Words: Xander Mauer
Rebecca Vanover is the newest addition to the Centennial High School music department. She has taken over teacher choir and singing-related extracurricular activities now that Jessica Cummmings has left. She was kind enough to take time out of her busy schedule to answer some questions to help students and fellow staff get to know her better.
What school did you teach at before CHS?
I taught at Veterans Elementary School right before coming here—just down the street!
How long have you been a teacher?
I’ve been teaching for 3 years.
What do you think of CHS so far?
I think it’s a lovely place to be! I’m really enjoying my students’ talents, and the staff have been especially welcoming to me as a new face.
Do you have any goals for CHS?
I think this community is more than capable of producing a 4th choir during the school day! I could easily see there being another, and I will continue to build up our students in order to bring that possibility closer to us for future years.
How does it feel to be replacing Mrs. Cummings?
Mrs. Cummings has been a dear colleague since I began working in the county, and I remember when she started at CHS! It was thrilling to watch her accomplish and build this program to where it is now, and taking the reins from her is an honor. Plus, we have the same birthday.
How have you been adjusting to CHS?
The early wake-up is taking some time…Starbucks is to be praised for their extra shots of espresso in my morning coffee! I’m very happy here though—that alone makes the transition easier, despite the challenges of a new job and a new place.
Where did you go to college?
University of Maryland, College Park—GO TERPS!
What is a unique trait of yours?
I’m OBSESSED with the Olympics…anything and everything. I absolutely love them.
What is your teaching style?
This is difficult to articulate…but I’ll put it this way. I’m the same person in front of my students as I am when I’m not. I am unapologetically passionate about making music on the highest level, 24/7.
What is your favorite thing about CHS so far?
That’s easy: my department! I love my colleagues.
Any advice for your students?
I want my students to know how much of choral singing is a collaborative opportunity. The time we spend together singing and building our sound simultaneously builds a community through the music we perform. It’s a true privilege to be a part of this with you.
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