Tim Massé, a teacher/coach is retiring at the end of this month after spending 29 years at George McDougall High School.
Just one year shy of three decades of coaching and teaching in Airdrie, Massé is closing his classroom door one final time on March 31.
Massé's teaching career started in the early 90s after graduating from the University of Calgary. His coaching career started while he was at school.
"I started in Calgary in the early 90s, and taught as a junior high teacher first and then taught at several different high schools in Calgary and then in 1994, I came to George McDougall."
While at George McDougall, Massé taught many different classes, like math, science and biology, but mainly, he taught Phys. Ed, sports medicine, and sports performance classes.
When it comes to coaching, Massé is what you call a jack of all trades, while mainly coaching volleyball, he also coached a few provincial champions in badminton, and track and field. He also coached basketball and helped out where he could in football. According to him, he has coached over 20 championship-winning teams.
"I've coached two badminton provincial champions, and probably five or six track provincial champions."
Not too long ago, Massé was honoured at a school recent pep rally, and for a man who does not like attention, it was something he did not care for.
"It was hell. I'm not a public person. I don't mind coaching or playing in a big game; provincial, final, or national championships, but I don't want to be singled out and honoured, it's really difficult for me. But they wanted to honour me, which I really appreciate, so I said, go for it. When they did those things that they did, it just floored me, it was so thoughtful and so heartfelt."
When talking about his teaching career and getting to know new students, Massé mentioned he uses a trick because he feels every student is unique in their own way.
"I try not to learn the kid's last names for a while, the reason I do that is that every student is unique to me. That uniqueness can be taken away if I associate them with their sister or their brother, or even their parents because I've taught a lot of parents and that I've taught their kids."
Massé explained that he loves learning who the kids are and connecting with them. Seeing what they become in the future is one thing he will miss the most.
Once he retires, he is looking forward to spending time with his wife who is also retiring from teaching in June. Massé has two boys, both now living on their own so he and his wife are what he calls "empty nesters".
"It'll be amazing to get back and spend more time with my wife."
In that free time, Massé hopes to get out and do more activities like riding mountain bikes, playing volleyball, and doing things like that.
"We're going to spend time travelling, we have a couple of trips already in our minds."
Massé mentioned he will miss his colleagues very much and that he does plan on staying in touch with them.
"This is what I've been doing for my entire adult working life, so there's going to be a hole to fill."
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