By Brady Baylis ‘19
The classroom is an excellent setting to learn information, but at the same time, it often keeps the teacher relatively obscure to his or her students. Many teachers possess a diverse background that allows them to provide their students with a unique and valuable perspective. One of Chaminade’s new teachers, Mr. Jeremy Reyes, provides a perfect example of a teacher with an interesting and hands-on background in his field of biology and perspective on teaching.
Mr. Reyes was born in Queens and later grew up in Suffolk County, where he attended Half Hollow Hills East High School. Taking an interest in biology, he earned his degree from Stony Brook University before going to serve in the fire department. He fought fires and worked with the ambulance crew before eventually shifting his career into the pharmaceutical business, where he worked for many years.
During his career in pharmaceuticals, he worked on many vaccines and other medicines while simultaneously studying in graduate school to earn a master’s degree in business and science. “I always wanted to help people, and I began thinking about becoming a teacher. I then decided if I didn’t leave the pharmaceutical business now, I never would,” Mr. Reyes said.
In 2008, Mr. Reyes left the pharmaceutical world and became an educator. After earning his teaching certification, his first teaching job was a brief stint at Cathedral Prep Seminary in Queens. Mr. Reyes then decided to work in the public school system, where he accepted a job working with homebound students, particularly young mothers and suspended students.
After a few years of working in the public school system, he returned to Cathedral Prep, where he taught a variety of classes, including biology and forensics. Mr. Reyes then decided this year to join the Chaminade Family. He teaches freshman biology and is helping moderate the Robert C. Wright Speech and Debate Team, as well as the Economics Club and Science Club.
Marianist education is a staple in his family, as his son was a member of Chaminade’s class of 2014, and his daughter is a senior at Kellenberg. “In a Marianist school there is, of course, a devotion to Mary,” explained Mr. Reyes, “and I definitely understand that, and appreciate it a lot.”
Mr. Reyes, like many other teachers, has brought his expertise to help the Chaminade family grow. Through his experiences in the fire department, the laboratory, and the public school system, Mr. Reyes has much to offer the Chaminade family. He noted “I am proud of my past and happy to bring it to Chaminade. I’m having a blast.”