to see how people act when they “think” no one is watching!

List five adjectives that describe your personality.

  • Honest
  • Thoughtful
  • Compassionate
  • Disciplined
  • Motherly

What do you teach and why did you become a teacher?

I am the band director at Porter Ridge Middle School.  Teaching band, in my humble opinion, is one of the coolest jobs…you get to watch the kids “grow up”.  I start them as beginners in 6th grade and have the privilege of teaching them until they graduate high school.  There are very few positions in the teaching field that allow you to be a part of the students' lives for 7 years. I not only see my students grow as musicians, but I also get to help teach them “life lessons” that they can take with them for the rest of their lives.