Tracy Kempsell, the new DHS choir teacher, may be a new face to some people but she has been teaching for 18 years at MPS. Kempsell has taught at all levels of education including Jefferson Middle School, Woodcrest Elementary School and previously at DHS. Kempsell used to teach Humanities at DHS when the course was offered. Kempsell knows the majority of her choir class from previous schools, which makes her love her choir even more because she knows what they are capable of already.
“[My favorite class] would have to be choir, and my all-time favorite teacher was a choir teacher,” Kempsell said.
Kempsell and her old choir teacher remain close friends, and she also thinks of him as a mentor. Her goal for this year is for her class to become a close knit group of musicians.
Hilarie Huschke, the new DHS senior English teacher, is probably a new face to DHS students. Huschke used to teach at Northeast Middle School, spent a semester at Central Middle School and has substitute taught for a few years for the MPS and Meridian School districts. Huschke used to coach volleyball; it was then that she decided to become a teacher. Huschke became an English teacher because of her love of reading and working with kids.
“All I want is for my students to be happy, successful and to graduate,” Huschke said.
Elizabeth Christiansen is a new DHS Biology teacher, but this isn’t her first time teaching. Christiansen taught for 14 years at Northeast Middle School. Christiansen really enjoyed math and science classes during high school. After graduating college, Christiansen worked as a chemist for five years. However, she returned to school to earn a teaching degree and pursue her true passion.
“In the end I like working with people,” Christiansen said. “I like having the opportunity, mostly to work in small groups with students and help them understand ideas. [I hope] that they enjoy science, that we do enough good solid scientific activities that are interesting to them.”
Erica Barnes is a new DHS Spanish teacher. Barnes previously worked at Saginaw Valley State University for about two and a half years as an academic advisor. While advising teachers, Barnes decided that she really wanted to be a teacher. Barnes already had a degree in social work and Spanish, but she went back to school to get a degree in teaching. Barnes began substitute teaching in Bay City and Saginaw while getting her degree in teaching.
“There is a steep learning curve [in teaching], so at first it’s really really hard and you put a ton of hours into it, but the students really make it worth it,” Barnes said.
Barnes’ goal for her students this year is to actually use the language that they learn, to be able to hold conversations in Spanish and to even read a child’s book and be able to understand it.
Anthony Bauer is a new DHS Geoscience teacher this year. This isn’t his first time teaching, as he taught for 18 years at Northeast Middle School, spent a semester at Midland High School and substitute taught for a year for MPS. Bauer had a love for the sciences and Latin during high school, so it was a no-brainer that he would teach a science class.
“[I decided to teach] to help people broaden their understanding of the world around them and to use that new understanding to make their life better,” Bauer said.
Nathan Adolphson is the new Beginning Art teacher at DHS. Adolphson previously taught at Central Middle School, Carpenter Elementary School and Siebert Elementary School. Although Adolphson doesn’t have a preferred age level to teach, he does love the maturity that comes along with teaching at the high school level. Art was Adolphson’s favorite high school and college class. Adolphson was getting a degree in fine arts when he decided to add on a teaching degree. Adolphson just wanted to pass on his knowledge of the arts on to students, so he decided to become a teacher.
“Goals for beginning artists would be to gain a level of confidence and satisfactory to some area of art, whether it be 2D or 3D painting or drawing and to build a foundation of knowledge and understanding skill within a beginning artist,” Adolphson said.