I taught an ACA Certification course on the local lake over the weekend. It was actually a Coastal cert course and we were able to simulate ocean conditions with Folsom Lake and lots of boat wake from the unknowingly obliging wave-skiers. This was a special class for me in that the four participants were all friends of mine who I not only paddle with regularly but also folks that I've helped to train and mentor in one way or another since moving up to the area three years ago. It's such a rewarding thing to see paddlers develop over time and become accomplished instructors worthy of becoming Certified.
And that is what the four of them did - get certified. It's unusual to have a whole class pass the class - the standards are high and I couldn't just lower them for my friends. But everyone involved put in a lot of prep work - getting together to practice strokes, writing up lesson plans and giving mock presentations, even recruiting some local paddlers to be students for their practice teaching. That kind of effort put forth by students makes teaching a joy and it also paid off in the final results. So congratulations Neil, Gary, Jeff and Terri!