Dear Professor Gattenby,
This is Delora Prange—I took your Outdoor Pursuits and Kines 123 classes last year.
I just wanted to thank you for all your help and teachings throughout your courses. The stress management and self awareness skills you taught me have been invaluable.
This summer I went down to Alabama for bootcamp (Field Training) for the Air Force. Field Training is a month long stress management workshop/simulated deployed environment down in Alabama. All cadets who hope to commission as officers need graduate and receive rankings at FT—these rankings affect our ability to qualify for future positions in the Air Force.
Field Training was an extremely stressful environment involving a lot of yelling and long days. My second day there, I thought I couldn’t make it, the pressure and ruthless evaluation seemed to be swallowing me. I knew I couldn’t give up though, I looked at everyone I knew who took obstacles and turned them into challenges and opportunities for development—this gave me inspiration to push through.
I thought about what your class taught me and I took action. Every night I journaled the positives of the day and interesting things I learned, as well as did deep breathing and thought about my emotions—I didn’t suppress them.
Professor Gattenby, these small changes made such an impact on me and my performance. By the fourth day, my normally positive attitude re-emerged, life seemed far less miserable, and my performance improved.
At the end of it all, I ranked #1 in my class and learned so much about myself and stress management.
This semester I am in charge of recruiting and retention at our ROTC program and I am organizing a stress management workshop for the underclassmen; I hope I can give other people the same opportunity to learn about themselves as you did for me.
Your lessons carried me through challenges and taught me how I can take charge of situations despite negative circumstances, thank you again.
I hope you have a great rest of your semester and please keep doing what you are doing.
DELORA R. PRANGE, C/1st Lt, AFROTC
Recruiting and Retention Officer, Detachment 925
University of Wisconsin-Madison