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Alumna on Campus: Student or Teacher?
mae flato 12 former photo associate
February 3, 2011

Molly Muller ’07, a petite, blonde 21-year-old in a grey Colby sweatshirt, sat comfortably in history teachers Joseph and Julia Lyons’s apartment in McAlister I where she was on check-in duty.

In addition to dorm duty, Ms. Muller helped coach j.v. swimming with Dana Emerson, attended sit-down meals as a table head, and, most importantly, worked as a teaching intern with science teacher Andrew Harcourt in A.P Environmental Studies and sat in with English teacher Suzanne Hannay in her senior English class, “Literature and Culture of the 1950s.”

Ms. Muller is a fourth-year American Studies major and Environmental Education minor at Colby College in Waterville, Maine. Her minor requires her to take a “teaching practicum,” which means working at a school for credit, keeping a journal of her experiences, and posting daily on a Facebook forum along with 30 other students.

“I immediately contacted Ms. Karbon, my advisor, to see if there was an opportunity here for me,” she explained. Soon, Ms. Muller was happily settling into the empty room on JL 1 South.

“I feel like I am walking a strange line between student and faculty resident,” she said. “I am on a hall with juniors and seniors but at the same time I am attending faculty meetings and eating with the faculty at meals.” Ms. Muller joked that she is ambivalent about whether she should be introducing herself as Ms. Muller or Molly.

Ms. Muller, who is admirably driven and confident about a career in teaching, explained, “I have always been lucky to have had lots of amazing and inspiring teachers and have always enjoyed learning and sharing that with others.”

She hopes to teach at a private high school and is seriously considering boarding school. However, she has a flexible attitude and is up for teaching anywhere, from Maine to California.

She also mentioned applying for Teach For America, and added, “At this point, I really just want a job.” She has enjoyed getting to know the young teaching community at Deerfield. “They have really embraced me and made it an easy transition,” she said with a smile.

An avid outdoorswoman, Ms. Muller has always been passionate about protecting and preserving the environment, and took an introductory course in Environmental Science her sophomore year.

Last spring, Ms. Muller led a backpacking trip in Big Bend National Park and studied sustainability in Tasmania, Australia. From Tasmania, Ms. Muller brought the debate of logging old-growth forests in to Mr. Harcourt’s environmental class.