Ryan Costello is a sophomore English teacher at Enid High School. In his eight years at EHS, he has changed the lives of countless students and faculty. He has a genuine love for teaching and is passionate about his job.
He did not start out as a teacher, though.
In his early career, Costello was a sports reporter. He soon found out that he enjoyed the aspect of reporting that allowed him to become “invested in kids’ lives: their choices, their grades, their futures and so on,” which led him to pursue teaching. He is confident that he followed the right path when choosing to become an educator.
When asked what he enjoys most about being a teacher, his answer was simple. “Most of it, honestly. I would say the biggest thing is the relationships with students, though.”
He is thankful to have students who he can pour into, but also learn from, daily.
“We can talk about broad, big-kid ideas like what Arthur Miller’s The Crucible can tell us about group-think and manipulation, and we can laugh over shared TikTok videos before class starts all in the same day,” Costello said.
Teaching is not easy. Even Costello admits that “molding a teacher truly takes a village (maybe two).” Being a teacher, he has gained some valuable advice during his career in education, and two in specific have stood out to him.
“First, be enthusiastic, be passionate, and don’t be afraid to be a kid again,” he said. “Students will respond much better to a teacher if they know he or she wants to be there. Secondly — and a bit conversely — challenge them. Just as tough times can make tough people, so too, I think, can challenging reading and complex writing and discussion make a worldly, well-educated person.”
It is teachers like Ryan Costello that promote constant positivity and happiness that leave a student better than they are found.