This High School Teacher
Carol Schmidt, MSU Communications Services
that's what high school psychology teacher Joyce
Jarosz Hannula, '76 SpCm, '93 M, is. Ask colleagues,
administrators and former students who took her
Advanced Placement Psychology class years ago, and
they say Hannula and her classes are hard to forget.
Hannula was definitely inspiring," says Travis Dorsch,
now a punter in the National Football League who
graduated from Purdue University with a degree in
psychology. Dorsch said buzz about Hannula's class
prompted him to enroll in her class. "I loved the
class--enough so that I decided that psychology
would become my major at Purdue.
really had a way of turning all her students on to the concepts
and theories that many of our textbooks had a hard time pushing
us through. She not only made the PROCESS of learning enjoyable,
but Mrs. Hannula seemed to make WHAT we were learning practical
Saunders, principal of Bozeman High School, is Hannuala's boss
and friend, and also sees her value from a parent's viewpoint.
His oldest daughter, Paige Saunders, '03 Psy, was inspired
to make a career of psychology while a student in Hannula's
class. She is currently "at the top of her class at Northwestern's
graduate school majoring in psychology," he said. "Bozeman High
and MSU prepared her well."
is just a fascinating human being, a wonderful person," Saunders
said. "She's a motivator. She's that teacher the kids mention.
She's the kind of educator that will come up again in 10, 20
or 30 years after school is over and you are sitting around
chatting about your youth. She's that one teacher you will remember."
at finding and inspiring passion for learning in her students,
Hannula is an award-winning teacher. In 1993 she won the MSU
Foundation's Graduate Achievement Award. A couple of years ago,
Hannula was selected as one of the first "Women Who Make a Difference"
by the United Way of Gallatin County.
she spent three weeks teaching in Russia as the winner of a
U.S. State Department educational award.
in Russia meant a great deal to Hannula, whose parents immigrated
to Bozeman from Ukrania, also a former Soviet satellite country.
The Russian culture, language and even food were familiar to
Hannula, who said that 30 percent of Russians have roots in
weeks I spoke to 1,200 people," said Hannula, who taught critical
thinking, writing across the curriculum and cooperative learning
in three different Russian cities.
there is still fairly authoritarian," Hannula said of the teaching
style in Russia. "Teachers won't give students much pause to
think, so it's difficult for them to develop critical thinking
also teaches an education course at MSU. The one "secret" she
passes on to future teachers is "you have to put yourself on
don't want to take a good hard look at who you are, how you
feel about others and how you look at learning, then teaching
isn't for you."
students say her lessons are dramatic, her expectations high,
her effectiveness never in doubt. She is so successful at teaching
the fundamentals of psychology that 95 percent of her students
who take the Advanced Placement Psychology courses each year
pass the strenuous AP test, and a whopping two-thirds of her
students receive grades of four or five out of a high of five
who is now studying for a Ph.D. in instruction and curriculum,
said much of the credit for her success lies in the parents
of her students for supporting their children and valuing education.
time they walk into my class, the students are so articulate
and thoughtful. The main thing I do is show my passion for education."
said the passion is mutual.
the greatest thing about Joyce is her ability to listen," he
said. "When you ask for advice, she always leaves you with hope.
And that is a very wonderful thing."