The news site of Glenbrook South High School.

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The news site of Glenbrook South High School.

The Oracle

The news site of Glenbrook South High School.

The Oracle

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Kennedy fosters passions, embraces opportunities

Kennedy fosters passions, embraces opportunities

Whether it’s her Italian roots, generous personality, love for travel or her love for guiding students in the right path, librarian Joanne Kennedy has been fortunate to have the opportunity to pursue all her passions.

According to Joanne’s son, Peter Kennedy, some of his mother’s greatest qualities are her compassion and generosity.

“[Her compassion and generosity] have helped me grow into the person I am but [they have] also [helped the students],” Peter said.

This compassion was put to work in her own life with opportunities to pursue her passions. According to Joanne, she has done many things in her life, including pursuing her education. Throughout her education, Joanne majored in French, religious studies, and education—three very important things to her.

“My two passions […] I got to do,” Joanne said. “I was so lucky. They’re people who don’t get to do what they want to do and I got to do everything I wanted to do.”

With her love for France and traveling, Joanne decided to work for Air France and Swiss Air Airlines.

“I love to travel, that’s what I live for,” Joanne said. “When I was younger, I would save my money and go on trips.”

Some of these trips include France, Italy, Switzerland, and Ireland, according to Joanne.

“[All the places I’ve been to] have beautiful things about them,” Joanne said. “There’s beautiful things about Ireland that I could never forget, Italy is my homeland, and Switzerland is just amazing [with] the mountains.”

In reference to her Italian heritage, Kennedy feels that there’s “pasta sauce” in her veins. However, it’s her passion for France that Peter hopes to share one day.

“My mother always wanted [my brother and I] to see France because it had a huge impact on her life,” Peter said.

After pursuing various desires, she decided to continue her career as a substitute teacher despite the fact that it was not necessarily her “calling”, according to Joanne. What she enjoys about being a librarian is the ability to teach the students in a setting besides the classroom.

“I’m not teaching a subject, I’m talking to kids,” Joanne said. “I’m teaching them to be respectful of each other, and of everybody else.”

Her love for the students is what has made the teaching experience so memorable, according to Joanne.

“I love the energy,” Joanne said. “I love the kids. I’ve always loved the high school aged kids. I love to watch kids come in as freshman and grow into seniors.”

Joanne also believes that the environment surrounding the school adds to her passion for South.

“[South] is a great place,” Joanne said. “[Students] are blessed with some of the best teachers in the world and situations here that are unbeknown to other parts of the country.”

Likewise, the ability to socialize with kids on a deeper level as a librarian is a great takeaway from the experience, according to Peter.

“She’s really happy [at South],” Peter said. “She always talks about how great the kids are and she’s back in her element doing what she does. She’s not lecturing in front of a classroom, she’s in the library, but she’s on a more down-to-earth basis with the kids.”

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