One of the best stories I've heard from a returning student is how they have such a broader perspective now of the world, a completely different idea of what is important. Now, social media posts, what the latest star is wearing, and the latest youtube craze doesn't seem nearly as important. He told me how he actually missed being off the grid and having that peace of mind that comes from taking a break from technology. He was striving to practice the mindset he learned onboard of being truly present.
Teaching at sea is an incredible experience. Your are brought back to the basics of teaching. You have your white board, markers, projector, computer, your mind and hopefully your students' active minds as well. You don't have google to rely upon, or other internet resources. The lack of internet really forces you to be on top of your material, and class preparation. It also encourages creativity as you need to find new ways of adapting lessons and discovering how to best use the resources that the ship offers you.
Our company is unique do to our working environment. We are a small knit community, a faculty of only 8 people, so it is vital that we are patient, kind, and respectful to each other. One moment when I was especially proud of my team was when we needed to develop a new academic schedule a month into the academic year.
Creating schedules onboard is not an easy task as you have to consider day watch, galley, set meal times, etc. The whole team got together, using pipe cleaners, index cards, papers with lists plastered all over the crew mess, and we found a solution to our scheduling problems in record time. I was so proud of the way everyone pitched in to help, sacrificing the little free time they had to help better the community.
One of the biggest factors in being a successful company is acknowledgment and respect. I've seen it so often in education where employees will kill themselves over helping their students, sacrificing so much to provide the best education and experience possible. In so many cases, the employees aren't even looking for monetary compensation, but simply acknowledgment of the work they are doing and respect. Respect always goes a long way.