Peer Leadership 2020 A Candid Interview with Mrs. Saymansky


Sarah Hunyadi, Peer Leadership 2020

In the Senior Edition of The Eye of the Hurricane, I had the opportunity to interview Mrs. Saymansky on her role as a Peer Leadership Coordinator.-Sarah

Question: What made you pursue your teaching career?

Mrs. Saymansky: My mom taught kindergarten for 30 years, so it was in my blood. I loved playing teacher when I was little–my name was Miss Brown. I have both Elementary and Business Education degrees. I have taught both.

Question: What college did you go to?

Mrs. Saymansky: I actually went to Bradford Business School after I graduated from high school. I worked in accounting for eight years in Pittsburgh and went to Point Park part time. I decided I didn’t want to sit behind a desk all the time, moved home, and completed my Education degrees in 6 semesters at Geneva College. I was 34 when I started teaching. My only regret is that I didn’t start earlier. Things happen for a reason.

Question: What do you like most about teaching?

Mrs. Saymansky:  Definitely the students! You all bring me joy everyday.  I love teaching a course that you will need and use the rest of your life. Seeing a graduate later in life and they thank you for teaching them how to balance a checkbook–can’t beat that! Also the people I work with are great.

Question: What is one thing you don’t like about teaching?

Mrs. Saymansky: There is so much paperwork and testing now. It distracts from the teaching and doesn’t help the students in my opinion. It only takes up valuable teaching time.

Question: How would you define the Peer Leadership at New Castle Senior High School?

Mrs. Saymansky:  A group of students (grades 10-12) who are selected their sophomore year and have hearts of gold. They are willing to help anyone in the school and community.

Question: What interested you to be in charge of The Peer Leadership program?

Mrs. Saymansky: Mrs. Gibson was stepping down and asked me to take her place. I was very honored.

Question: What does it take to be apart of the Peer Leadership program?

Mrs. Saymansky:  You are nominated by the 7th, 8th and 9th grade teachers.  From there the top 10-12 students complete three essay questions. The top seven attend a 2-day training with the other new Peer Leaders from Lawrence County. The rest are still members. Once you are a member, you are always a member. You also must participate in our activities.

Question: What is your definition of Leadership?

Mrs. Saymansky: Someone who can help without being overpowering.  You need to be able to give and take and listen, listen, listen! You also can’t be afraid to take the initiative.

Question: What qualities does it take as a student to be chosen for Peer Leadership?

Mrs. Saymansky: Good behavior, caring, outgoing, friendly, honesty. You need to have a  heart of gold!