Where did you grow up?

Charlotte, NC

Where did you go to high school/college and what year(s) did you graduate?

Garinger High School. I graduated in ’87. Then, I spent two years at Chapel Hill (UNC) from ’87-’89 and graduated in ’92 from UF.

What inspired you to be a teacher, and did you always want to be one?

I did not always want to. I wanted to be a print journalist; I was the arts editor at Chapel Hill. I was convinced that’s what I wanted to do. I moved to Florida, started working at a preschool at UF called “Baby Gator,” fell in love with kids and knew in some fashion I would end up (teaching).

What were your favorite activities to do in high school?

Avoid being beat up and doing lots of homework. I fell in love with music and listened to bands no one else in my high school did. I also spent a lot of time hanging out at record stores and going to shows.

How have teenagers changed since when you were in high school? 

I think the biggest change is how they treat grownups. Kids in my high school never treated a teacher badly. It’s not the case anymore.

What were some outfit trends during your high school years?

MTV was a relatively new phenomenon; the whole preppy crowd wore hair bows, white Reboks and tapered jeans. Men wore acid jeans with bleach spilled artfully on them and carefully hand painted leather jackets.

If you could give the teenage version of yourself advice, what would it be?

Don’t always assume you’re smarter and better than people around you because they’re different. Eventually you’ll

English teacher Calvin Dillon wasn't always considering teaching. But once he was exposed to it at a preschool, he knew he would end up teaching.

spend a lot of time in high school, and you’ll actually want to be there.

Did you have a car? If so, what was it?

I had two cars. A ’72 VW Super Beatle which I totaled on the way back from a Duke visit. My insurance got me a new one, but it was never quite the same.

Did you play an instrument?

I played guitar. I still play on Fridays (in class).

Savanna Peterson / Business Manager

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