New Teachers Say “Hola” and “Bonjour” to Servite

Joseph Beaird, Staff Writer

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This year at Servite, we are lucky to have two new teachers join the Romance Language department. The Spokesman caught up with Señor Northgrave and Madame Crawford-Dixon to learn more.

The Spokesman: How did you first learn your languages?
Northgrave: A lot of practice! I studied for an hour a day two years straight. Then I went out and spoke to people. I learned the fastest when I only spoke Spanish. I made a lot of mistakes but people helped me to speak better.

Crawford-Dixon: I studied French since middle school, majored in it in college and attained my Masters degree in French Studies from the Pennsylvania State University. I learned Spanish by living in Santiago, Chile.

The Spokesman: When and why did you decide that you wanted to teach?

Northgrave: The only Spanish major that my University offered was Spanish Education. I was forced into the teaching part. Once I started to take the education classes though, I knew that I wanted to be a teacher. I suddenly had an ambition to help students that feel the way I felt in high school (no desire, don’t understand the importance of knowledge, etc.). I knew that I had a duty to help students develop a love for learning.

Crawford-Dixon:  I decided to teach when I was a teaching assistant at Penn State.  I just loved teaching the undergraduate students there.

The Spokesman: What about Servite interested you to come here?

Northgrave: I wanted to be in a place where I could let students know where true knowledge comes from – Christ.

Crawford-Dixon: I love the mission, the focus on building relationships, the academics, and the fact that it is a single-gender high school aligned with the UC system.

The Spokesman: How long have you been teaching?

Northgrave: 4 years

Crawford-Dixon: 27 years!

The Spokesman: Where are you from?

Northgrave: I was born in Canada but I have lived in Tennessee most of my life. I am still a Canadian citizen though. (Don’t hold it against me!!)

Crawford-Dixon: Harrisburg, Pennsylvania

The Spokesman: What is your favorite thing about speaking Spanish/French?

Northgrave: I love it when a native speaker gives me a double take. They are thinking, ” Why does this gringito speak Spanish?” I also love helping random people. If I see someone that does not speak English and is in need I will always use my Spanish to help them out.

Crawford-Dixon: I love speaking both languages.  I love teaching students about languages and the cultures of the people who speak them.

The Spokesman: What are some fun facts about yourself?

Northgrave: I have a green card. I have played hockey since I was three. I love to skateboard.

Crawford Dixon: I love to travel to French and Spanish-speaking countries.  In my free time, I enjoy reading and cooking French and Chilean food.  I love to eat out at restaurants on the weekend.  In-n-out is my favorite fast food restaurant.  I love classic and alternative rock music (U2 is my favorite group).

The Spokesman: Thank you both for your time! We’re glad you’re here. Adios and au revoir!


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