The Spotlight Returns: Mr. Matherne!


Recently, a tradition at Chapelle called Spotlight Teacher of the Month began. Every month, Mrs. Panzavecchia, our Assistant Principal, collects submissions from parents and students for a teacher they think is doing an amazing job. One of our most recent recipients was freshmen Theology teacher Mr. Matherne! 

Junior Amber Corb interviewed our amazing teacher!

Q:   What made you want to become a teacher?

A:  “For me, my teachers were so impactful to me; they changed my life. They helped me find my faith, and they encouraged me to be passionate about learning. When I was in college and doing something I liked but wasn’t really passionate about, I was thinking about a job and how I wanted my career to be fulfilling. I kept thinking back to how much I owed to my teachers, and I just couldn’t think of a more fulfilling job.”

Q:   Why did you decide to teach theology?

A:  “My teachers really sparked my interest in theology and encouraged me to find my faith and have my conversion. Since that time I’ve been passionate about learning about the faith and being able to teach it. Just being able to learn every day and give back to my students is a beautiful thing to have.”

Q:   What’s your favorite part about teaching at Chapelle?

A:  “It’s the students. Coming in every day and seeing their faces and being able to joke with them and talk with them . . . it really is a relational ministry…really to show them that we care for them and being able to talk to them and show that to them.”

Q:   How long have you been teaching?

A:  “This is my second year at Chapelle.”

Q:   What kind of student were you in school?

A:  “I was a quiet student who really focused on my academics. I would get to school super early and do all my homework. I was kind of quiet in class, but I worked hard and graduated from Jesuit with straight A’s and a 4.0.”

Q:  What is your fondest Chapelle memory?

A:  “That’s a tough one. Penny Wars. Getting dunked in penny wars. For two reasons – seeing the joy of my classes while I was getting dunked and seeing the classes work together. Everyone was having a good time and working together and laughing, so I think penny wars for sure.”

Q:   What do you like to do outside of school?

A:  “I like to read a lot, and I’m actually still in school. I’m working on my second masters right now. That really takes up a lot of my time, so I really like to read and study for school.”

Q:   What is the most important thing you want your students to learn from you?

A:  “That we care. I know that sounds super generic, but my students are gonna forget 90% of what we talk about in class, but they’ll remember when we joke and show them that we care. I want them to know we care  — even if a test is hard and difficult. We want the students to know we care, and we want them to be the best students they can be.”

Student Gabriella Ruffino interviewed two of Mr. Matherne’s previous students to hear what they love about their teacher: sophomores Isabel Adams and Madeline Vogt.

Q:  What is your favorite thing about Mr.Matherne?

IA: His guidance and how he is easy to talk to.

MV: He is a very good listener and is always giving us advice.

Q:  What is Mr.Matherne’s teaching style?

IA: Mr. Matherne is laid-back but makes sure you know the material if you need help.

MV: He gives good analogies and is a good visual teacher so you can understand.

Q:  What has Mr.Matherne taught you so far this year?

IA: The church and its value. Anything a young Chapelle student should know 

MV: No matter what you do, God still loves you. 

Q:  What are three words that describe Mr.Matherne?

IA: I would say caring, awesome, and funny.

MV: Definitely helpful, generous, and funny.

Q:  Why does Mr.Matherne deserve the Spotlight a Teacher award?

IA: He is a great person, takes care of his students, and gives great advice for outside and inside the classroom.

MV: He is a really good teacher and role model who cares about our lives.

The Chapelle family is happy to recognize Mr. Matherne with this award for his wonderful dedication and skill!