Michael is one of the newest members of the Possip team and has already started to play a vital role in helping Possip reach more schools throughout the country. We talked with him recently about his own experience in school growing up, and how he thinks about Possip as a tool to leverage parent and family engagement.
As a high school student himself, Michael went to three different high schools in three years, and graduated a year early. He talks about how his school life was separate from his home life, and the lines of communication didn’t cross much from one to the other. “That was my world and my parents weren’t a part of it. For a parent to even come into a school it was a whole process,” he shared, noting that he doesn’t really remember much communication being sent home from the school or vice versa.
After he graduated, he went to college and then took jobs all over the world — he’s lived everywhere from The Phillipines to Jordan to Germany to the U.S., and most recently has settled down in Hawaii. He’s worked in sales and nonprofits, and is excited to leverage his sales background and passion for Possip’s mission. He loves the idea that Possip can be a tool for “elevating parent’s choices that are often unheard,” noting that much of his work over the years has been devoted to companies, organizations and work that gives “voices to people who have often not had them. That’s been a big part of my career.”
Michael and his wife are expecting their first child later in the year, and this also has him thinking about Possip in a new light. “Thinking about having my kid go off to school, I would love to be able to make my thoughts and praises and feedback heard. And I love the praise portion of it. It’s exhausting for teachers to constantly pour out over and over again and students move up and don’t realize they should thank them until they’re 25,” he says, sharing that he recently went back to write some of his teachers and thank them for their inspiration and devotion when he was a student.
“I always loved writing but hated reading,” he shares, “but I had one teacher who helped inspire me and helped me overcome a lot of the challenges,” and he recently reached out to thank her for her influence.
This is part of the power of Possip as Michael sees it – not only as a way for schools and families to regularly communicate in a way that he didn’t experience in his own education growing up, but also as a way for students and families to share praise with teachers who might not always hear it.