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Senior Surprises Former Elementary Teacher

Sher Mu Ku and Brady Starkweather“Oh my gosh, no way! You are so grown up,” said Brady Starkweather in awe, as a former student walked through his classroom door.
Starkweather’s smile lit up the room upon seeing Sher Mu Ku, who is a senior at Northwest High. The surprise meet-up at Forest Station Elementary was the first time the two had seen each other in nearly eight years.
“You made my year,” Starkweather said, holding back emotion. “I am really, really honored that you mentioned my name and remember me.”
Sher Mu Ku met Starkweather when he was a fifth grade teacher at Hartman Elementary. She recalled how he made everyone in the classroom feel like they were part of a family.
“I remember her being somebody who never gave up. She was going to keep working until she got it,” said Starkweather. “Hearing that a student remembers my class being impactful is one of the most rewarding things I’ve heard as a teacher, and it means a lot to me.”

Now, just weeks away from her high school graduation, Sher Mu Ku wanted to reconnect with Starkweather to share how much he impacted her.

“You inspired me to want to inspire others and to build a connection with everyone,” she told him. “And I wanted to do the same as I got older.”

Sher Mu Ku is among our seniors who will be featured in this year’s Omaha Public Schools Portrait of a Graduate video series. Our district highlights students from each high school that exemplify what it means to be a Portrait of a Graduate, which focuses on ensuring each student has the skills to succeed.
Throughout a student’s time in Omaha Public Schools, they learn to become Resilient Achievers, Collaborators, Communicators, Critical Thinkers, Innovators and Civic & Global Contributors.

Sher Mu Ku has been with our district since kindergarten. She attended Franklin Elementary and Hartman Elementary, then Hale Middle. At Northwest High, she’s student body president, secretary for the National Honor Society, a member of the HOSA – Future Health Professionals and captain of the varsity soccer team.

“All my teachers and mentors have helped me along the way,” she said. “I feel like a lot of them have really pushed me to be where I am right now. If it wasn't for them, I wouldn't be where I am right now, and I really thank them for doing all that they can to help me.”

After graduation, Sher Mu Ku plans to study biology at the University of Nebraska Omaha. Her goal is to become a physician’s assistant, where she can use skills she’s learned to help others.

For now, she’s taking time to thank those who supported her along the way, like Starkweather.

“I would like to say thank you for always believing in me and just providing for a better relationship between me and my peers,” she told him. “And allowing us to have great memories that we can always look back on.”

Watch for more Portrait of a Graduate stories in April and May on our district social media pages and Omaha Public Schools YouTube channel


April 2024

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