Centreville High School’s (CVHS) newest chemistry teacher is Erik Haigler. Before coming to teach at CVHS, Mr. Haigler taught at Matoaca High School in Chesterfield, Virginia. Mr. Haigler graduated from Virginia Tech with a Bachelor’s Degree in Chemistry and a Master’s Degree in Learning. What Mr. Haigler loves about chemistry is “the critical thinking aspect of chemistry.” And what he loves about teaching? “I have always liked helping children, whether it’s coaching or teaching, and I enjoy helping people succeed [as well as] giv[ing] them the advice to make them successful.” In his free time, he enjoys playing sports such as soccer, basketball, and golf. He also enjoys hiking, as well as going to his family’s beach house in Wilmington, North Carolina.
Mr. Haigler knew he wanted to be a teacher when he was in eighth grade. Before he wanted to teach high school, he wanted to teach middle school. “Originally, I thought I wanted to teach middle school, however, I enjoy the social maturity of high school students.” If Mr. Haigler hadn’t become a teacher, he would’ve been a financial analyst. “After college, I [became] increasingly interested in finance, [and] I also do a significant amount of stock trading and day trading in the summer.”
He also does his very best to overcome the hardships he faces while teaching. He has found a way to help students who are usually unmotivated to do work .“I usually am able to build a good relationship with students, have them set small achievable goals, and when they finish that one, we set a new one.” He hopes that by doing this his students will be better outside and inside of school, as well as enjoy coming into his classroom. His method of handling people who are either getting picked on or being bullied is to “talk to the kids one on one. It’s important to talk to students because they don’t really know how much damage picking on other students can do to hurt that student’s emotional and physiological self. It is not only important to talk to the ‘bully,’ but [also] the kid being picked [as sometimes] they have a hard time talking to [others about what’s happened].” His goal for teaching is to become a better teacher and be a mentor to his students every day.
Mr. Haigler enjoys being and teaching at CVHS, because of the environment that the administrators and teachers foster. “The staff is very nice and the students are respectful.” Mr. Haigler chose to teach Centreville High as a chemistry teacher because he seemed like he remained at home during his interview process. Ten years from now, Mr. Haigler hopes to still be teaching at CVHS, and dreams of being married and having children of his own.
Mr. Haigler is truly a wonderful teacher and a great addition CVHS’ Science Department. He hopes that by the end of the school year his students have a positive view on the sometimes difficult subject of chemistry and are able to understand what to do in class. He hopes that his students can trust him and talk to him whenever they are in need of help.