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Welcome new faculty members - Part 1

posted: Tue, Oct 18th, 2016

Mount Olive Middle School welcomed several new faculty members this year who are brand new to the district. Here's a look at three of them:

Leigh Conklin (language arts) is certainly no stranger to Mount Olive. She completed her student teaching at Mount Olive High School in the fall of 2014. Then, after filling a maternity leave position in Montville during the early part of 2015-2016, she wrapped up the school year as a long-term sub at MOHS. 

Now she's here at MOMS teaching eighth grade language arts. 

"My experience at the middle school so far has been wonderful," Ms. Conklin said. "The school has incredibly supportive and knowledgeable faculty and staff members, and the students are enthusiastic to learn." 

Ms. Conklin attended Rutgers for both her undergraduate and graduate studies, receiving a bachelor's in English and a master's in English Education. 

She coaches the freshmen girls soccer team at MOHS and in her spare time enjoys hiking, camping, and running. A lover of nature and the wonders of the American landscape, Ms. Conklin has a personal goal to visit all of the country's national parks.

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Kayti Hubner (language arts) is in her fifth year of teaching. Prior to coming to MOMS, she taught sixth grade language arts in Parsippany Troy-Hills and Berkeley Heights.

She found her inspiration to become a teacher in a quote that hung in her home while she was growing up: 

I've learned that people will forget what you said, people will forget what you did, but people will never forget how you made them feel. [Maya Angelou] 

"As a teacher, I know that my students may never remember everything that I said or did, but they will always remember the impact I had on them," Ms. Hubner said. "Every day I try to infuse my knowledge of technology and my creative spirit into engaging lessons that foster the growth and development of each individual student."

Ms. Hubner studied literature at Ramapo College, graduating in 2012 with a bachelor's and K-12 teaching certification. She is currently pursuing a master's in school counseling and education psychology at Seton Hall University, and expects to graduate in the summer of 2017. 

She is the founder and director of Cheereography, a cheerleading skill-building organization that offers stunt clinics, summer camps, and routine choreography around the tri-state area. She is also the head coach of the Parsippany Little Vikings competition cheerleading team. 

When she's not teaching, studying, or coaching you can probably find Ms. Hubner singing, songwriting, or hiking – or planning her May, 2017 wedding.

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Steve Thompson (music) found his passion in life during his high school years when he started playing guitar. Now as a music teacher, he wants to inspire his own students to develop a lifelong love of music. 

"Studying guitar completely changed my life," Mr. Thompson said. "I hope I can help students channel their creativity and find their own passion for music and performing."

Among his duties, Mr. Thompson will be teaching and developing the new rock and roll program at MOMS.

"Everyone has been very welcoming and incredibly supportive of our new rock and roll classes and club," he said. "I am so thankful to work with such an amazing group of people." 

Mr. Thompson studied classical guitar at the College of New Jersey; he graduated with a bachelor's in music education and went on to teach general music and chorus in Clinton Township.

He plays guitar in his own rock band, Vintage Feedback, and occasionally plays in the pit orchestra for local theater productions in and around Belvidere where he grew up.

Mount Olive Middle School
160 Wolfe Road Budd Lake, NJ 07828
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Phone: 973.691.4006 Fax: 973.691.4029

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