By Emily Bello ’21
Every year, The Gunnery’s campus is flooded with new students from all over the world, and in this influx we might often lose sight of the new faculty members joining our campus as well. This year at The Gunnery, we have three new teachers on campus: Mrs. Haverstock, Mr. McKhann, and Mr. Castonguay.
Welcoming new faculty members is no small matter: it can change the whole structure of the school. Teachers such as Mr. Small and Mr. Trundy have been a strong foundation for the flow of the school for over 20 years. Members of The Gunnery community speculate how new teachers will build on this foundation. So, with this in mind, The Highlander Newspaper asked all three of the new faculty members four questions to introduce themselves to the school:
Why did you choose The Gunnery?
What kind of impact do you wish to have on the community?
Can you describe your teaching style?
Can you give us a fun fact about yourself?
Find their answers below:
Why The Gunnery: “I Grew up in Litchfield and knew The Gunnery’s reputation. I fell in love with the campus when I visited and when I was looking at schools, The Gunnery offered the IDEAS program and having been an engineer for over 20 years, I thought I could add value being the director of the IDEAS lab.”
Impact: “I hope that the community will see more and more of our environment through the lens of engineering”
Teaching Style: “My students say I’m entertaining, I think of teaching as a conversation amongst students and faculty with the opportunity for all of us to learn everyday.”
Fun Fact: “I participate and finish marathons for cancer research and I also play the piano!”
Why The Gunnery: “I choose The Gunnery because it was the right fit. It was the right fit from the standpoint of the role that I was going to be able to play. I was very excited to be the new ski coach, to get back into the classroom teaching and to bring my knowledge in sports performance to the athletes here. It is also the right fit in terms of the focus on character education, which I believe is the most important thing that a boarding school can provide. And it doesn’t hurt that it is so beautiful here!”
Impact: “I hope that I can be a positive contributor to the community. I bring a diverse background in education, coaching and in the financial arena, so I hope to be able to help cultivate skills and attitudes that can help students find success and satisfaction in a wide variety of venues.”
Teaching Style: “My teaching style is focused on the process of getting better at the basic skills that are applicable in school and in life. This is mostly through the cultivation of good habits, good movement, and good communication and critical thinking.”
Fun Fact: “I have lived in all four US time zones, traveled through all 48 contiguous states, and can also ride a unicycle”
Why The Gunnery: “Community, the school’s desire to incorporate a climate shift towards the arts with a catalyst that is the new Arts & Community Center, location, and family environment and local schools (I have two daughters, Siena (10) and Summer (7); my wife’s name is Melissa)”
Impact: “I hope to be a part of the stewardship to a successfully genuine and authentic climate shift towards the Arts here at The Gunnery. This includes enhancements and new course offerings in a comprehensive Music, Drama, Dance, and possible TV/Video/Film curriculum, as well as nurturing our robust Visual Arts and Photography program.”
Teaching Style: “Although on the surface I teach music in all different genres, I feel, more importantly, that I teach life skills, leadership and character development through the vehicle of music.”
Fun Fact: “I was the first Christian to teach at an orthodox Jewish school, called Landow Yeshiva, in South Beach (Miami, FL); and I didn’t teach music! I taught algebra to 8th grade boys and girls (on separate floors of the school as they were not allowed to be on the same floor) and secular studies (all subjects besides religion) to 5th grade boys. This is how I fell in love with teaching! That was over 26 years ago!”
The Gunnery is extremely excited to have new staff members and we look forward to watching the progression of our arts, academics and sports programs through their extensive qualifications and abilities.”