The Finish Line of an Era

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Rachel Ruiz

The Finish Line of an Era

University Academy Charter High School bids farewell to one of its cornerstones.

With only a month left until his departure, Fredric Williams, chemistry teacher and track and field coach of fifteen years, expresses his mixed emotions and reminisces on his most cherished moments throughout the years.

“What I cherished most about teaching changed per era. What I valued the most in the beginning was success in coaching, I cherished my runners, the experience. As I grew older however, I began to fall further in love with the classroom and cherish those who would challenge me intellectually.” Williams said.

Erika Nimbley, Special Education teacher and Intervention and Referral Services coordinator, spoke on Williams’ impact at UACHS and Child Study program, which is a program that reviews students who come to UACHS with cognitive disabilities and helps them receive the help that they need to succeed. Nimbley informs how many may not be aware, that Williams is a huge contributor to the program and was asked to join the child study team because of the need of an academic from general studies with no training.

“We worked together for many summers and truly will miss him. He’s always there to help students and understand those with disabilities. We learned from him just as he learned from us,” Nimbley said.

Williams speaks on what motivated him to embrace teaching. He recalls the fond memories of his starting years and figuring out what he would focus his life on.

“I loved running, coaching, biology, genetics, flying. I found myself a senior in college and had no clue where I wanted to go until someone told me I was very pedantic, meaning someone who loves to teach and help others learn. It’s in your blood, you can’t help it. I realized then I would be able to kill two birds with one stone, take up coaching and teaching,” Williams said.

Students at UACHS are being strongly impacted by Williams’ leave mid school term. Senior and track member, Justin Patron, conveyed Williams as a man who has inspired him and taught him patience inside and out of the classroom.

“Coach taught me how to expand past my limits. In Chemistry, I struggled a lot and Coach was always providing help and motivation,” Patron said.

Senior, Jacob Griffin, has also spoken on upon his first encounter with Williams, as he came to respect him for the length of time he has been in UACHS and all he has done for the school.

“In terms of whether or not if Williams will leave as a legacy or if it’s the end of an era, I believe it to be the end of a legacy. For all that he’s done for the school, the way he works he is an unforgettable man. His sayings will definitely always stay with me… my brains will fall out if I ever forget him,” Griffin said.

Williams fondly recalls all he’s done throughout the past decade and a half at UACHS. Williams expanded the school’s athletic department when he created the track team.  He proudly recalls those that won and had given the school an athletic title.

 “I am proudest of building a track and cross country team here and by the second year we had an individual championship. Angelo Volaz, Chad Amavar, Teddy Simon all scored or won at state championships within the first two years. I cherish Benny Sangelton who won state championships for cross country and track, he was our first team all state runner,” Williams said.

Senior and Track runner,  Diego Candelario, emotionally recollects the inspiration he has obtained from Williams as well as moral support. He speaks of how difficult it is to see his Coach of the past three years leave and the impact that will forever stay with him thanks to Williams.

“Coach helped me realize that you don’t need to be blood to be family. He has been one of my biggest supporters and has been there in times of personal hardships. There is no way for me to ever properly repay him,” Candelario Said.

Williams’ impact on UACHS is an unforgettable one as is his contribution to the advancement of the school. From the UACHS family to him, we extend a huge thanks as he leaves us in pursuit of his retirement.


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The Finish Line of an Era