During his early-mid-twenties Sean had the opportunity to pursue many careers. While in college he was offered work from full time landscaping contractors, and after scoring high on the Northampton civil service exams, he had the opportunity to join their fire and police departments. But after much consideration he chose teaching, wanting to help teenagers to be successful in high school and lead happy and productive lives.
“Kids are funny. I like their outlook on life.”
“I thought it would be the best use of my time to be an educator, and I love the kids,” Sean said. “Kids are funny. I like their outlook on life.”
Sean was born at the Farren Memorial Hospital in Turners Falls, which was one of the last Catholic hospitals in the area.
“My parents lived in Amherst at the time, but my mom was religious and wanted me to be born in a Catholic hospital,” he said.
Sean’s father Bill, who lives in Ware, was a bookkeeper and a musician who had a band called The Endless Knights that “travelled across the country from Maine to Chicago to the tip of Florida.” His dad also owned a restaurant in Easthampton called Knightly’s Boston Pub, which was a small pizza and grinder place where local bands would play, including his father’s.
Evelyn, Sean’s mother, is a religious education coordinator in Northampton. His younger brother Shannon flies all over the world as a pilot for American Airlines. Sean also has two sisters; his older sister Kristen is a Boston lawyer, and his younger sister Sara is a writer living in New Orleans. Another brother, Ed, died when he was a baby.
Sean grew up in Northampton and played on the 1986 Northampton High School championship football team which won the Suburban League Super Bowl.
“I was impressed with the teachers, administrators, athletic department and the vocational and academic programs. I’m fortunate to work with an administration and staff that are responsible, caring and intelligent.”
“I’m very proud of that team,” he said.
Before his senior year began, Sean moved to Ware to live with his father and stepmother. The switch from the city life to the woods near the Quabbin was a drastic one; however, this switch inspired a greater connection and appreciation for nature. Upon graduation from Ware High School, Sean received art scholarships, of which he used to join the art program at Greenfield Community College where he later earned a degree.
Following GCC, Sean went to the University of Massachusetts Amherst and earned his bachelor’s degree in sociology. He then taught special education in Easthampton for over twelve years. While teaching, Sean continued his education earning honors as he obtained his special education master’s degree from American International College in Springfield.
Sean came to FCTS last school year after hearing good things about the school from friends.
“I heard there was a job opening and I thought I’d take a look at the school,” he said. “When I got here I was impressed with the teachers, administrators, athletic department and the vocational and academic programs. I’m fortunate to work with an administration and staff that are responsible, caring and intelligent- I’m continually impressed by their knowledge, skill and experience.”
As he began working at FCTS, Sean became equally impressed with its students.
“They impress me because of their ability to succeed academically while gaining real work experiences in their shops.”
“I love these students,” he said. “They impress me because of their ability to succeed academically while gaining real work experiences in their shops.”
Sean, who coached basketball and soccer at the Greenfield YMCA for fifteen years, has also gotten involved with coaching at FCTS. Last academic year he coached junior varsity girls’ basketball, and this year he coached varsity golf and varsity girls’ basketball.
A resident of Greenfield, Sean likes to travel, exercise, landscape, work on his house and spend time with friends and family. In the summer he manages his small landscaping company.
Sean likes to remind his students that because they go to FCTS they will have a number of options open to them when they graduate that many other students will not have.
“I tell my students they have a special opportunity at this school,” he said. “They get to graduate with a high school diploma and vocational training which allows them greater opportunity and access for future endeavors. They can go to college or right into their profession already having experience and training in their field. This puts many of these students ahead of the game.”