Teacher Feature: An Inside Look at Mr. Michael Pepe


T.J. Lanks

Mr. Pepe pauses for a quick picture while teaching.

It goes without saying that educators are vital to the lives and success of students. Highlighting exceptional faculty members is an important way to express this vitality. One teacher whose tenure and contributions to the school must be noted is Mr. Michael Pepe. 

Mr. Pepe is a science teacher at the High School who currently teaches the Chemistry Honors and AP Chemistry courses. He is well-liked by his students, and he is seen as a uniquely personable and knowledgeable member of the faculty.

From his beginnings working at a summer camp in high school and college, Mr. Pepe has always admired the field of education. This led him to consider teaching as a career and to his eventual employment at various high schools.

“I probably became an educator because over the summers I worked at a summer camp with a lot of educators through high school and during college, and I enjoyed the camaraderie while working there,” Mr. Pepe said. “All [of the educators] seemed to enjoy their professions.”

He has always enjoyed and succeeded in chemistry, and for this reason he decided to study the subject in college and teach the subject once he graduated, he explained. 

“I always liked chemistry class because of the problem-solving aspect and getting to a final right answer, along with the idea of less ambiguity [in the field],” he noted.

The general appreciation for Mr. Pepe and his teaching efforts among the student body is indubitable. Many students agree that he shows clear respect and care for his students, and he ensures that everyone understands the content he teaches. 

Interacting with his students is an important and enjoyable part of his job here at the High School, according to Mr. Pepe.

“I just enjoy my day-to-day interactions with the students,” he added. “I think I have a great bunch of students for the most part. They are a pleasure to work with, and they all seem to have a good sense of humor and personality, which makes coming to work each day enjoyable.”

This appreciation is far from one-sided. A multitude of students affirm that Mr. Pepe is an exceptional teacher and role-model.

His personality and teaching style are notable reasons for this, according to Senior Alexia Massoud, adding that he is a relatable and highly effective teacher.

“I think he is just a great teacher, and he is very funny and interesting,” she said. “He is very straight-to-the-point [and] always open to questions.”

Mr. Pepe never leaves questions unanswered, and he refuses to leave students confused or uninterested, according to Junior Joe Parisi.

“He is an excellent teacher,” he said. “He really takes a lot of time to make sure every student understands the material, and that resonates well with the students because he never leaves any of us behind to be unfamiliar [with] a topic.”

Lastly, it is important to note that no teacher’s activities at school define him/her as a person. Outside of school, Mr. Pepe said he thoroughly enjoys spending time with his family and friends.

“I get to spend a lot of time with my family, taking my kids to their sporting events,” he said. “[I like to] get together with friends and have our kids socialize, go to the beach, and play golf and pickleball.”