This year's retirement party had three guests of honor who have a combined 93 years of teaching experience at Convent & Stuart Hall.
The Flood Mansion reception room was filled with faculty, staff, parents, former students and friends on June 1 for a retirement celebration to honor three longtime faculty members.
Marisa Orso called Convent High School home for 17 years. As a veteran faculty member who also had a daughter graduate from the school, Marisa knew — from her heart — the value of a Sacred Heart education. She spent her career as an anchor of the science department, teaching freshman and upper division courses in Marine Biology and Environmental Science. Many graduates would attribute their love of and confidence in science and their choice of a science major in college to Marisa's teaching and influence. Known for her storytelling approach to teaching, Marisa's class lectures always included great stories.
In her words:
"The retirement party was over-the-top and proved yet again that Convent & Stuart Hall was the best place for me to spend the majority of my career. I will miss everyone a great deal."
The Stuart Hall house band serenades the retirees.
Carol O'Malley, who first started teaching in Austin, Texas before earning credentials in special and gifted education, moved to San Francisco in 1980 and launched a 37-year career at Convent & Stuart Hall. A beloved and acclaimed teacher, Carol was the Learning Center Coordinator for both elementary school divisions until 1990, when she began teaching third grade at Stuart Hall, a position she has held ever since. Her favorite thing about teaching has been the students, whom she calls her little angels. Though Carol's teaching career has come to an end, she doesn't plan to end her work in the community. She hopes to volunteer at Oakwood, a retirement community in Atherton, caring for elderly women of the Religious of the Sacred Heart of Jesus (RSCJ).
In her words:
"When I joined Stuart Hall 37 years ago, I knew that Sacred Heart was a very special school. The RSCJ's were my mentors and taught me how to incorporate the Five Goals into my teaching. I am grateful for all the love and friendship I received over the years. Stuart Hall will be in my heart always."
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Affectionately called "Coachie" by many of his former students, Glen Bowers has taught well over 1,200 students in his 39-year career as a Physical Education teacher at Stuart Hall. An East Bay native, Glen was offered a contract to play professional baseball with the New York Mets but turned it down in favor of completing his college degree. Glen's first teaching job was in Ukiah, where he was hired to teach science and English. He soon returned to the Bay Area where Stuart Hall boys saw him as more than a teacher; he was also a mentor and father figure. In the 80's and 90's, alumni would return to campus when they bought their first car to show it to Glen. In addition to teaching, he also coached baseball, basketball and soccer.
In his words:
"It was such a nice retirement party. During all the years I've worked at Stuart Hall, I've always felt that I had the best job in the world. What's not to love about teaching happy little boys playing games? That along with teaching in a community of genuinely nice people made it a great career. If I could go back in time, I would choose the career I had again in a heartbeat!"
Colleagues honor retiring faculty members with poetry.