Take 5 with Ms. Epstein

Shelby Moreno, Editor

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As another school year begins at Sunnyvale High School, more students and staff members continue to join the once small community. One in particular, is one of the new Assistant Principals, Ms. Epstein. 

Epstein is originally from San Diego, California but attended college in Virginia at Liberty University. She eventually made her way to Texas and has lived here for over twenty years. 

Due to her “huge passion for anything social studies” and desire to be “influential in young people’s lives,” Epstein got her degree in Social Sciences and became a teacher to do “the two things [she] loves most.”

Epstein taught for fifteen years and throughout her teaching career, she worked hard to get her masters degree in Administrative Education at Texas A&M Commerce.

“I knew that while I loved teaching I also knew that I wanted to, hopefully, become more influential in not only the student’s lives, but in teacher’s lives as well,” she said. “At the end of the day, it really is my goal to have students be the center of all the decisions we make and that’s not just a platitude for me. I know you hear that a lot, but it’s just a priority of mine to honor that statement and really make decisions that take the students and their futures into consideration.”

In high school, Epstein played sports year round. She was the captain of her volleyball team, and played softball as well as basketball. One of Epstein’s favorite hobbies is reading.

“I’ve always loved to read,” Epstein said, “it’s a boring hobby, I know, but ever since I was a little girl, I’ve enjoyed reading.” 

Epstein also showed off her collection of tiny flags that she brings home from every new country she visits.

“Travel is a huge part of my life,” said Epstein, “My daughter and I have traveled to Japan and South Korea and we both just loved it! We really love getting to know other people’s culture, language and food; it’s just truly amazing.”

Not only does Epstein like to read and travel, she also likes to cook and try different ethnic restaurants.

“I love to cook, but primarily because I love to eat!” Epstein said, “Although, I don’t just eat to eat, I eat for the experience. I cook a lot of Korean, Indian, and Japanese food. If I eat out, I’ll go somewhere that’s more authentic and traditional rather than a more Americanized restaurant so I can have that exposure.” 

A fun fact about Epstein is that she not only enjoys listening to K-Pop, but also K-Rap.

“If you look on my phone, there’s nothing but Korean, and some Japanese, music. I also have a guilty pleasure of watching too much TV. I like watching international shows and movies. I will watch anything from Chinese shows to Bollywood Movies!”

When asked her first impressions on Sunnyvale, Epstein said, “Everyone here, especially the students and staff, have been truly kind, generous, and down to earth. I’ve worked at a lot of different school districts and I’ve never seen a student body that is so respectful, pleasant, and compliant. With all of the head administration team being new, it’s very helpful to have such a warm and welcoming attitude from everyone.” 

Along with being impressed by the atmosphere of the school, Epstein was also shocked by the inclusiveness of the entire town.

“In terms of the ‘small community’ feel, it’s amazing to see the turnout at events!” said Epstein. “It was amazing to see, even for meet the teacher night, that hundreds of people showed up! If you’ve always been here, you don’t really know how big of a deal that really is, or how different that is compared to other schools. Coming from other districts, however, I have never seen anything like it and I think it’s really neat to be apart of that.”

When discussing her short term and long term goals at Sunnyvale, Epstein said, “For short term, especially this first year, a big goal I have is to just get to know the students more and to be involved in the activities and support the extracurriculars as much as possible. I really want to become part of the Sunnyvale family and culture, even more than I feel I already am. In a long term perspective, I would enjoy being able to stay here at Sunnyvale as an assistant principal and being able to grow in that role, as well as grow more in the community.”

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