Dear Professor Simon,
If I could say one last thing to you it would be “thank you.” I remember walking into your classroom last semester not knowing what to expect. You greeted us with an enormous amount of love and energy. I have never in my life met someone who just exudes positivity the way that you did. Thank you for bringing love and happiness into the classroom every week. I remember being nervous the first time I had to write something for you. I came into Biola with no confidence in myself and especially not in my writing. I had a bad experience with my English teacher from senior year and he made me believe that there was absolutely nothing special about me or my writing. I remember thinking I was going to have to change my major because I thought I was a terrible writer and no one was ever going to want to hear what I have to say. But you put those thoughts to rest. You gave me my confidence back and I am so grateful that you were able to teach me. I remember you asked to speak to me after class one day and you told me that when I started talking in your class that I had all eyes on me. You told me that I light up the room when I speak and you told me that whenever I said anything you just wanted to hear more. You told me that I should smile more because my smile helps me light up the room. So thank you for giving me my confidence back. Thank you for believing in me. Thank you for putting the shame that I had to rest. I am so thankful that I had the opportunity to sit in your class and learn from you. I only know a few people who loved their job as much as you did. Thank you for caring about us. Thank you for living. Thank you.
– Lailah Walker, Biola journalism student, 2022