As another school year comes to a close, this episode of the StoryCorps podcast highlights conversations between students and the teachers who impacted their lives.

We start things off with a conversation between Al Siedlecki (Mr. Sie for short), a middle school science teacher, and his former student Dr. Lee Buono. The two came to StoryCorps in 2011 to remember how they reconnected decades after Lee graduated.

Next, two students who were having difficulties at school, and the teachers who helped them through; for Harleé Patrick, it was her third grade teacher Kate Musick. 

And for Jose Catalan, it was his high school teacher Carlos Vicarra. Both pairs sat down for StoryCorps in 2012 to talk about the lessons that extended beyond the classroom.

Our final stories come from a small town in Arkansas, where—for the past five years—seniors at Bentonville West High School have been participating in an ongoing student project: recording conversations with people who have inspired them. Using StoryCorps Connect, Autumn Cook sat down for a virtual interview with her art teacher, Shane Beyer. 

And Cole Phillips, another senior at Bentonville West, who lost his eyesight to a degenerative condition at the beginning of Freshman year, sat down with the person who’s been by his side (quite literally) all throughout high school: Rugenia Keefe.

Top photo: Dr. Lee Buono and Al Siedlecki at their StoryCorps interview in Medford, New Jersey. Photo by Daniel Littlewood for StoryCorps.
Second Photo: Kate Musick and Harleé Patrick at their StoryCorps interview in Hampton, Virginia. Photo by Gaspar Caro for StoryCorps.
Third Photo: Carlos Vizcarra and Jose Catalan at their StoryCorps interview in Los Angeles, California. Photo by Kevin Oliver for StoryCorps. 
Bottom photo: Rugenia Keefe and Cole Phillips at Bentonville West High School. Courtesy of Cole Phillips.

Released on June 23, 2020.