New art teacher engages

(Julie Pottinger) Jessica Mohagen, art teacher, gives a student feedback on his work. Mohagen replaced Sonja Juffer, who retired last spring.
(Julie Pottinger) Jessica Mohagen, art teacher, gives a student feedback on his work. Mohagen replaced Sonja Juffer, who retired last spring.

Jessica Mohagen is the newest addition to the high school’s art department.

“This year I’m looking forward to seeing improvement in every one of my students, and having my students grow and take ownership,” Mohagen said, “I love helping them and showing them how far their creativity and art can take them in every direction.”

Mohagen is replacing Sonja Juffer, the previous art teacher who retired last school year. She teaches five sections of art: Zero Hour Art, Art I, Art II, Art III and AP Studio Art.

Jack Tetting, freshman, has clearly expressed his love of art by taking two art classes this year, one of them being Mohagen’s zero hour class.

“I would definitely recommend this class to a friend, it’s really fun and the mixture of all the different grades is really beneficial,” said Tetting.

Mr. Zimpel, graphic arts teacher, was very involved with the interviewing process for the new art teacher. He had a hand in minimizing the large number of names and discussing candidates with the other art teachers and Tim Kenney, principal. Together, they established and put into words what they were trying to capture in this candidate.

“We were looking for a personality, someone who not only looked good on paper but could engage with us in the interview process, and we also did our best to see what this person would do while engaging students,” said Zimpel.

According to Zimpel, they were looking for  someone with a history in teaching art in a variety of environments, who had a vision for what the art department could be, and could hit the ground running and adapt quickly.

“Mr. Kenney has a process for how to interview people, and based on that process, [Mohagen] rose to the top immediately,” Zimpel said.

Mia Pergl, junior, is another one of Mohagen’s zero hour students. Pergl has always loved art and is excited and looking forward to building her portfolio in Mohagen’s class.

“She is young, creative and knows a lot about the recent modern art that’s around Milwaukee, and knowledgeable about what she’s talking about,” said Pergl.

Leading up to her arrival at Shorewood, Mohagen worked at Sauk Prairie High School for five years teaching AP Studio Art. She also worked at Hartford Union High School teaching AP Art.

Mohagen said she is very excited to be teaching at Shorewood. Mohagen most looks forward to new opportunities and discovering what her new art students are capable of.

“I love pushing [my] students and challenging them and I love the age, humor, enthusiasm, and challenge of teaching high school students,” Mohagen said.

by Cela Migan and Madeline Wilson

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