In the morning, most families say good morning and go their separate ways to work and school. However, at McNick, there are eight families where work and school happen to be the same place.
Mrs. Julie Dill teaches her son, sophomore Eric Dill in her French II class. The two find a balance in being in a classroom setting together by following the guideline, “What happens at home stays at home and what happens at school stays at school,” Eric said.
“Being able to be a part of the same community and share the excitement of McNick with my children is a great advantage of my job,” said Mrs. Dill, “but I know that this is their high school experience and I can’t get too involved in their lives here.”
Admissions Assistant Therese Hazzard has not one, not two, but three Rockets walking the halls of McNick. Senior Nate, and sophomores Jonathon and Christiane love sharing their passion for McNick with their mom.
“Although I am not an alum of McNick, working here and having my children here make me feel more connected to their school,” Mrs. Hazzard said.
The three students take advantage of some of the convenience of having their mom at school.
“In the event that I need to temporarily store something like a poster-board in her office, I can do that,” Jonathon said.
Christiane added, “When it comes to rides and other little things like that it’s nice having her here.”
Junior Emma Heise has a unique situation with both of her parents working at McNick.
“It’s actually very convenient because they’re always there when I need them,” said Emma. “I can go and talk to them if I need anything during the day. Plus they have cars to drive me because I don’t have my own.”
Emma had her mom for health during her freshman year, but didn’t have a hard time finding a balance between treating her as a mom and teacher.
“I just had a problem calling her mom in class and in the halls, so I usually call her by her nickname,” Emma said.
Director of Athletics Rob Heise, and Health and Physical Education Department Chair Cheryl Heise love seeing and being a part of the little things that happen in their daughter’s daily life that most parents miss out on.
”Having my kids go through McNick has been a huge blessing! With Mr. Heise and I both here, it’s more than just our jobs. It has also been amazing to watch them athletically. There’s a great sense of pride that I already have in our athletic programs, but I enjoy it all the more seeing my own kids wearing Rocket green and white and representing this wonderful place,” Mrs. Heise said.
Director of Campus Ministry and Theology Teacher Jeff Hutchinson-Smyth is in his 14th year teaching at McNick, but this year has a new twist: his son Soren is now walking the halls as a freshman Rocket.
“It’s a real joy to witness one of my favorite communities on the planet and one of my favorite people on the planet get together,” Mr. Hutchinson-Smyth said.
“The biggest advantage of having my dad here is that I always have help if I need it, whether it’s signing a permission slip or if I need some help with homework. I do my homework after school in his class because it’s quiet and it’s a good place to get work done,” Soren said.
The two have yet to be in a classroom setting together, since Mr. Hutchinson-Smyth teaches primarily juniors and seniors.
“We don’t have plans to try to avoid such a scenario, but we won’t be actively working to try to make it happen either. I think I’d enjoy having him in class, but I also hope he gets the pleasure of having each of my colleagues in the Theology department as teachers at some point,” Mr. Hutchinson-Smyth said.
Director of Curriculum Dan Rosenbaum also welcomed his freshman son Nick into the McNick community this year.
“We ride to and from school together every day. That is guaranteed time for us to have together where we can talk about sports or current events, or Nick gets a chance to let me know how his day went,” Mr. Rosenbaum said.
Nick is already being put to work by his dad around the school.
“I have him help set up chairs, unlock doors for subs and things like that,” Mr. Rosenbaum said.
For Nick, having his dad around has been a huge advantage.
“Having someone who has worked at McNick for as long as my dad has has helped me get to know my way around. I’ve been familiar with the building since I was a child, and now I have a class in his old room,” Nick said.
Junior Emma Kapp and sophomore Sean Kapp welcomed their mom into the Rocket family this year when Mrs. Shannon Kapp took on the position of Director of Communications.
Having their mom around school is not foreign to these siblings. Prior to working at McNick, Mrs. Kapp worked at Guardian Angels where they attended grade school.
“This is their school first. We maintain a mutual respect clause. They know I’m not going to be coming in the cafeteria waving and trying to chat, but they also know if they come to my office and see I’m busy that my work is the priority,” said Mrs. Kapp.
Mrs. Kapp keeps a candy dish in her office and always knows if her kids and their friends have stopped in by the lack of candy remaining in the bowl. She loves that she’s grown to know her kids friends even better since working at McNick.
“My friends have even started calling her mom, too,” Emma said.
School Psychologist Mr. Matt Musselman is in his 10th year at McNicholas. His son, senior Jordan Musselman, loves that he and his dad get to share the ride to school together. The two don’t cross paths often during school hours, with Mr. Musselman being at McNick just two to three times a week and busy while he’s there.
“I get a lot of compliments on what my dad does for the school and what he does for others, which is really cool,” Jordan said.
The Sandmanns have been at McNick for quite some time. Mrs. Mary Beth Sandmann is a 1979 graduate of McNicholas and has been a Theology teacher at McNick for 20 years. She has sent all six of her children here and now works alongside her son David in the Theology department. Sophomore Lisa Sandmann is the last of six to represent the McNicholas green and white, and she said people joke around with her about her family’s presence in the school.
“My friends joke about how I am good at religion because my family has ‘Jesus talks’ and last year when I had my mom, people always thought I knew stuff because she would test me at home,” Lisa said.
Mrs. Sandmann feels blessed that she was able to watch the interactions of her children throughout the years including getting to know all of their friends and knowing the ins and outs of their school.
“It’s a great community here, and I’m thrilled I get to be here with them in it,” Mrs. Sandmann said.