Blythewood, SC (WLTX) - Go to any Blythewood High School football game, baseball game or any school event for that matter, and you're bound to see one very special woman screaming in the stands: an English teacher named Candy Rowland.
For Rowland, the only thing that trumps teaching is supporting.
"Sometimes in education I think we get caught up in the businesses of playing school," explained Rowland, "that we forget that our number one job is to build character."
Building character is a job she does well by both her teaching skills in the classroom and also her extracurricular support.
"Ms. Rowland is like, one of the biggest cheerleaders that I have!" said student Hassan Belton.
"She's a mom at school," added senior Jalen Williams, "Anytime I need to talk to her I can come to this class. She's like my mother figure away from home."
Both Jalen and Hassan are star athletes on the football field. In fact, next year, Jalen will play ball for the Clemson Tigers; a triumph he doesn't mind sharing credit with Ms. Rowland.
"She's always there for me, not just at the games but in life in general."
Specifically, in 2012, when Jalen lost his father, uncle and grandmother.
"We talked about it and she just helped me through it."
Candy Rowland believes that each student needs to be taught, supported and understood uniquely andfeels that her role goes far beyond teaching curriculum.
"What I teach them academically is not going to have a whole lot of effect if I can't help them learn to cope with things that life throws at you," Rowland shared.
"Professionally I still believe that it's one of the most admirable jobs out there. Personally I think I get way more out if it than I give to the kids."
"Oh Ms. Rowland is the best teacher I've ever had!" Hassan said. "Seeing her just helps me focus because I don't want to let her down."
"I just love Ms. Rowland!" added Jalen. "Without her I have no idea where I would be at this point and time in my life."
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