Where are they now? With Andrea Howard and Heather Dube
By Barb Lewis
Well, it’s January, which for LCA means six sessions of Monday skiing at Cannon! I’m sitting with a cup of hot tea thinking of former ski/riding days with the students at Tenney Mtn. (back in the day!), Ragged Mtn., and now Cannon Mtn. Stay safe, everyone!
This year’s “Where are they now?” blog is highlighting graduates who have returned to the LCS/LCA community in some capacity and who are influencing those around them for Christ. Say hello to “Ms. Howard” and “Mrs. Dube”! They are two of my former students whom I have followed since their graduation in 2007. In some senses they are sisters: they have been best friends since 6th grade when Andrea came (Heather is a “K-12er” like her siblings), they called each other nearly every day while in different colleges, they kept in touch while Andrea was overseas, they both teach at LCA, and for now* they share a duplex.
Let me introduce you to these exceptional educators and their families. Heather Ludwick Dube is the daughter of Cindy and Steve Ludwick. Steve was in the second graduating class at LCA and is a former Board member. Heather’s sister Stacey (‘04) is a physical therapist and mom to a daughter and also to an LCA kindergartener; Her brother Jeremy (‘10) is a Corporal at the Merrimack Correctional Facility, Canine Unit. Heather and her husband Mark, who are both currently working on master’s degrees, are expecting a “Dub-she” in April!
Andrea Howard taught in Austria for six years after graduating from Philadelphia Biblical University (now Cairn University) and St. John’s College. Her sister Leslie (‘10) works with her husband Ethan Goddard (‘10) in an environmentally-conscious solar paneling company in Annapolis. Her older sister Meredith lives and works near the seacoast and has a husband and two sons. *Andrea recently got engaged to longtime popular teacher Mr. Jonathan Watson, which is why she’ll be moving out of the Dubes’ duplex soon!
Heather’s elementary years were filled with fun as well as learning. She recalled having “Mrs. B,” who asked her class whether the playground committee should build an ark or a pirate ship for the new equipment, which was installed that summer! (Students have used it as both over the years!) She also fondly remembers the log cabin, gazebo, and of course the honeycomb.
Although I talked to them separately, their memories of upper school were remarkably alike. They spoke fondly of teachers Ryan Robinson (‘99) and Kristin Simpson (‘99) (now Pelletier), who both returned to LCA for a season as upper school teachers. Ryan’s Christian World View class and Kristin’s literature class challenged their thinking and opened a whole new world of Great Books to the students. They recollected projects like acting out Hamlet in class over a period of weeks. (On a side note: classmate Jake Pelletier loved the name “Ophelia” from the play and said he was going to give his daughter that name someday. A few years ago he did just that!) And even though these were the “pre-Humanities curriculum” years in the upper school, the books these teachers chose were some of the titles today’s students are reading: The Scarlet Letter, Frankenstein, The Best Things in Life, The Crucible, Lord of the Flies (Heather remembers exclaiming, “This is an amazing book!”). The truths of authors like G.K. Chesterton and C.S. Lewis became a part of their own truth. Lewis’s Surprised by Joy particularly struck a chord with Andrea because of some similarities in their lives, and she is a published author today partially due to these influences.
They told me that reading these books together united the class. Along with that benefit, they entered college able to write a research paper (“thanks, Science Fair!”), communicate confidently with teachers one-on-one (dialogue with teachers is still welcomed at LCA), and read and understand difficult texts (“Descartes? – already read him”). Most importantly, LCA prepared them spiritually when the hard questions arose. They both expressed with conviction that LCA gave them a safe place to ask questions, to find common ground, to have an open mind, and then to decide what is important and true. These skills have carried them through their college and professional years. They may be young to some of us, but they both embody Paul’s words in I Timothy 4:12: “Don’t let anyone look down on you because you are young, but set an example for the believers in speech, in conduct, in love, in faith and in purity.”
Both of these teachers have sat where current students are sitting and have even had a few of the same teachers. They have grown into godly young women, rooted and grounded in Christ, which is largely due to LCA’s commitment to work in harmony with students’ homes and churches. I see that same passion in a lot of graduates – another blog coming soon!
Barb Lewis is a monthly contributor to the LCA Blog.
A Brief Bio from Our Author: Teaching is in my blood! My grandmother, great aunt, mother, father, and our two children were or are teachers. I taught my dolls to read and write even before they could walk! As an adult I worked in both public and private schools, with LCA by far the best experience for twenty wonderful years. Our son attended LCA for high school and still keeps in touch with friends from those days. We also have a daughter who lives in Texas and works as executive assistant at her church. Our four grandchildren, in PA and TX, have given me the precious title of “Mimi.” I enjoy reading, keeping up with LCA students, volunteering in the new writing program, walking, boxing in the fantastic Rock Steady Parkinson’s group, and baking. If you are an alum and want to get in touch with me to relate your fabulous story, contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org. Or come on out to the school to see all of the logging, saw-milling, firewood processing, and Timbernook developing my husband is involved in!