More Teaching Moments Selected Memories of PSU Faculty

The Second Best Student I Have Ever Had

October 1st, 2012 by Heather

David F. Haight History and Philosophy

He enrolled at Plymouth State from 1974 until 1976, having transferred here from another college.  He was the second most inquisitive, excited, and capable student that I have ever had in the nearly half century that I have been teaching.  His name is B. Steven Verney, known as Bruce during the time he was at Plymouth.

As a philosophy major he learned how to meditate, became a certified teacher himself, and married another certified teacher and artist.  They have two sons, one of whom is a Ph.D. candidate in history at UNH, the other a talented artist who studies in Italy and also shows his paintings in Portugal.

Steve eventually became chair of the Board of Selectmen of a town in Massachusetts.  He now lives on Cape Cod where he sails, surfs, and writes.  His book The Best of All Possible Worlds is fiction based on real people and real philosophy, drawn from a paper that he originally wrote in the Great Philosophers Seminar on Leibniz while he was here.  A second book now being written is similar insofar as it is based upon his experiences as a dedicated seeker, student, and teacher.

Who was my best student, you naturally ask?  I married her, and she went on to become a teacher of philosophy and a published writer also.

Here is a question for the reader.  Do you know who said, “It is better to be Socrates dissatisfied than it is to be a pig satisfied?”  What did he mean by that?