"I never thought ..."
So a week after he left the News, Heuser started graduate school at the U-M. "I was in the master of arts with certification program, a one-calendar-year program where you get a master's degree and do your student teaching at the same time. It was extremely intense, and I went full bore working seven days a week until June 2010."
Heuser could go full bore because, in addition to the buyout, he got unemployment compensation, and his wife had a steady job as a state social worker. Plus he got $5,000 to help pay his tuition through the state's No Worker Left Behind program.
"When I finished, I started looking for a teaching job," says Heuser. "There weren't a whole lot of jobs, but my certification in math really helped me. With English or history certification, I wouldn't have had as good a chance." Thanks to his degree in math, he got a couple of job offers. But with his sports connections, he landed a great job.
"I was all set to work at Plymouth-Canton, when at the end of summer a job opened at Dexter High School," Heuser continues. "A lot of the people I'd known through the paper were still active at the schools, and I knew Kit Moran, the principal there, from covering cross-country. A week before school started, I got a job offer and accepted it." He's now teaching math at Dexter High. "I've been there for two years now, and I anticipate staying for a long time."