Doug Williams says he needs three things as a teacher: passion, patience and a lot of coffee.

“You need passion for this job,” Williams said.

Williams teaches language arts at Mears Middle School; a place that feels like coming home. He attended Mears when he was a middle school student, and is able to put himself in his students' shoes.

“I’m very open about this subject with these students,” Williams said. “Growing up language arts was my worst subject, the worst. It just took one teacher, one teacher when I was in high school that turned it around for me and I’ve become very passionate about it.”

Originally a pre-med student, Williams received a Master’s degree in teaching at the University of Alaska Anchorage, and he’s been in the classroom ever since. “I love being in the classroom. I love their energy.”

Williams isn’t afraid to stray from his lesson plan; he goes with the flow depending on how his students are feeling that day or week.

“If I’m seeing them give me some type of negative energy or they’re not feeling their best then it’s time for me to abandon what I had prepared for that day and adapt to their needs,” said Williams “At the end of the day it really is about their needs and how I can meet their needs.”

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