We are wrapping up our series of posts featuring new teachers at FWSU this year. Don’t miss Part 1 and Part 2.



Justin Wills with Fozzie

Teaching Assignment:  6th Grade

School: Fletcher Elementary

Hometown: Fairfax, VT

Alma Mater: UVM, Concordia University (Montreal)

Teaching Experience:  10 years in Franklin and Chittenden Counties

Why You Chose Teaching:  It is fun to work with the energy and creativity of students.

Hobbies/Interests: Playing guitar, cooking, hanging out with our dogs.

Little Known Fact About You: I share a birthday with Buddha.

Accomplishment you are most proud of (so far!):  Running a marathon and training our puppy Fozzie to sleep through the night.

Wellness Lifestyle Tip: Try to get enough sleep!

Fun Summer Memory:  Exploring Colorado and Utah with my wife, and visiting family out west

Favorite Things: Chocolate chip cookies, Star Wars, and Bob Ross

Quotable:  “I never set out to be weird. It was always other people who called me weird.” Frank Zappa



Shannon Arnzen

Teaching Assignment:  K-2 Special Educator

School: BFA Fairfax

Hometown: Tuxedo, NY

Alma Mater: UVM M.Ed.

Teaching Experience: Long-term substitute for third grade STEM & Special Education teacher

Why You Chose Teaching:  I believe in the possibilities for all children

Hobbies/Interests: Reading, spending time with my family, hiking

Little Known Fact About You: I have three daughters

Accomplishment you are most proud of (so far!):  Being a mom

Wellness Lifestyle Tip: Get sleep and smile

Fun Summer Memory:  Santa’s Village!

Favorite Things: Homemade Pesto, Aerosmith, A Christmas Story

Quotable: All means all.”



Liz Noonan in her classroom

Teaching Assignment:  High School Social Studies

School: BFA Fairfax

Hometown: Jericho, VT

Alma Mater: Frostburg State University – Bachelors of Science, Masters of Arts in Teaching, Masters of Education (Administration and Supervision)

Teaching Experience: 6 years of Middle School Social Studies, 5 years of High School Social Studies

Why You Chose Teaching:  I have always loved working with students and sharing my knowledge with others to help create a more diverse and unique world.

Hobbies/Interests: Hiking, SUP, Skiing

Little Known Fact About You: I love to skydive.

Accomplishment you are most proud of (so far!):  Completed my doctoral coursework!

Wellness Lifestyle Tip: Go Outside!

Fun Summer Memory:  4th of July at Wrigley Field

Favorite Things:  Movie – A Philadelphia Story.  Music: O.A.R

Quotable: “Every little thing, gonna be alright” – Bob Marley



Laura Heil

Teaching Assignment:  High School Science Teacher (Physical Science, Forensics, and Farm to School)

School: BFA Fairfax

Hometown:  Burlington, VT (but grew up in Hudson Falls, NY)

Alma Mater: I received my Bachelor’s of Science in Biology from St. Michael’s College in 2010, and my Master’s of Science in Biology from Montana State University Bozeman in 2016. I recently completed Champlain College’s Teaching Apprenticeship Program (TAP) in the Spring of 2018 where I received my VT teaching license in 7-12 Science.

Teaching Experience:  Starting in 2012, I taught Ecology to K-8th graders at The Ecology School at Ferry Beach in Saco, Maine for a year and a half. During my TAP experience, I student taught science to 9th, 10th, and 12th graders at U-32 High School in Montpelier under Alison Gauthier. Following TAP, I taught as a long-term sub in Gabe Grant’s classroom here at BFA this past winter. Then, I finished the 17-18 school year as a long-term sub teaching science at Enosburg Falls High School.

Why You Chose Teaching:  I believe that everyone deserves access to high-quality science education and I strive to provide that to my students each and every day.  Also, seeing the world through a scientific lens makes life so much more exciting, and I hope to ignite that excitement within my students through teaching.

Hobbies/Interests: I love doing most outdoor activities including hiking, backpacking, rock climbing, skiing, and gardening. I also love to play field hockey, knit, host potluck dinners and travel.

Little Known Fact About You: During a trip to Zambia, I had the chance to touch a live cheetah! I was lucky enough to be a part of a team that was radio-collaring a cheetah. While the cheetah was put under, I got to give it a quick pet and get my picture taken with it.

Accomplishment you are most proud of (so far!):  My Master’s research on Montana’s native, wild bees and the flowers they depend on was recently published in a scientific journal.

Wellness Lifestyle Tip: Discover what self-care activities you enjoy most and strive to do one of those for yourself every day.

Fun Summer Memory:  As an Earthwatch Project Facilitator this past summer, I got paid to travel with a bunch of high schoolers to the sub-Arctic to Churchill, Manitoba and saw 6 polar bears, got to kayak with beluga whales, and saw the Aurora Borealis for the first time ever!

Favorite Things: I enjoy eating homemade hummus, fresh picked strawberries and blueberries, dark chocolate, chai lattes, sharp cheddar, and my parent’s homemade Bread & Butter pickles and salsa. I love most music but enjoy folk, bluegrass, Latin and jazz the most.

Quotable:  “Trust the wait. Embrace the uncertainty. Enjoy the beauty of becoming. When nothing is certain, anything is possible.”



Michele Michalski

Teaching Assignment:  Grade 1/2

School: Fletcher Elementary

Hometown: Colchester, VT

Alma Mater: California State University San Bernadino

Teaching Experience:  14 years

Why You Chose Teaching: I love working with kids. It’s really fun to watch them learn and grow as humans and students.

Hobbies/Interests:  Cycling, swimming, reading, baking, and cooking

Little Known Fact About You:  I love to make ice cream!

Accomplishment you are most proud of (so far!):  I’m most proud of my two kids.

Wellness Lifestyle Tip: Remember to take some time out for yourself doing something you love.

Fun Summer Memory:  Hanging out on the beach with my family.

Favorite Things:  I love ice cream and great Mexican food. My favorite movies happen to be mob movies. The Godfather and Goodfellas are favorites. I love to read, especially autobiographies and thrillers.

Quotable: “Find ways to be more awesome” – Kid President

Leave a Reply

Please log in using one of these methods to post your comment:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s