May Teacher of the Month: Mrs. Westmeyer

May Teacher of the Month: Mrs. Westmeyer

As she closes out her eleventh and final year at Agnes Irwin, Science Department Chair, Chemistry teacher, Ninth Grade Dean and Advisor Mrs. Westmeyer has much to celebrate.

Mrs. Westmeyer grew up in Cleveland, Ohio and discovered an interest in science in high school. She was skilled in science, and the lack of women in STEM careers motivated her to pursue the subject in college. Mrs. Westmeyer fell in love with chemistry during her junior year of college, when she learned how gemstones got their colors. She received her BA in Science and Chemistry from Case Western Reserve and her MA in Science and Chemistry from the University of Illinois. 

Mrs. Westmeyer remarks that her teachers knew she “was destined to be a teacher.” She had tutored students in high school, and in college she determined that she wanted to be a professor; however, she did not enjoy research as much as teaching, so in grad school, she decided she would become a high school teacher. 

Having attended an all-girls school, Mrs. Westmeyer felt a sense of “coming home” at Agnes Irwin, which made her decision to work here easy. Known for her infamously difficult Chemistry classes, Mrs. Westmeyer  is committed to challenging and supporting her students. She states, “Everyone is good at somethingit just takes longer for some to discover what they’re good at.” She works hard to make her students feel “comfortable asking what they believe to be ‘stupid questions’” when in her view “there are no stupid questions.” She wants her students to make mistakes while she is by their side to “help them get over the hurdle and make them stronger in the long run.”

Mrs. Westmeyer has two sons—a college freshman and a senior in high school—as well as 4 cats and many fish. When she moves back to Ohio, Mrs. Westmeyer wants to continue in education in some capacity. Eventually she hopes to move to non-profit educational work, but for now, she is searching for an adjunct professorship or teaching position. She wants us to know that “it has been an amazing and fun eleven years. [She] will miss all of the students, faculty, and staff because [they] all hold a special place in [her] heart.” We will certainly miss Mrs. Westmeyer too, but we are so happy to have had her for our Science Dept. Chair. We wish her good luck and can’t wait to hear about her future successes.  

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