Meet Our Staff: Ilse Morey, English Teacher

What is your role in the College?

My role in the College is as an English teacher and this year I’m teaching a Year 8 class and four Year 12 classes!

What was your career path to Santa Maria College?

My career path to Santa Maria began way back in 1967 as a Year 8 student! I graduated in 1973 and then in 2002 I was fortunate enough to come back to Santa Maria (the circle of Mercy was looking out for me) as an English teacher and I’ve been here now for 18 years.

What is your favourite thing about Santa Maria College?

Where to start in answering this question?  Of course, the location of the College and the physical environment in which staff and students work and learn cannot be ignored. The gardens were beautiful when I was a student here and even though they have changed and evolved over time, the roses in particular never cease to catch my eye when I walk into the building in the morning. 

My favourite things inside the buildings are of course the people; the staff and the students. I work with a truly wonderful and inspiring group of friends and colleagues, and spending time with them in conversation, laughing, discussing and debating all manner of topics and issues is often the highlight of my day. But of course, the students cannot be forgotten and collectively they make up the rest of my ‘favourite things’ at Santa. Every day they are funny, kind, inspiring, generous, dedicated young women and I love spending time with them and being part of their learning experience!

Which texts or ideas do you love teaching girls?

I enjoy all the topics and texts that the English department explores with the students – there’s a wonderful range of poetry, narratives, novels, Shakespearean plays, articles, films and all manner of other texts that we investigate and study with each year group. I enjoy every text type and unit of work that the subject explores and interrogates!

Which books are you currently reading?

 I have three books on the go at the moment. I’m revisiting Paul Theroux’s The Great Railway Bazaar first published in 1975 in which the author goes on an epic railway journey that begins on the Orient Express and takes him on train journeys through India, Malaysia, Japan and then the Trans-Siberian Express. It is a beautifully written travelogue in which the reader is vicariously taken on a great adventure with the writer.   Then I’ve also started Isabelle Allende’s The Japanese Lover which I’m looking forward to finishing once I complete reading Weapon by Lynette Noni –  a dystopian, speculative fiction story set in Sydney that is part 2 of the Whisper Series. I enjoy borrowing from the Santa Maria library so that I can recommend books to the students I teach.

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