Concord-Carlisle High School
Class of 1999
I grew up in Concord. In high school, I played soccer and lacrosse, and hoped to play one or both when I got to college. I was recruited for both sports, and in the end decided to continue with soccer.
My focus during my college search was on small colleges in New England. I applied to four schools: three in Massachusetts and one in Connecticut. I was accepted by Gordon College and Connecticut College. Money was definitely a concern, and Gordon offered the better financial aid package, but Connecticut College had such a strong academic reputation that I couldn’t pass it up. So The Scholarship Fund of Concord and Carlisle, and in my case specifically the Wells A. Hall Scholarship, really helped me out, especially where I chose the school that offered me less financial aid.
I have an easygoing personality and recognize now that I probably would have been equally happy at many colleges, but I really enjoyed my time at Connecticut College. I played soccer all four years and really fell in love with the study of history. I had spectacular history professors who reminded me of the excellent history teachers I’d had at Concord-Carlisle High School.
Graduating as a history major from a liberal arts college, I didn’t have a solid idea of my career path. Teaching seemed like one good possibility, and I knew I wanted to coach sports at Concord-Carlisle High School. I’d stayed in touch with Coach Pavlik, who was the assistant soccer coach when I was on the team and was the head coach by the time I graduated from college. I’d played goalie, and Coach Pavlik was in need of a goalie coach, so he hired me. The only problem was that it is hard to have a 9-to-5 job along with coaching. Coach Pavlik put me in touch with the Special Education director in Carlisle, who hired me as an aide.
I stayed in that role for three years and discovered the joy of teaching during that time. I definitely had an affinity for Special Education. I went back to school part- time, earning my master’s degree in teaching from Boston University, and then worked at Concord-Carlisle High School as a Special Education tutor. Eventually I became a full-time Special Education teacher at Concord-Carlisle High School, and that’s the role I still hold now. My teaching career is the perfect complement to my coaching, especially now that I’m at the same school for both activities.
Being back at Concord-Carlisle High School is great. I was so happy during my high school years here, and I’m just as happy as an adult. By teaching somewhere else during my first few years of coaching here, I was able to sort of ease into it, but the problem with that was that I missed my soccer players when the season ended. Once the fall was over, I didn’t see them anymore, after seeing them every day during the soccer season. Now that I work here full-time, I can see my team members on a daily basis throughout the school year. I’m now an assistant coach for the boys’ varsity team. It’s a great team to coach, and I have to say, the job is even more fun when you win as much as we do!
Having lived in Concord throughout my entire childhood and teen years, it meant a lot to me to receive a community-supported scholarship. I was very conscious and very appreciative of the fact that some of my tuition came from the townspeople I’d grown up among. It was really an honor to have my community playing an active role in my college experience. By teaching and coaching the students at Concord-Carlisle High School, I hope to give back to the community that gave so much to me.