A helping hand

John Pablo, TSV Staff Writer

They say that behind every strong man is a strong woman. True. But behind every successful person, is a mentor; a parent, a teacher, and perhaps even a dedicated tutor. A tutor who has his heart set on helping a student achieve his or her full potential and conquering whatever the world throws at them. A tutor like this deserves all the pomp and recognition. A tutor like this celebrated a decade’s worth of service here at Skyline College last August.

60 year-old Manny Piex has been helping students here in the district for more than 17 years. He was a tutor coordinator at College of San Mateo for seven years before he was transferred to Skyline College as an instructional aide ten years ago. His motives, though, stays the same.

Piex says, “I like to see everyone I work with succeed.”

Throughout the years, Manny Piex has helped numerous students. His relationship with students has always been that of a mentor and his pupil. His heart for learning is as large as his physique. Standing well above six feet, Piex towers over the Learning Center. His presence is felt when he enters the room. People wave and greet him as he walks through campus, as if a local celebrity is walking through and is mingling with his fans. His love for the Skyline community is uncanny.

“The administration [at Skyline] wants people to succeed and do well.” He says, “There’s emphasis in learning and learning outcomes. We’re concerned about people succeeding and moving on.”

After ten years Piex admits that retirement is very near. Other than helping students accomplish their goals in the classroom he also helps his children score some goals out on the soccer field. He coached his kids’ soccer, basketball, and baseball teams for 13 years but he admits that it was all in support of his children. Piex believes age, disabilities, or any other excuses should not stop a person from succeeding.

“Some people come in with a lot of difficulties in life. Some have broken families, substance problems, even records.” Piex says, “You can’t live in the past. You just gotta do better and show people you care.”