Dedicated. Supportive. Patient. Loving. Nurturing. Empowering. These are a small sample of words students used to describe Latin teacher Miss Hayley Sampson, who was honored by the staff of OLu's Excalibur yearbook as the recipient of the 2022 yearbook dedication.
Miss Sampson, a 2002 Orange Lutheran alumna, began teaching English at OLu in 2006. In 2008, she created the school's Latin program, and in 2015, she received the Educator of the Year award from OLu's staff and faculty. She holds a B.A. in Classics from UCI and an M.A. in Theology from Concordia University Irvine.
"She pours herself into her Latin classes and makes her students fall in love with the language and culture," yearbook editor Rylen Schmid told the student body during the dedication reveal in Daily Gathering.
During the dedication reveal, memories and messages of love and appreciation flooded the screens of the Ellwein Center as students and alumni congratulated Miss Sampson via video.
One of Miss Sampson's former students recounted how Miss Sampson supported his family when his dad passed away during his senior year. Whenever the student's younger sister, a freshman, was having a hard day, she was welcome to join her brother in Miss Sampson's class--no questions asked.
"It's that kind of thing you don't forget," he said. "It's that kind of thing that you see and think, 'This is the kind of person I want to be moving forward.'"
Other students had their own stories of when Miss Sampson was forgiving, encouraging, inspiring, and impactful.
"You're an amazing educator, but beyond that, you're so caring towards all of your students," a student said. "You show that by being real in daily lessons, in lunchtime life advice, and Daily Gatherings, and that's something we'll never forget."
Another student shared, "She makes sure every class is fun, enjoyable, and as productive as possible, but most importantly, she's dedicated to making every student feel understood, cared for, and unconditionally loved."
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