The holiday season often inspires a love of giving, and a Mt. Vernon High School (MVHS) student took it upon himself to give a teacher something he will never forget: the gift of seeing colors.
Mr. Dennis Mitchel has been teaching biology at MVHS for the past four years. During a lesson about chromosomes and genetics, Mr. Mitchel shared with his students that he has protanopia, a form of colorblindness. As a result of this condition, Mr. Mitchel does not see colors very vibrantly and therefore is not able to hunt as well as he could. He also doesn’t enjoy the simple pleasure of looking at the changing leaves in the fall.
Sophomore David Bundy decided to take it upon himself to invest in a pair of EnChroma colorblind glasses to give to Mr. Mitchel as a gift. EnChroma glasses are engineered to bring vibrant color into the lives of those with colorblindness.
“I love Mr. Mitchel; he’s a great teacher,” David shared. “I think he deserves it.” David went on to describe Mr. Mitchel as “inspiring,” and a “great guy.”
David asked MVHS Principal Greg Roach for permission to raise the money to purchase the glasses, and then proceeded to offer his classmates pledges for donations. The donations then came together and David purchased the glasses for a discounted price of $329.
On Wednesday, December 19th, David presented the glasses to Mr. Mitchel in front of his whole class. Mr. Mitchel was also greeted with balloons and a colorful piece of artwork: a deer drawn by sophomore Sydney Nichols.
“I’m not ugly crying, but I’m crying,” Mr. Mitchel said after putting the glasses on for the very first time. He said that gestures like these remind him of how generous and thoughtful teenagers can be, despite often having a bad reputation.
Mr. Roach expressed extreme pride in the students who contributed to the gift. He said special times like these remind him of how proud he is to be Principal at Mt. Vernon High School.