Students surprise LSUA professor with Zoom message

Published: Dec. 22, 2020 at 4:52 PM CST
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ALEXANDRIA, La. (KALB) - As students finished up their classes at LSUA, one professor received a once in a lifetime gift.

On the last day of Zoom classes, students in Dr. Elizabeth Beard’s English 1001 class decided to do something special for their professor. At the start of class earlier this month, students turned on their video monitor at the exact same time. Each student held up a piece of paper with messages that said things like, ‘We love you, Dr. Beard,’ and ‘We’re thankful for you.’ As you can imagine, the gesture caught the 17-year English professor off guard. Beard says it’s the sweetest thing students have ever done for her and she couldn’t be more thankful.

Oh, guys, I can’t even believe you just did that. Well, there’s an A+ on your final papers. You guys are the sweetest, you just absolutely made my semester, thank you so much.”

Dr. Elizabeth Beard, LSUA Associate Professor of English

The professor calls it a grand gesture in a year unlike any other.

“This has been the wildest ride of a semester that I’ve had in my 17-year career. We had two tornados with building damage and two hurricanes that paused the semester schedule, on top of the pandemic shift to socially distanced learning. So, these students really had to hunker down and persevere,” said Beard.

LSUA freshman Corey Nall orchestrated the whole thing. He says he was scrolling through social media one day when he saw other classes recognizing their professor.

“Every time that I saw it, Dr. Beard was the one that I thought of,” said Nall.

Nall says the semester has been challenging, but Dr. Beard worked with him and his classmates every step of the way, showing compassion and patience.

“She’s more of a mentor to all of us, so she’s a very special lady,” said Nall.

As for Dr. Beard, she says it’s all about investing in students so that they know they can believe in themselves.

“If a faculty member believes in a student, they believe in themselves,” said Beard.

This is especially the case during a semester full of uncertainty.

“This is why I’ve been telling people all semester-long how proud I am of you guys.”

LSUA Associate Professor of English, Dr. Elizabeth Beard

It’s a gesture Beard says she’ll never forget, adding it’s the sweetest thing any of her students have ever done for her.

“I’ll never forget this for sure.”

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