Faculty Responsibilities at Wyoming Seminary

About classroom  teaching

As a member of the English faculty at Wyoming Seminary -- a college preparatory day/boarding school in Kingston, Pennsylvania, just northwest of the Poconos -- I taught a variety of courses within the English departmental offerings. Each year, I taught two sections of freshman English along with two other courses.

The freshman program offered a unique experience for an independent school teacher, at least at Wyoming Seminary. The freshmen course was team-taught with three teachers working with six sections over two bells a day. The content was standard first-year high school English and included use of proper grammar, increasing vocabulary, writing critical essays, and reading literature including A Light in the Forest, Native Son, Lord of the Flies, and The Merchant of Venice. The program allowed for a high level of collaboration among the three teachers, and provided us with flexibility to change-up as needed to meet student and class needs.

For two years, I also taught sophomore English, a more traditionally structured year-long English course. While the freshman program encouraged for collaboration and interaction with other teachers, the sophomore program was more of a solo venture. While the content and books was set by the department, there was total freedom, within the limited structure provided, to teach the course as I wanted. The course content built on the freshman program and included more sophistication in analytical and expository writing. The literature in the course was genre-based, covering short and long fiction, drama, and poetry. Among the ten or so texts we used, we taught A Tale of Two Cities and Romeo and Juliet.

Beyond these two lower-level courses, I also taught upper level courses. Wyoming Seminary's English program at the upper level is structured around ten-week English electives. Perhaps electives is not quite the correct term; students took one English term each term; aside from the first term in their junior year, the courses were all developed by individual teachers. The offerings for any given year were decided the previous year in a straw poll conducted by the department. For students not taking the AP-level American Studies program, all juniors completed Style and Structure in the fall term. The primary texts for Style and Structure were Macbeth and Turn of the Screw; one of the primary objectives of the course was to engage the students in literary analysis from a variety of perspectives.

About additional faculty tasks

As a member of the faculty at Wyoming Seminary, additional responsibilities beyond teaching and working in the theatre:

Interscholastic coaching
Coached lacrosse, serving as the head varsity coach for three years; before becoming the head coach, I was the assistant varsity coach & defensive coordinator and the head junior varsity coach. My focus was on sportsmanship and fundamentals. I'd like to say we won every game; we didn't, however. Three seasons as head coach and we accumulated a near 60% winning record. Not the greatest record, but we all had fun and learned a great deal about life and lacrosse. While in graduate school, for three years I coached youth lacrosse with the Springfield Youth Club in northern Virginia

Theatre and other co-curricular work
Served as the faculty advisor to several groups including a chapter of the Irving Society, a creative writing club, and Amnesty International.

Residential life
Lived in a dormitory, serving as the faculty leader for the upper class boys' dormitory. I provided oversight for 60 junior, senior, and post-graduate boys.

Accreditation activities

Served as a the English department's team leader for the school's accreditation self-examination process. As the team leader, I was responsible for facilitating departmental meetings for the self-examination and drafting portions of the self-examination document. In addition, I served as a member of the Middle States visiting team to Oldfield's School in Maryland during their 1993 accreditation visit.