Teacher Spotlight: Mike Pecherek

Lillian Moskalewicz, IV Leader Staff

By Lillian Moskalewicz
IV Leader Staff

Mike Pecherek can be seen around IVCC wearing a shirt and tie with a big smile on his face. Here at IVCC, Mike teaches Music Appreciation and Music Theory.
Mike’s passion for music can be seen through his teaching and the playing of his cello. We are honored to have a teacher like Mike on campus because of his love for his students, music, and field of study.
Where did you go to college and what did you study?
I went to NIU in DeKalb because of the cello teacher there. I earned degrees in music education, cello performance, and orchestral conducting.
What inspired you to become a teacher and teach in your current subject?
I was inspired to teach from my own excellent music teachers. By the time I was sixteen, I knew that this is what I wanted to do.
What is your favorite thing to do?
Well, besides my family and my musical career, my favorite hobbies are hiking, biking, reading, and traveling.
Who is your biggest inspiration?
My Catholic faith.
What is your personal philosophy?
It’s quite simple really. I have a very strong concept of who I am today and who my perfect ideal self could be tomorrow.
I know exactly who I would be if I were the perfect husband, perfect brother, perfect son, perfect musician, perfect teacher, perfect friend etc., and I try very hard every day to move closer to my ideal self.
What does true leadership mean to you?
All positive change begins with oneself, so good leadership is leading by example. It means knowing the difference between objective truth and relative truth, it means knowing the difference between right and wrong, and above all, it means having the courage and doing what’s right regardless of the circumstances.
What advice do you have for college students?
Work hard, and then have fun…in that order!
Tell us something that might surprise us about you.
I studied Japanese Shitō-ryū Karate for 22 years. I was Nidan (2nd degree black belt) when I retired from tournament competition.
What is your favorite thing about working at IVCC?
Working with all of my interesting and ambitious music students. I love helping them learn and progress and navigate through the complex world of classical music. But, I also receive so much from them, because they share unsparingly their lives and their many talents with me.