Scecina Teacher Spotlight: Jesse Purvis ’06

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By Beth Murphy, Director of Marketing Communications

Jesse Purvis was senior class president at Scecina, graduating in 2006. He returned to Scecina after getting his bachelor of arts degree in English literature from Wabash College, and he’s still a leader, now serving as chairman of Scecina’s English Department.

You’ll also see him with a microphone in hand leading Scecina pep rallies and announcing Crusader football and basketball games. He also is head coach of the boys varsity soccer team and the English coach for Scecina’s Academic Super Bowl team, which won the Indiana Crossroads Conference championship in March.

For Mr. Purvis, teaching offers magical moments when “you see the growth in academic achievement of the students,” he said. “I also enjoy giving kids the avenue toward creative expression. Reading a good book or watching a fabulous film inspires us to be creative, and I like giving that experience to kids.”

During college, he worked as a counselor at Camp Rancho Framasa, the Archdiocese of Indianapolis’ Catholic Youth Organization camp in Brown County, Ind. At CYO camp, he realized many of his fellow counselors were going on to become teachers because they enjoyed being with kids and teaching them.

“I also shared this joy and decided to get into teaching my sophomore year of college,” he said.

Mr. Purvis said he is “passionate about education that takes a holistic approach.”

“If I can inspire kids to develop a desire to learn and to be inspired while also teaching them the tools they can use in communication and writing, then I feel like I have done my job well,” he said.

A freshman multicultural English literature course at Wabash College inspired him to major in the subject.

“We read great works from writers of all sorts of different ethnicities,” he said. “The voices of each author resonated with me and made me realize all humans suffer and receive joy from the same human emotions, and it is the culture that dramatically affects us for better or worse.”

Senior Julia Johnston is Mr. Purvis’ teaching assistant. Teaching assistants at Scecina help teachers with tasks like making copies and helping grade papers.

Julia has taken advantage of many Scecina opportunities. She played volleyball all four years at Scecina, has been a President’s Academic Excellence Award recipient and a member of National Honor Society; served in Key Club and as a Student Ambassador, and competed on the Academic Super Bowl team. She tried some new things this senior year: Spring Musical, choir and tennis. She currently takes Mr. Purvis’ Critical Thinking class and he was her Honors English teacher in her sophomore year.

“He’s very helpful,” she said. “If you have any questions, he’s good at explaining how to get the answer. He makes sure the classroom is stress-free, still he holds his students to a high standard.”

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