Tom Hanks Fondly Remembers Chabot College

He Op Eds as gracefully as he acts

It’s not nearly as dramatic as the time Tom Hanks outed his Oakland high school drama teacher from the Philadelphia Best Actor stage.

Still, the two-time Oscar winner’s New York Times Op Ed about the lasting value of a community college education is well worth reading. Mainly because it reminds just how effortlessly this guy can spin a tale.

Hanks comically remembers the flight-attendant-slash-fellow-student who gave him rides to class one week. He also outlines, in the shadow of President Obama’s proposal for two free community college years, some very specific examples of how he applied what he learned at Chabot College:

I produced the HBO miniseries John Adams with an outline format I learned from a pipe-smoking historian, James Coovelis, whose lectures were riveting. ..

In Herb Kennedy’s Drama in Performance, I read plays like The Hot L Baltimore and Desire Under the Elms then saw their productions. I got to see the plays he taught, through student rush tickets at the American Conservatory Theater in San Francisco and the Berkeley Repertory Theater. Those plays filled my head with expanded dreams. I got an A.

The best part of the NYT Op Ed is how it brings Hanks full print-circle. You see, it was while at Chabot that he first picked up a copy of the Times, becoming quickly frustrated with the paucity of comic strips.

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