SHS teacher returns to his hometown to make a difference

SHS teacher returns to his hometown to make a difference
Posted on 10/01/2016

When Brandon Jerrell graduated from Anderson University, the Scottsburg High School alumnus wanted to return to his hometown and give back to his community.

“Scottsburg is home. I really care about the community in Scottsburg,” Jerrell said. “I want to continue to make a difference.”

This year, Jerrell is making a difference in his hometown by being in the classroom — Jerrell was hired as Scottsburg High School’s new Spanish teacher.

“My passion for Spanish and children is what led me to this,” said Jerrell, who majored in Spanish and Christian ministries at Anderson. “Teaching is a perfect blend of both of my majors.”

At Anderson, Jerrell was part of the Spanish chapel ministry. Each week, Jerrell would help organize the Spanish-only, one-hour service, where attendees would be part of a short, Bible reading, have a time of prayer, and listen to a speaker. At times, Jerrell would be the speaker that week.

“That helped my Spanish along,” Jerrell said. “It’s pretty tough to do [a sermon] in another language.”

Jerrell would also spend time with a local Hispanic congregation near Anderson. There, he connected his lifelong love of playing soccer and his calling to help children.

“We taught the kids soccer,” said Jerrell, who was the captain of the boys soccer team when he was a student at SHS.

Jerrell said there were not as many opportunities for the children to learn to play soccer, so he and other Anderson students helped fill in the gap.

Along with being involved in ministries on and off campus, Jerrell spent one semester in Costa Rica to help strengthen his Spanish-speaking skills and his knowledge of Central American culture. He also spent a little more than a month in Spain, north of Madrid. In Spain, Jerrell stayed with a friend, who was a foreign exchange student that his family hosted when Jerrell was a SHS student.

“I really loved Spanish when I was at Scottsburg,” Jerrell said. “It’s always been interesting to communicate in another language other than English. We were really good friends while he was here.”

Not only is Jerrell is trying to make a difference in the classroom, he is also hoping to make a difference in the swimming pool. Jerrell was named the SHS varsity boys and girls swim coach and the Scottsburg Middle School swim coach. As a student, Jerrell was a four-year member of the SHS swim team.

“As a swimmer, it’s a pretty painful sport,” Jerrell said. “As a coach, I want us to remain competitive [in the conference].”

When Jerrell is not in the classroom or at the pool, he is busy working on developing a card game. The idea for the card game came when he was at his grandmother’s house for Christmas. He convinced his brother, Matthew, who graduated in 2015, to play the strategy, two-player game.

“It’s changed significantly from the first time we played it,” Jerrell said.

Jerrell said he will try to self-produce the game after “quite a bit of testing.”

At Scott County School District 2, Jerrell’s story is our story. Your story matters. You matter.