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Marlborough School Student Newspaper
The Student News Site of Marlborough School

The UltraViolet

The Student News Site of Marlborough School

The UltraViolet

History department diaspora

GOODBYE: History instructors, left to right Michael Gwaltney, Martha Schuur ’74, Eryn Hoffman and Andrea Drobnick are departing at the end of the 2010-2011 school year. Photo by Cassidy

Students and faculty are saying goodbye to four instructors in the History and Social Sciences department who won’t be returning for the 2011- 2012 school year: Martha Schuur ’74, Eryn Hoffman, Andrea Drobnick and Michael Gwaltney.

Dean of Faculty Martha Schuur, a second generation Marlborough alumna and mother of three alumnae, has taught in the History and Social Sciences Department for the past eleven years and is known for having created Global Studies, an 8th Grade history class that examines current international issues.

Schuur will begin a job as the Assistant Head of Echo Horizon School in Culver City in the fall.

When asked what she would miss most about Marlborough after she leaves, Schuur said it doesn’t seem like she’s is going away.

“I don’t really feel like I’m leaving… an alumna never leaves. I’m leaving teaching,” she said.

History and Social Sciences instructor Eryn Hoffman currently teaches Global Studies alongside Schuur and will also leave Marlborough at the end of this academic year. Hoffman, who recently received an Ed.D and a Ph.D in History in a combined program at USC, said she is excited to look for a job more in line with her goals, probably in educational administration.

“I’ll miss the girls. I’ll miss seeing my advisory each morning—they are always so happy and cheery, and it’s a great way to start every day.” Hoffman said, smiling.

History and Social Sciences instructor Andrea Drobnick is moving to Troy, New York, where she and her husband Ryan have both received jobs at Emma Willard School. Drobnick will be working to redesign the history curriculum there, and her husband will teach math. In an e-mail sent out to employees, Head of School Barbara Wagner said that the Drobnicks look forward to the cross country move.

“Andrea and Ryan are excited about their new opportunities including the physical proximity to extended family and getting their son, Eli, on skis next winter,” Wagner said.

History and Social Sciences instructor Michael Gwaltney taught at Chaminade College Preparatory School in Chatsworth for ten years prior to coming to Marlborough. Here, he has taught AP United States History, Modern World History, Ethics, Morals and Dilemmas, Ancient Civilizations, and American Political Thought over the course of the past three years. Gwaltney will be moving to Portland, Oregon to teach at the Oregon Episcopal School.

Gwaltney said he would like to stay in touch.

“I’ll miss the people: colleagues and students,” he said.

Gwaltney will remain an instructor at the Online School for Girls, a digital community that links all girls schools around the country and allows students to take courses not traditionally offered at their own schools. Gwaltney said he looks forward to virtually teaching from his new school in Portland.

Assistant Head of School Laura Hotchkiss said the departure of four teachers in the same department in the same year is unfortunate but coincidental.

“No one can predict when different life experiences are going to hit. I would hope that anyone leaving is doing so with a positive experience,” Hotchkiss said.

Some students said they are disappointed to see their history teachers leave.

“I have Mrs. Schuur now and it’s sad that she’s leaving,” Emma ’15 said. “Mrs. Drobnick was my debate coach, too. She was more than my teacher; she was my friend,” she said.

Hotchkiss and Head of the History and Social Sciences Department Catherine Atwell are hard at work to find replacements for these four teachers, but as of now only one, Michael Rindge from San Francisco, has been hired.

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