Academic and athletic
Anatomy teacher and cheer department head to move after 10 years
May 31, 2017
The anxiety seems to keep piling up. The amount of boxes and packing left to do never stops growing. Day by day, anatomy teacher and cheer department head Danielle Trepagnier takes down posters in her classroom and packs up her cheer items to soon take her life in another direction.
After 10 years at Hebron, Trepagnier will be moving to New Orleans on June 10 to fill the gap of her long-distance relationship with her fiancé of two years. Trepagnier plans to get married in July. Trepagnier will be teaching anatomy and biology as well as take on the role of department head at an all-girls private school in New Orleans.
“I think for me it’s getting out of my comfort zone because I’m comfortable here and everything in New Orleans is going to be new for me,” Trepagnier said. “I’m excited to move, obviously to make a life with my fiance, but change is just not the easiest thing to do especially when it’s a lot of change at once. It’s just bittersweet to leave everybody behind because I won’t have any friends in New Orleans so I have to make new friends and that’s interesting to me because I’ve had the same friends my whole life.”
Besides leaving friends and colleagues, Trepagnier said she hopes to leave a positive impact and legacy for her students. Ever since getting to know Trepagnier her freshman year, junior Grace Orler said that Trepagnier has become her biggest role model and one day hopes to be like her.
“Overall, Coach T has changed Hebron cheer as a program and made it the best that it can be,” junior Grace Orler said. “She’s pushed everyone to want to do their best and she motivates everyone to want to get and want to have a great pep rally and want to hit zero. Without her motivation and encouragement, I feel like it all would not be just the same, [cheer] wouldn’t have a drive to do anything.”
Besides being a part of the cheer program for 10 years, Trepagnier has also taught anatomy and physiology for eight years. After taking Trepagnier’s class, junior Rebecca Philips said Trepagnier became her favorite teacher and she was more encouraged to pursue a career in the medical field.
“She was always caring and passionate about what she does and she always knew her information,” Philips said. “If I ever had a question, she was able to answer it perfectly. [Her anatomy class] was just a really caring environment. Her passion for what she does radiates onto her students.”
Trepagnier found most of her inspiration to pursue cheer and anatomy through her dad, who was a football coach and a biology teacher for 40 years. Trepagnier comes from a family of teachers and coaches and calls it the ‘family business’.
“When I was 13 I had the opportunity to try out for cheer and I made it,” Trepagnier said. “ It was one of those things where I caught the bug and loved it. After college, I was like ‘well I’m not really ready to give it up.’ I got into coaching and honestly, I think I might like it better. I enjoy watching the girls get new skills and perform and really have that same love that I had for cheer. It’s fun to see that in their eyes and every year I get to relive my cheer experiences through them.”
While Trepagnier is not going to be taking on cheer in New Orleans, science is a field of passion she said she could never give up. She believes she has worked hard to shape the anatomy and physiology class to how it is today.
“I’ve always loved science,” Trepagnier said. “I think at a young age when you really like science, you just want to know more, learn more. Anatomy in college was really hard, but really interesting to me. So every year when I get to teach it, even though I teach the same thing twice a year, it never gets old to me cause you have new questions, new students and new interests. I just want them to get excited about it too and instill that interest in them like my fourth grade science teacher and my dad did for me. It’s not hard work when you love what you do.”
Although Trepagnier doubted her career choices in college and questioned if becoming a teacher was the right decision for her, she eventually realized teaching was a natural fit for her.
“I thought when I was in college maybe I would want [to work in the] medical field of some sort,” Trepagnier said. “But when I did my student teaching, I was like ‘I definitely like what I’m doing and I enjoy it’. Many of my friends who started teaching already burnt out and aren’t teaching anymore. I’ve never felt that way. I get excited when my kids are applying to medical school, becoming doctors, going to physical therapy school and going to nursing school. I’m like ‘that’s awesome,’ because I helped push them in those directions, and that’s the best gift of teaching. You get to watch other people excel in their dreams and maybe you had a little bit of an impact on them.”