Welcome to Hopper Highway

Steve Hopper (Room 58)

... the journey to California began in Mt. Vernon, IL, where I was raised with a sense of fashion (see the visual on the left).   

... Lessons Learned from Memorable High School Moments ... 

1. Words Have Connotations - People Don't Always Appreciate Bad Connotations.  Wasn't able to erase the phrase "Geometry Sucks" off the the board quick enough before Mrs. Hickam entered the room. Soon I found myself before the administration giving the etymology of the word "suck" and feeling mighty uncomfortable. Later, I decided the word "suck" could easily be replaced with "vacuum" ... as in ... "Life can vacuum."

 2.  You Can Run, But You Can't Hide.  Worked as a busboy in a swanky restaurant during my senior year; the boss offered me the chance to work DURING THE SCHOOL DAY, and I accepted. Smiling and greeting the customers as they entered the dining area, I was mortified to see the high school administration and school board parade past me. Lovely.

3.   It's A Thrill To Be Part Of Something Bigger Than Yourself.  Played trombone in the Illinois All-State Orchestra in Chicago and witnessed the dexterity of the incredible string section as we performed Shostakovich's Symphony No. 5 (Finale)

4.  Choices Can Have Negative Consequences.  Ditched Mr. Lindquist's vapid chemistry class 27 times and was so proud of my "B" ... unfortunately, we could only miss 15 days in a given class;  I was awarded a "F" instead.

5.  Even Cranky Staff Members Can Be Stunned At A Student's Success.  Performed the lead role of Harold Hill in The Music Man, enjoying the experience with an amazing cast, crew, and orchestra.  I even got a compliment from our cranky librarian.

Graduated from Murphysboro (IL) High School in 1981 ... "the highway" crisscrossed through the United States, finally ending up in Woodlake ... enjoying life with my wife, Debra (WUHS '83), and my two amazing daughters: Mariah and Kelsey.

... teaching English while making a positive impact on students is my passion ...