This week we find out more about Miss Emily Hartley, second in the Geography department.
What is your role at College?
I am Second in the Geography department (and I will be taking over the role of Head of Geography from September 2016). I am currently a Third Form Tutor in Queen's. I have also been the Junior Colt Bs Hockey coach for the last four years and help coach the Cheltenham College Swim Squad.
What did you do before you came to College?
After completing my degree at the University of St Andrews I spent a year living in France before moving to Bristol to complete by PGCE in 2012. I was then recruited to work at College and started here in September 2012.
If you hadn’t become a teacher, what would you have done instead?
I went through a phase of being very interested in Marine Biology (although I think it was mainly the appeal of going scuba diving in exotic places!) but if I’m honest I have always wanted to be a teacher. It is in my blood; my father was a Headmaster (and Geography teacher!), my mother an MFL teacher, and three of my grandparents also worked in education.
What is your favourite thing about College life?
The strength of the Common Room, the incredibly supportive relationships that I have with my colleagues and the beautiful surroundings in which we work. I count myself very lucky to work with such a strong team of friends in the Geography Department and also in Queen's. College has a fantastic pupil body; we work ourselves incredibly hard and ask a huge amount from our students and it is such a joy to be able to build the positive relationships we do with such charismatic young individuals.
What are you reading at the moment?
I have just started Circling the Sun by Paula McLain. It is about a woman who grew up in Kenya in the 1920s and was recommended to me by a university friend who knows of my very close ties to the country. It describes beautifully many of the special places from my own childhood and explores the freedom we get by pursuing our dreams. I fear it will take me quite a long time to finish as reading for pleasure during term time is an extremely rare occurrence!
Other than your own, what was your favourite subject at school?
Biology and Chemistry. I took both subjects to A Level as I had two incredibly inspirational teachers although I always felt Geography was my strongest subject. It turned out that my best grade for A Level was Chemistry but despite this I knew I had more of a passion for Geography, which is why I chose to study it, along with Sustainable Development, at university.
If you could be Prime Minister for the day, what is the first thing that you would do?
Pass legislation to make recycling compulsory for all, ban plastic bags completely and punish huge corporations such as McDonalds for the amount of rubbish people discard on a daily basis. I was on holiday in Morocco recently and was so saddened by the amount of plastic and rubbish left on the roadside in the beautiful Atlas Mountains; it is such an eyesore and is ruining out planet. It always astounds me when I drive past grass verges to see the amount of rubbish people are happy to simply chuck out of their windows without a thought. If we won’t look after our planet, who will!?