Ajene Watson (right) at the ribbon-cutting ceremony for the Trywa Watson Computer Lab, which is named after his late mother.
Robert Mercedes, the principal of MS 390 in University Heights, has fond memories of math teacher Trywa Watson, who taught at the school until her death in 2007 from Lupus.
Peeking into her classes "you could hear a pin drop," Mercedes said - a sure sign that learning was in progress. She was a "tireless educator" with who "worked with the most difficult kids and turned those kids into stars."
Mercedes was speaking yesterday at a ribbon-cutting for a new computer lab, which is named in Watson's memory. The lab was paid for her son, Ajene Watson, an entrepreneur who runs a financial services company in Manhattan.
All told, the 34-year-old is putting up more than $30,000 for 30 Dell computers, four printers and a SmartBoard.
"Empowering children through education was my mother's mission in life," said Watson, adding that he was "extremely proud" to know that the lab would play a part in continuing that mission.
After the ribbon-cutting, a handful of students gave the new computers a test drive. "They are a great asset to our school." said Nilcia Perez, 14. "He's [Watson] very generous. A lot of people wouldn't do that. I appreciate him for that."
Students Rayfer Carrero, 13, and Nilcia Perez, 14, in the Trywa Watson Computer Lab