New Faculty Spotlight: Margaret Marshall

Teacher – Middle School Latin
Department and Program Affiliations:
Middle School, Foreign Language Department

Asst. Coach, Cross Country
Asst. Coach, Outdoor Track & Field

Academic background:
B.A., Classics, English,  University of Virginia
M.A., English, University of Virginia

How long have you been at Norfolk Academy?
This is my first year at Norfolk Academy!

Tell us why you wanted to become an educator:
I think I might be programmed by nature and nurture to be an English or Classics teacher, since my mom, who taught English for over 30 years, read me and my sisters the Odyssey when I was only 5 years old and would give me sentences to diagram when I was bored in the summer. For as long as I can remember, I always just imagined myself as a teacher. I’ve always loved to read and to learn, and getting to teach means I keep getting to learn. What a privilege and delight it is to learn—not just about the subject matter, but also about people! My students are such amazing, fun, complex, talented, intelligent, caring, precious people. To get to know them and share in their lives brings me such joy.

What most excites you about working at Norfolk Academy?
When I was considering this job, I actually asked (Middle School Assistant Director/Dean of Students) Bernie McMahon this question. He told me that Norfolk Academy has the best people. He said that, as a former Navy Seal, he was used to working with only the best, so I trusted his judgment. From what I’ve seen so far, it certainly seems true. The people here are warm, thoughtful, passionate, wise...the best.

Norfolk Academy is unique because…
...I am excited to find out all the things that make Academy unique, but its history must be one of them. This school has such a strong, solid sense of itself and its mission. And I’m not sure I’ve mastered the concept of clapping out yet, but that also seems unique to NA.

Last book read:
I just re-read East of Eden by John Steinbeck for the fourth time.

What do you like to do in your own time/when you’re not working?  
I love to run, to sit on the beach reading, to play in the ocean, to bake chocolate chip cookies for people, to play the piano poorly but with gusto, and to go home to Crozet and hang out with my family and walk the dog in the mountains.

Favorite food?
My mom’s spaghetti. Also broccoli, cereal, and ice cream.

A movie is being made about your life. Whom would they cast to play you?
My sister says I look like Mandy Moore? What I would love is if one of my former students becomes a famous actress and she plays me!

Fun fact your students might find surprising:
In 2015 I drove across the country with my best friend and stopped for two days in Omaha so I was able to see the UVA baseball team win the College World Series! 

“When I grow up, I want to be…”
...well, when I was two years old, my answer to this question was “a cow.” I guess some dreams can’t come true. Thankfully I gave up bovine aspirations for educational ones, and that has been a dream come true. I still don’t feel grown up, but no matter what I do, I hope I will be helpful and happy.