September 21, 2013 at 1:37 pm

New Kids On The Block Part 1


This year GSA is welcoming many new teachers and staff to the school. Let’s get acquainted with a couple of these newbies.

Suzzi Nielsen grew up in California where she went to Humboldt State and got her B.S. in Environmental Science. After spending most of her life in California she made her way to Maine and has been living here for the past five years. “I came because of the low population, low crime, and the people. And of course the ocean,” she said, though she does also admit to missing good mexican food. This year Ms. Nielsen is teaching Biology, Chemistry, and Algebra 1. Ms. Nielsen said she prefers teaching math to science and that she’s most interested in the physical sciences. But before her days as a math and science teacher, Suzzi was a certified rocker making her way to lots of rock and metal concerts. “I went to a Godsmack concert once. That gave me a headache.” Her favorite show she’s been to was Nirvana in Oregon. “I listen to alternative rock, metal, jazz, uh, you can put motown on there too,” she added. Ms. Nielsen described herself as an “outdoors” person. She likes to take walks, ride her bike, and swim. She hails from Brooklin, and lives with her two dogs Lundy and Cinny. Her message to students and staff is: “I hope everyone has a terrific year and that it’s challenging and fun.”

After replying to the first question Cory Schildroth, the special education teacher, asked it right back with his pencil ready. “And what’s your name?” writing it on the edge of his calendar workspace. Cory has lived in Maine his whole life. He was born in Portland and previously taught in Brooksville. Now he lives in Blue Hill with his wife, sons, and dog, Moxie. Along with his work at GSA he also coaches basketball and baseball. In his free time he lifts weights, hangs out with his family, and watches sports. Cory is leading the weight lifting activity period this semester. Any favorite books? “I really liked Catcher In The Rye,” he said. “And I like the one where the kids kill each other…”

“There are a lot of those…Hunger Games?”

“That’s the one.”

“Mmmhmmm.” Now for an important and possibly challenging question, be careful how you answer this: What’s your favorite food, man? But he is not phased and answers quickly, “My mother’s shepard’s pie.” A+ brotha. Cory wants to remind people that his door is always open and that anyone can bring work they need help with or just come visit.

Sarah Rizzo is one of the school’s new math teachers. She grew up in New Hampshire, got her B.S. in secondary math at UNH, then got her masters at UMO. Ms. Rizzo teaches trigonometry, AP Statistics, and a couple of algebra classes. “I like problems that make you think,” she said. “Ones you really have to walk away from, then come back to and the light bulb comes on.” Turns out Ms. Rizzo also has a badass sidekick named Lincoln. Her dog, who lives with her parents, lost one of his eyes in a fight with a porcupine. Ms. Rizzo also reported that she loves National Geographic, “I love Nat Geo. I read them front to cover.” Only a true fan calls it ‘Nat Geo.‘  When asked if she has anything to say to the student body she responds with some great advice most likely originally spoken by a hippie: “Life’s a garden, dig it.”

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