One Albany teacher is proving it pays to learn math!
Former Albany Middle School Math teacher, Ben Johnson, made a bold promise to one of his classes.
"He challenged us; he's like, so whoever gets a degree in mathematics, I'll give you $100. And at middle school age, you're a teenager, and like, '$100? Ok!' you know?" says student Felicia Griffin, who graduated with a degree in Mathematics from Albany State University in 2010, forcing Johnson to make good on his promise.
"He always did these interactive games and just really got us interested," says Griffin.
"I wanted to teach my kids differently than the way I was taught and I believed in pushing them and making math fun," says Johnson.
It was that enthusiasm that then pushed Griffin into getting her master's degree at Florida State University in Biostatistics. And Johnson was right there to watch her walk across the stage.
"And I just hollered, 'Felicia!' and she turned around and she said, 'Mr. Johnson!' and when she did that, that was all the gratification I needed cause as teachers, this is our paycheck. When we inspire children, that's what we live for.
Johnson surprised Griffin Wednesday with another paycheck for getting her master's in math, but he may have to fork over some more in the near future because Griffin says she's not done yet.
"My current plan is to get my PhD in biostatistics."
And taking a lesson from Johnson, she is also teaching a statistics class at FSU.
"Math, Science, Engineering, technology, that's what's driving today and that's why we want kids more interested in Math, so if I can touch somebody like he touched me, I'll be happy," adds Griffin.