By Sharon Shatananda
Why did you choose to become a teacher?
I think I always knew that I wanted to become a teacher.I knew when I left high school that it was either going to be English or history. Then I realized that what I had loved about English was the history aspect of it.
If you could choose any job in the world, what would you choose?
Teacher. That’s if I had to have a job. If I didn’t have to have a job, I would just travel the world and enjoy myself, but if I had to have a job I would teach.
You travel a lot — are you planning any trips soon?
Yes! I am always planning! As crazy as it might sound, I set a goal that I wanted to travel every couple of years. If you have that goal, and you do everything you can to accomplish it, then you’re going to do it.
Where have you traveled?
I’ve been to Great Britain, France, Italy, and Hawaii, and I will … be going to Australia.
What was your favorite place to visit?
Rome. Hands-down Rome. And I enjoyed Paris, it would probably be number two, but there’s nothing like walking into the Colosseum. There’s just so much culture. You turn every corner and you’re just in awe. And I’ve been around to different places, but by far, the [Italians had the] best food; there was not a single thing that we had there that I did not enjoy. Even Chinese food!
You’re the girls’ varsity basketball coach. How important do you think playing sports in high school is to the rest of life?
I think it’s really important that students, especially young adults, learn how to cooperate together in a team atmosphere. It’s very different than what we do in school, and I think it’s a really big part of child development.
7. You played in the faculty-student basketball game. What was it like playing against girls that you have coached for so long?
It’s funny because I’m playing, but when Logan Cromwell hits a shot, I get all excited. I mean, they’re my girls. I like that the rest of the school gets into it, too — the whole senior class and the faculty. That doesn’t happen at every school, where [you have those] teachers [who] want to play. Of course it’s a competition, and we want to win, but we do it because we love it, and the kids love it, and it makes our jobs that much better.
Looking at high school life, how has it changed since you were in school?
You still have those classes that you enjoy the most, and the ones that you can’t stand being in, but that’s all part of high school. I went to a smaller high school, so I had some of the same teachers over and over again, I felt like I was able to build a relationship with them. That’s a little bit different now; the faculty is enormous, and you’ve got so many kids that it’s harder to create those relationships.
If you could give one piece of advice to a high school student now, what would it be?
Get as involved as you possibly can. If you want to try out for a school play, do it. If you want to be part of the basketball team, go try out. When you get involved, you create those long-lasting friendships. You learn, you set goals for yourself, [and] you learn about yourself as well as others. You’ve got the opportunities, and those are experiences that you never get back, and you want to enjoy them while you can.