New science instructor adds to equation

Department employs chemistry teacher


Breanna Thompson

Chemistry teacher Patrick Puskala uses his Macbook Pro to teach class Feb. 2.

Lukas Levin

The science department recently hired a new member to their staff, chemistry teacher Patrick Puskala. Puskala said arriving at Park was a jarring yet unique experience.

“(Coming to Park) is kind of a shock, but I think it’s a nice place, (and) I like my students. I can’t say anything bad,” Puskala said. “I like the facility, I’ve gotten lost a couple of times, and I still haven’t figured out where everything is. I didn’t realize how big of building this is until I started walking around.”

Junior Daniel Hunegs said he believes Puskala will be successful at Park based on his previous experiences.

“I feel that he has the potential to be a good chemistry teacher because he has taught chemistry before and I am excited for the semester,” Hunegs said.

Before working as a teacher at Park, Puskala said he taught at Saint Croix Preparatory School and Saint Bernards High School. However, according to Puskala, teaching is not his first occupation.

“This is actually my second career. I worked in medicine and medical equipment before (I) became a teacher,” Puskala said. “(My previous job will) scare people. I was working with neurology and the brain, monitoring and things like that.”

Junior Cecilia Brown said she enjoys being in class with Puskala thus far and likes how student-centric he is.

“He’s a great teacher. He gives us breaks in the middle of teaching. Plus I feel like I know him better because he talks to us about himself,” Brown said. “(It is) important to him to build relationships with his students.”

Puskala said he relishes his job and is enthusiastic about challenging his students with concepts that may confuse them.

“I enjoy teaching science. Like the rest of the department, I am a science nerd. I get excited about those things that students are sort of like, ‘what?’ so I am really excited about that,” Puskala said.