Launching with Love
The Story of Us
“Wanna copy my homework?” This was the question that would launch 41 years of friendship that is still going strong to this day. I was sitting in Mr. Voris’ 7th grade Pre-Algebra class when I ventured shyly with this odd, random query, turning in my seat and extending a hopeful, tentative hand toward Sandy, the quiet red-haired girl who sat adjacent to me in the first row by the windows (“adjacent” ---a cool word we were learning about angles, in addition to their being “complementary” and “supplementary”!). In my attempt to think of a way to start a conversation, I surprised myself with what actually came out of my mouth. It sounded like my words came from a person separate from me. My somewhat gangly arm extended into the air for what seemed like the most awkward moment in pre-teen history ("tween" was about 2 decades off in the lexicon at this time). The crumpled notebook paper lay curved in my palm and had obviously been jammed in the depths of my Pee-Chee folder.
“No, thanks,” Sandy politely turned me down, her bright blue eyes casting a warm (and bemused?) glance at my scrawled formulas converting fractions to percentages. Sandy’s homework, was, of course, neat and proof-read, and complete and polished before arriving to class.
Several kids in our class would often fall behind and ask me if they could copy my Number Theory homework---and I’d often oblige and help. While it was certainly no “Biff and McFly” situation, I’m sure I acquiesced to maintain some semblance of perceived peace. (I didn’t want to be that kid who hid her answers from others’ views if they strained to copy me during a pop quiz.) In hindsight, I realize that my classmates needed more assistance with their organizational skills than with their academic aptitudes, knowledge that would be quite useful in my future endeavors---in Education and elsewhere. My offer to Sandy was a rather desperate attempt to make friends with this modest and mysterious girl with the freckles who stood out in a sea of squirrely 7th-graders.
There was something honorable about Sandy, and turning down my offer to cheat only proved that my intuition was spot-on. I had never before copied another kid’s math homework nor offered another kid my homework to copy, so the fact that I'd impulsively extended it to Sandy proves that our friendship was meant to be---that 2 “goody two-shoes” (at least at the time!) found one another (hmm…wasn’t that Adam Ant’s debut solo single that following May of 1982?).
This peculiar exchange was the beginning of a golden, lifelong friendship that kicked off many fun-filled afternoons in the local arcade ("The Milky Way"!) attempting to beat the High Score on Ms. Pacman, to supporting one another through life’s significant ups and downs, the twists and turns of their career paths notwithstanding.
When overwhelmed with the rollercoaster of life, Debbie and Sandy have been known to escape to the “Happiest Place on Earth,” the Disneyland that emerged from the once-vast orange groves of Southern California, where they visit their favorite bear, Winnie the Pooh. Those days of merriment traditionally wind down in Pooh Corner, where they nibble away at the chocolate-dipped ear of their hands-down favorite cream-hued sugar cookie, formed in the likeness of the famed Mortimer Mouse, Disneyland’s original ambassador.
Sandy, a natural planner and organizer, honed her business acumen and managerial prowess while working in Financial Services for the past 3 decades. Debbie, innately and relentlessly curious, naturally found herself in the field of Education, when the lure to the San Francisco Bay Area veered (careened?) her into a seemingly different direction into the world of Information Technology. It was there that Debbie found the opportunity of combining her love of learning---and helping others learn--- as she procured herself training to become a Voice Engineer within various industries, i.e., Telecommunications, Financial Services, Government, Healthcare, Retail, and, in her ultimate love, Education---and training others, from entry level to C-level Management, in the process.
Debbie and Sandy soon realized that while they followed seemingly circuitous routes, their mutually empathetic hearts could unite to bring more compassion, light, levity, and kinship to our community, particularly in this time of turmoil and uncertainty. Hence, they bring to you Tutor Doctor East Bay, where lifelong learning and growing hit home, deeply ensconced in the values that they hold dear. In addition to genuinely caring for their students---or rather, because they care, Debbie and Sandy help prepare them for a lifetime of success by instilling the time management, organizational, test-taking, and executive skills necessary to turn challenges into opportunities---all while honing students' unique talents and interests.
We at Tutor Doctor East Bay will not only help our students pass Math, English, SAT/ACT exams, or any foreign language with flying colors but gain the confidence to flourish in any endeavor they take on in life. Have you ever thought about learning to play the trombone or growing a vertical garden? We have tutors for that, too!