I thought I was a Loser

I thought I was a loser.

I dropped out of high school in my senior year in 1982 and worked construction for years in Alphabet City renovating apartments for people who lived in a world I only dreamed about.

In 1988 I moved back in with parents in the Bronx at the age of twenty five to try to make something of myself. I made it through undergrad in about three years because of the support and help and excellence of the people who work at Lehman.

The people in financial aid made sure I had the money to go. They were patient and kind.

The admin assistants like Eileen in LSP and Stella Americo in Art made sure I knew what I was doing and even helped me figure out my schedule.

The professors at Lehman took the time to really see who I was and gave me guidance beyond what I expected. For example, some took the time to read and comment thoughtfully on a series of short stories I wrote.

Thank you for that!

Gary Schwartz and Charles Beye inspired me to study the classics. I still have those textbooks twenty years later. They took me out for lunch, sat with me on the quad and taught me things that I never knew existed, including a new way to frame what I knew.

Herbert Broderick inspired me to study Art History and challenged me to become a better scholar than I had thought possible. He encouraged me to go to graduate school, wrote me letters of recommendation, talked with me while we rode the 4 Train together.

Professors Dubler and Virginia Scott taught me how to express my ideas in writing.

Professor Ackerman taught me how to write a research paper by allowing me to attend a graduate level seminar.

I am now a professor and I owe it all to Lehman. I would not have gotten a better education at Harvard I would have been lost and you guys pulled me out of my cave. You cared about me. I’m trying to pass that on now. I am a professor at a community college in California who everyday tries to give back what Lehman gave me.

I never can but I will try.

First Name: Kenney
Last Name: Mencher

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