As we begin our new academic year, we welcome many new staff members. The Woodstocker caught up with some of them to chronicle the first chapter of their adventures.
Where are you coming from?
I am originally from California. I lived there for 25 years. My first job was to sell ice cream cones in an amusement park named Boardwalk. I went to college there. My first college was the California college of arts and crafts. I later graduated from the University of California in Santa Cruz.
When did you decide to become a teacher?
Out of college, I started working with daycares. I started working with young people which I found to be very rewarding. When I was 28 I decided that I wanted to bring together my passion for art and teaching and become an art teacher.
What subject do you teach?
I teach all kinds of art. Although my strength is drawing and it when I am drawing that I am the most passionate. At my last school, I was helping with baseball and football. I also started playing soccer at my last school. I loved the personal interaction that it involved with both adults and children.
What’s different about Woodstock from the last place you worked at?
The biggest difference is the mountains obviously. My last school was in Dhaka, Bangladesh. I think the Woodstock community itself has so many different qualities that make it unique.
Why did you decide to come to Woodstock?
As my wife and I were growing a family we were wondering what’s out there in the world. I felt like it would be enriching and valuable to raise your kids abroad. We started looking and soon we went to Australia which was basically like a tester for us. We found the whole experience to be enriching and it broadened my perspective. After that, we went to a hiring fair where there was an opening for a job in Bangladesh. Bangladesh seemed like a unique experience. We spent 4 years in Bangladesh, met great people, had an awesome experience. But our purpose as parents was to move our children around the world. So again we went to a hiring fair where we got to know about India. Although Woodstock wasn’t there. So we looked for schools and found Woodstock. They wanted people, so we applied. After a few interviews, we knew we were coming here.
What are your goals for this academic year?
My goal is always to be as balanced as possible in my work, home and personal life. If I am balanced I best serve the school, my family and myself. I also want to reach into the Woodstock community and really want to understand how it works. I am also learning the new cultures like I am playing Goalathon which I am really excited to play in.
Are there any fun facts about you that you’d like to share?
I don’t have a lot of pet peeves except when the family is sitting around and watching tv/ playing board games and someone started fiddling. That really annoys me. A fun fact about me is kind of wacky. My wife and I participated in a tv show in Bangladesh called Itadi. They take foreigners and bring them into the show and make perform the show on Eid. It was really hard because I am not an actor or a performer.
Photo by Knema Gardner
Riya Gupta is a staff reporter
Edited by Nupur Agrawal