In his first year as Principal at Alta Vista High School, Bill Pierce met Bob and Lois Adams. As he recalls, tutoring had started, and Bob and Lois pitched the idea of mentoring. “I thought it was an excellent idea,” he said. “Our kids at Alta Vista have so many role models out there, but not a lot of them are positive. To have a group of people with a heart for kids and mentoring skills- that was a perfect match.”
Bill Pierce will retire from Alta Vista in June, but his legacy of sharing his “heart for kids” will live on in MTC’s mentor program at the school. Bill started as a counselor, never intending to be an administrator. “I got hooked on the kids,” he said, so he got the experience he needed to fill the principal position when the time came. He knew being principal at this unique continuation school would keep him close to the kids. “I get to do counseling every day,” he said. “I work with the kids at that level every day.”
He believes that the commitment of the people who come to Alta Vista from MTC is noteworthy— from the staff to the volunteers. He is convinced that there are some young adults out there who are alive today because of the relationships with mentors. There are hundreds more whose mentors either kept them out of trouble, pointed them in a fresh direction, or re-enforced something positive or unique about them. He says, “Students at Alta Vista need somebody on their side- cheering them on. Having somebody there saying, ‘yes you can, yes you can’ when the world is telling them, ‘no you can’t.’”
Bill reflects that MTC has been a part of Alta Vista High School longer than any staff member other than himself. “Alta Vista and the mentor program are joined at the hip. That is not going to change.” After 25 years, he is right. Thanks in large part to Bill Pierce, the mentor program is embedded in the school and viewed as a critical service for students.
From MTC and the hundreds of students and volunteers in our mentor program at Alta Vista over the years, “THANK YOU, Bill Pierce!”