Missy Doll '06
Picking E-town was the best choice I ever could have made! - Missy Doll
Missy Doll of Lititz, Pa., is a physics teacher at Manheim Township (Pa.) High School, not far from the E-town campus. She completed a double major in math education and physics, with a minor in political science. In her four years at the College, Missy completed an impressive 191 credits. After E-town, she went on to earn a master's degree in teaching and curriculum from Pennsylvania State University. We sat down with Missy to ask her a few questions about her time at E-town and about her teaching careers.
How long have you been teaching?
This is my fifth year, and I love my job! I can’t imagine doing anything else. I teach college-prep Physics 1, Independent STEM Research, and AP Physics C (both Mechanics and Electricity and Magnetism). AP Physics C is the equivalent of the calculus-based college Physics 1 and 2 at E-town.
Picking E-town was the best choice I ever could have made! When I was in high school, I knew I wanted to be a teacher. I was good at math, but I enjoyed physics. I knew I wanted to double major in math and physics/engineering, but I wasn’t sure how to do that. I decided to double major, but most schools wouldn’t let me do that. I can remember going to a college fair where an admissions counselor from another school wouldn’t even talk to me about the possibility. She said pick one, and then we’ll talk. When I visited E-town, Professor David Ferruzza sat down with my mom and me to figure out how it was possible to double major. He acknowledged that it wouldn’t be easy, but I could do it if I wanted to. Everyone was willing to work with me to make it happen.
What is the most memorable academic or co/extracurricular achievement during your time at Elizabethtown?
My most memorable extracurricular achievements would be all of the things we did with the Physics and Engineering Club. I always loved Into the Streets because we had the opportunity to show elementary school students what physics is all about. My most memorable academic achievement would probably be working on both physics research and math research at the same time! As a physics major I had to complete a research project, and I also wanted to earn Honors in the Discipline in mathematics. So, two projects it was!
You are involved with your students, advising some extracurricular activities – can you tell us about that, and why you feel these activities are so important for students?
I am involved in three major extracurricular activities: science fair, Quiz Bowl, and Physics Olympics. I think science fair is important to give high school students a chance to conduct their own research. That was what initially sparked my interest in physics in high school, so why not share that with my students? One of my students was the Champion of the North Museum Science and Engineering Fair in 2009 and then went on to the Intel International Science and Engineering Fair to earn fourth place in his category. He built a table tennis robot that was a cheaper design than others on the market.
I also am involved with the North Museum Science and Engineering Fair in a leadership role. I was the 2010 fair director, and this year I organized the auxiliary awards. Physics Olympics is a one-day event for students. Students from all over Lancaster County come to the event to compete in a number of fun physics-themed activities. Quiz Bowl is the activity that actually consumes most of my time. Manheim Township has a long history of success in Quiz Bowl, and I hope to continue that into the future.
Tell us about the day-to-day of your career and in what ways do you feel you are carrying on the mission of Elizabethtown – where learning is most noble when used to help others?
I typically arrive at school by 6 a.m. I know it is early, but I want to make sure I’m there and ready to help students by the time they arrive. I teach six classes every day, including four sections of college-prep Physics 1, one section of AP Physics C, and one section of Independent STEM Research. After school, I can be found working with students on science fair projects, or running Quiz Bowl practice. I learned a lot while I was at E-town; now I get to teach others what I have learned. What could be better than that?
What attracted you to E-town College, and what advice about choosing a college would you give to prospective students who are looking to get into science?
What didn’t I like about E-town? From my first visit, I knew it was where I wanted to go to school. I liked the small-school atmosphere and the professors' willingness to help you in any way possible. For anyone who wants to major in science, be prepared for a lot of work. Some majors will require a lot of studying, but it is worth it in the end.