It isn’t often that a school is fortunate enough to have a modern-day Renaissance man on campus, especially when they have the luck of occupying him for twenty-two years.
At the close of this school year, Fred Anderson, geology, chemistry, and physics teacher at Georgia Cumberland Academy, will be retiring after 43 years of teaching. He has been at GCA for 22 of those years; in addition to GCA he has worked at Sunnydale Academy, Indiana Academy, and Fresno Adventist Academy.
He got his Bachelor’s degree in Biology at Union College with an undergraduate degree in Chemistry and Education, and from there went on to get his Master’s degree at Pacific Union College. He has held other positions such as private tutoring, when he taught adults basic Algebra for the Convalescent Hospital of California.
He is a favorite in physics class for making ice cream and taking the students to Six Flags. His chemistry experiments keep the students in an active learning environment. He educates students in geology and ecology class about the world around them; they have the added benefit of a small class size, so he can give each of them his personal attention and any individualized aid they need.
In addition to teaching geology, chemistry and physics, he enjoys tutoring students during the afternoon in his spacious classroom.
His favorite thing about GCA is that he can devote most of his time to teaching. He doesn’t have any specific plans for retirement. “I just take one day at a time,” he says. When asked if he is excited about retiring he replies, “Yeah; I am.”
He enjoys wildflowers, birds, marine biology, genealogy, and gardening. Many of his students have mixed feelings about his leaving. Of course they are disappointed he is moving on, but wish him the best as he begins a new journey.
Julien Joachim is a senior that works for Mr. Anderson. “I was in chemistry last year,” he says, “and when I was stuck on a problem, Mr. Anderson would always brighten up the situation with his loud chortle.” This is a memory that any of those who have spent time around Mr. Anderson can identify with.
“I’m going to miss him!” says Wally Fox, gym teacher and coach at Georgia Cumberland Academy.
Erica King, a chemistry student, adds, “He should write a book full of all the stories he tells during class!”
As proven by the lives he has touched, Mr. Anderson has been an irreplaceable part of GCA for more than two decades, and the campus will never be the same without him.