Faculty Spotlight: Woody Poole

Teacher – Middle School Science

Department and Program Affiliations:
Science, Middle School

Academic Background:
B.S. Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute
M.S. Ed, Old Dominion University

How long have you been at Norfolk Academy?
This is my 19th year at Norfolk Academy

Tell us why you wanted to become an educator:
During various stages of 20 years as a Naval Intelligence Officer, part of my responsibility was to teach a variety of naval personnel about the capabilities of the hostile threats they faced.  During the last several years on active duty, I organized and participated in a community service program where personnel of any rank could volunteer to provide help to teachers in the Virginia Beach Public School System. There was little doubt that I had found my next niche. Literally five days after the retirement ceremony was finished in 1994, I was sitting in a Plaza Middle School conference room waiting to begin new teacher orientation.

What most excites you about working at Norfolk Academy?
I’m excited to “work” at Norfolk Academy because every day I get up I don’t feel like I’m going to “work.” I feel like I’m going to a place where I can hang out with some Middle School kids, try to share some life lessons, and maybe even figure something out. That’s exciting!

Norfolk Academy is unique…
...because of all the people that make up the Norfolk Academy family.  From “soup to nuts” I feel that everyone is in some way on the same page of music. The lyrics of the music says, “What can I do to help Johnny or Susie grow, and learn, and mature, and build self-confidence, and hold the honor system high, and…the list could go on and on. It’s a one-of-a-kind institution.

What do you like to do in your own time/when you’re not working?
I like to spend time with the family. Tied for second place are photography, saltwater fishing, and crabbing.

Last book read:
Chesapeake Requiem by Earl Swift

Favorite food?
Grilled Mahi Mahi

A movie is being made about your life. Whom would they cast to play you?
Bill Murray

Fun fact your students might not know about you/might find surprising?
I volunteered for a two-week survival school in the Philippine jungle because I thought it would be “cool.”  Note to self. Research “cool” more thoroughly.

“When I grow up, I want to be …
… the guy who is still being asked, “What do you want to be when you grow up?”