Vanderbilt University media personnel knew Patrick Raby was the ideal VU student-athlete — Commodores junior starting pitcher with a 3.33 grade point average — to ask for his choice of one grade school teacher who most impacted his life.
This former All-State pitcher and staff ace with the Farragut Admirals, Class of 2015, also made FHS $10,000 richer through an SEC Network program.
It’s no wonder Jean Hill, retired FHS business principles and computer applications teacher, wore VU black and gold last Friday night, Jan. 5.
Asked if he had “’any inspirational teachers’, the first one that came to mind was Mrs. Hill,” Raby said after Hill was honored at FHS as SEC Nation’s Extra Yard For Teachers Vanderbilt representative.
A short ceremony came between Admirals varsity basketball games versus Hardin Valley Academy in Lynn E. Sexton Gymnasium.
As his computer apps teacher his sophomore year and business principles teacher Raby’s freshman year, Hill “obviously did a great job as a teacher, but more importantly helped on the aspect of stuff outside of school — more like helping on every day life,” he said.
For example, “How to treat people, and how like everything will come back around [positive] if you treat people well — kind of like karma,” said Raby, a human organizational development major. “Doing what I can to help people even if I don’t have to do it.
“… I think it’s something people hear about, but to be taught in person, to actually have a lesson on it, helped me gain understanding about it,” he added.
“I was really happy that I did get picked because Mrs. Hill is getting to be acknowledged for what she has done for me and I’m sure what she has done for a lot of other people.”
“I was very honored,” Hill said. “The ultimate reward a teacher can get is to impact a student’s life.
“One of the great privileges is to have a student like Patrick walk into your classroom,” she added. “He is always dependable and very mature. And most importantly, he shows respect — not only to his teachers but his fellow classmates.”
Moreover, “Patrick is a true leader,” said Hill, a teacher at FHS for 14 years [retiring after the 2012-13 school year] who served nine previous years as secretary to then FHS principal Ed Hedgepeth.
“Thanks to our partnership with the College Football Playoff Foundation … we’re giving $10,000 in funding to Farragut High School to help your teachers and students get new materials in the classroom later this season,” an SEC Network press release stated.
One teacher was honored representing each of the 14 SEC schools.
A broadcast segment about Hill’s Extra Yard Award aired during the VU versus Kansas State foootball game on SEC Network Sept. 16.
The Hill-Raby Extra Yard airing came at halftime of a Commodores home football game in September.
Steve Hill, Jean’s husband, attended the Jan. 5 ceremony. They have one son, one daughter and two grandchildren.