It was Albert Einstein that was quoted saying;
“If you cannot explain it simply, you don’t understand it well enough.”
I was booked to attend a two-day First Aid course here in my home town, Cape Town for the past two days. And at the course – I want to say that – I was fortunate enough to meet a guy who gave meaning to the quote I used to open this post. This man inspired me so much over just two days that I dedicated an entire blog post to him.
Enter, Craig Willemse. Craig is a passionate, [young] confident lecturer at Clinical Dynamics and volunteer for the City of Cape Town’s Metro Ambulance Services. Craig lives in a small West Coast Town, Atlantis and has a simple dream; He just wants to work on the ambulance and when he says it, you can see [no wait] you can actually feel that he means every single one of those words leaving the confines of his well articulated mouth.
I have a tendency to get bogged down heavily on details and if the details aren’t clear at the outset of any task or project, I’d get stuck into research, trying to puzzle the facts together before I will actually get started on the task at hand. I have this inclination to want to be able to at least be able to explain something to myself in a way that I’d be able to make sense of after someone has explained something to me and for this reason, I will ask a lot of questions.
Now, if someone makes the time to make content so simple that I (Elridge) don’t have to get bogged down on the details, I could probably get excited and ace any exam on any topic.
Here’s what’s remarkable about Craig’s style of lecturing. I got this very vivid impression that the content for him is useless unless his student convincingly grasps what he’s trying communicate. And when you get it, he gets passionately excited for you; my gosh, that’s refreshing.
When you have a question, he stops. He comes over to you and listens. He makes sure he understands what you’ve asked, explains and finally confirms that he’s given you an answer which puts your understanding of the point or topic in line with what he aims to have you to take out of it.
He used his personal real-world experiences to help me bring the content home for myself and most importantly, remember it. He stayed away from jargon and if he needed to use jargon, he wouldn’t delay on coming to the fore with a well-thought through explanation. I genuinely felt that he had my (his student’s) interpretation of this information at the top of his priority list.
Not once did I feel that he wanted to show off how much he knows with the examples he made of some interesting experiences he’s had in a variety of situations while in the line of active duty. He stuck to the basics with everything and during the practical and even the theory bits of the training insisted that we ALWAYS do the same. He insisted that it’s easy to become blasé about your responsibility as a ‘first aider’ but that the dignity of our patients and the primary objective of our presence should always overshadow this propensity.
I take my hat off to the person(s) responsible for this man’s training because with every one of his lectures given, he’s passing on the passion. If, this obvious love for what he does [however] stems from pure internal drive and an inherent source, I salute the level of commitment he attaches to his work, it’s deeply inspiring and absolutely amazing. I almost seem to doubt that he’s aware of how much he gives, which is naturally the case with humans who’s literally living their life’s ‘calling.’
I end with another one of my favorite quotes where someone once said;
“If you do the work you love, you’ll never work a day in your life.”
Thanks for being an inspiration Craig! You deserve every bit of success coming your way.
Image of Albert Einstein: http://bit.ly/1u3w7hY | Image of Craig Willemse: Used with Permission