After junior and senior years of college, I taught at a branch of the Breakthrough Collaborative. (Their website could use a retool, don't judge the quality of their program on the website design.) BT is a program that serves promising but under-resourced middle school students, putting them on the path to college. The program has been named one of Princeton Review's Top Ten Internships for college students (along with the White House and MTV, of all things). It's the experience that led me to teaching.
Today, I went to visitors' day at the program that I taught at. When you are a teacher there, the program revolves so tightly around the kids and their needs and you get to know the kids really well, both the ones you teach directly in your classes and the ones you don't. It's this relationship between students and teachers that makes the program really intense and positive for the students.
When I visited today, I was tackle hugged by a person who was a student in the program when I was a teacher. She's a teacher now, as are at least two others of the students who I taught during those summers. Re-meeting those students and seeing them teach is amazing. They are such amazing young people. Awesome. On a more personal note, the enthusiasm of those students to see me is reassuring, that I did a good job when I worked there, that there's a good reason for me to be a teacher, that I'm capable of doing a good job at my current employer.