Sofie Brutseart and Lucy Falso
Beloved drawing and painting teacher Carl Wenzel will be retiring at the end of this year, after 39 years of teaching at Jamesville- DeWitt High School.
Mr. Wenzel enjoyed his many years of teaching and is going to miss many things about being a part of the J-DHS community. “I love the students, I love the faculty, I love everything about this school,” said Mr. Wenzel. Mr. Wenzel then stated that the parents and administration all support the art program which, has helped to make a great experience while working at J-DHS. “ My predecessor really set up the art program so that it is a really strong program,” said Mr. Wenzel.
The J-DHS student body will miss Mr. Wenzel’s humor, which he brings into the art room every day. “ We always have art but in an entertaining way,” said junior Aastha Thakar. Freshman Brian Hulburt thinks that Mr. Wenzel is really fun and a good teacher at the same time. “ He’s been at J-D such a long time that he knows what he is teaching,” said freshmen Josh Hillers.
In his free time Mr. Wenzel hopes to spend more time working on his children’s book illustrations. He originally went to Syracuse University to become an illustrator, and but it wasn’t until much later in life that he got his chance. He was sixty years old when he was contacted by an author who wanted to write and publish a children's book with him as an illustrator. Two of the books he’s illustrated so far are Scarecrow Finds a Friend by Rifken and Blume, and The Moosey Ate my Peas by Marilee Gordon. Although so far he has only illustrated three books, he hopes to use his retirement to continue that passion.“ It’s such an exciting thing to do because it's what I’ve wanted to do all my life,” said Mr. Wenzel. He’s planning on finding an agent to help him promote his work. “To create these characters in the book and to work with the author, it’s a really nice thing to do,” said Mr. Wenzel.
Mr. Wenzel does not actually have a college degree in teaching. He has both a Master's degree and a BA in Illustration, as well as 49 years of art teaching experience. He worked for two years in the Jordan Elbridge Central School District, six years at Eagle Hill Middle School and two years in the Westhill Central School District before beginning his career at J-DHS.