Alaina Marsh, Stewardship teacher, developed a passion for the natural world early in life. Born and raised in rural New Hampshire to a family of outdoor enthusiasts, s he spent her formative years camping, hiking, canoeing, and generally romping around the wetlands, forests, and fields of the northeast.
Alaina graduated with a BFA in writing from Green Mountain College, an environmental liberal arts school in southern Vermont. She attended a semester abroad at Brunnenburg Castle in northern Italy where she studied ancient agricultural practices and traditional methods of food preservation. At Brunnenburg, she also had the incredible opportunity to study literature and poetry with Mary De Rachewiltz, daughter of poet Ezra Pound.
Before returning to school to earn an MEd in English education from Plymouth State University, Alaina pursued various life experiences, always leaning toward any opportunity to continue working and learning outdoors. She volunteered on conservation crews, taught skiing and snowboarding, and joined the crew at Cedar Circle Farm, an organic farm and education center in Thetford, VT. She also worked on an invasive plant management crew for Redstart Forestry in Corinth, VT, where she gleaned an incredible amount of knowledge in a short time about invasive management, native plant restoration, and common forestry practices of the northern woodlands.
Before she found Oliverian, Alaina spent four years teaching English at a small public high school in New Hampshire. In her previous position, Alaina did what she could to foster a sense of place in her students by incorporating nature writing and local history into her English and creative writing classes. She is excited for the opportunity to blend her myriad skills and passions into her position as stewardship teacher, and continue to instill in her students that sense of care, responsibility, and curiosity for the places they inhabit. These days, you will find her tending chickens, growing plants of all kinds, and wandering the woods. She currently resides on a Vermont hilltop in a beautiful home her husband built with their two dogs and ferocious cat.
What do you love most about Oliverian?
I love the diversity of curriculum, the care and dedication I’ve seen from staff, and the commitment to outdoor education on this beautiful campus at the edge of the White Mountains.
What motivates you to work with kids?
Much of my teaching philosophy stems from my own experience as a student. I excelled when I could develop a connection with a teacher or professor and felt my unique interests and approach to learning was encouraged. I also always tune in when I can tell an educator is really excited about what they’re teaching. I love having the opportunity to do the same for my students; to encourage them to follow what brings them joy, and to share what I am most passionate about with a younger generation.