2023 WBLAE Teacher of the Year
Social Studies and AVID Teacher Mark Domschot was recently named the White Bear Lake Area Educators (MN) 2023 Teacher of the Year. Mark also leads the annual WBL Girls Basketball & Hockey – H2O for Life fundraiser. As part of the TOY Award and Celebration Event, his amazing colleague, Hannah, introduced him, sharing the following speech:
Mark Domschot is hard to put into words. If you have had the honor of knowing him, you may say he is intense and focused, especially if you have been coached by him as a hockey or football player or seen him in action. You may say he is cool, calm, collected, if you’ve ever been in an early morning staff meeting together, when he usually rolls in, coffee in hand, after having an early morning workout at Lifetime. You may say he is devoted and diligent- if you have seen him staying after hours to recreate lessons that captivate and engage his students or coming to school, even during distance learning to be productive. All of this and more, can be said about Mark, but what it really boils down to is that through and through, Mark is a BEAR. I am using BEAR as an acronym, of course, because Mark has helped me to infuse AVID into just about everything I create nowadays.
Mark is Brave. I have never met a teacher so experienced, with so much knowledge, and still demonstrating such a willingness and humility to learn. Creating and teaching a brand new class of Ethnic Studies as a 20-year teacher shows his courage to risk and try something new when it’s what is best for all of our kids.
Mark is Energetic. Every single morning he comes down into our office ready for coffee, with enough pep in his step to make me think he’s already had 3. He brings energy, excitement, and creativity to our team every day. It amazes me how he never seems to run out of energy for loving his students well and encouraging them with “pitter patter, let’s get at er”.
Mark Advocates passionately for his students. He goes out of his way to set and hold high expectations for his students. He shows up. He will go out of his way to be a support, attending athletic events, Black Student Union Showcases, Speech Team banquets, Saturday track meets, even coming in to spend time with kids during summer school.
Mark is Real. In Mark’s classes, students come to know him as a real person- a dad, a coach, a brother, a person in their life who they can trust and who cares about them. I cannot thank Mark enough for the support he has been for me personally and professionally, especially as an educator who began a career during Covid, developing an entirely new class and curriculum, and through the ups and downs of life outside of teaching. You truly embody what if means to be a BEAR- Brave, Energetic, an Advocate and Real.