Meet Brittany Spillman, our newest board member!
Thank you to Brittany Spillman for providing this blog post.
My name is Brittany Spillman. I am an Auburn University alumni (2008 and 2009) and I am a teacher at Lee-Scott Academy in Auburn, Alabama. I’ve always been an Auburn fan and I enjoyed watching Philip play for the Tigers. Though I did not know him personally, I felt that he embodied everything it meant to be an Auburn man.
As a teacher, I am always looking for a way to prepare my students for the world outside our school walls. I strive to educate the whole student, mind, body, and soul. I began seeing posts from the Lutzie 43 Foundation about a character development curriculum for coaches and schools. I did not hesitate to order a book as soon as it was available and tried to figure out a way to incorporate it into my curriculum. During the 2016-2017 school year, I was asked to teach an ACT Prep class for juniors. I was given this wonderful opportunity to teach a grade and subject that I do not normally teach and thought this would be a wonderful way to break up our ACT Prep lessons.
I believe in the curriculum and I think it is exactly what high school students need to hear as they begin to head off to college. As a result, and with the support of my administrators, I created a new class for the 2017-2018 school year for seniors based on the curriculum. In the “Character Counts” class, we study the 43 Lessons to Legacy and Safeguarding Your Legacy curriculums, do a book study of Life’s Greatest Lessons: 20 Things that Matter by Hal Urban, and take part in various service opportunities in the community. In past years, we have volunteered weekly at the Exceptional Foundation of East Alabama and created a mentoring program for our elementary students. I chose to supplement the 43 Lessons to Legacy curriculum with these things because I feel like they all tie back to the Lutzie 43 Foundation’s mission, character development curriculum, and the words and actions that Philip embodied. The Lutzenkirchen family has turned the tragedy of losing a son into a positive foundation for change in today’s youth through examples from those who knew and loved Philip the best. These words show what it means to be a great person and inspires students to be, do, and achieve more with the life they have been given.
Since I began teaching the curriculum in 2016, nine Lee-Scott Academy students have received the PFL Scholarship. Coming from a single-parent home, I know how expensive college can be. I also know that education is essential to success. This $4,300 scholarship has the ability to lift a financial burden from these students and their families. The scholarship allows them to reflect on the lessons they learned from the 43 Lessons to Legacy and Safeguarding Your Legacy curriculums, and share how Philip’s legacy has impacted their life. The Lutzie 43 Foundation has made it their mission to spread Philip’s legacy and have greatly made an impact on the students at Lee-Scott Academy and their future. They say that winning the scholarship has given them a platform to share Philip’s story. As a result, they have a responsibility to uphold the foundation’s mission and live like Lutz, love like Lutz, and learn from Lutz.
Over the past few years, my students and I have been able to attend the scholarship recipient dinner at Pursell Farms during the Golf Invitational, volunteer at the Adaptive PE Field Days in Auburn, and participate in the Lutzie 5k during their Auburn Weekend. This year I virtually participated, on Auburn’s campus, in the Lutzie Road Race. There was something special about being able to do that in a place that Philip loved and was a huge part of.
I am excited and humbled to serve as a board member for the Lutzie 43 Foundation. I am excited to get to learn from the experience of the other Lutzie 43 board members. I am passionate about the foundation and its mission to end distracted and impaired driving. My uncle passed away before I was born in a car accident caused by an impaired driver and I saw the effects that an untimely death can cause a family. In my opinion, distracted driving is an epidemic. It’s not only a problem with new drivers but everyone. Everything is at our fingertips these days and people are always connected and as a result, distracted. I think everyone should take the 43 Key Seconds pledge. It could save their life and the lives of those around them. It brings the effects of distracted/impaired driving to the forefront. It’s no longer facts, but a real-life experience to learn from—a cautionary tale from a family that has experienced it firsthand.