New Faces Around GHS

Allie Schwartz and Riley Murphy, Managing Editor and Editor-in-Chief

There is no doubt that after the pandemic the culture of Gunnison High School (GHS) has changed. Many students have left and joined GHS, but they are not the only new faces around the school. 

Our school has gained three new student teachers: Ms. Lacie Wise, Mr. Conner Finney, and Ms. Bree Kemming. All of them come from different backgrounds and experiences but all connect within GHS. To get to know them a little better The Giddyup staff asked them a few questions and here are their responses:


Ms. Wise

  1. Being a GHS alumni, how do you think the school’s culture has evolved?
  2. What year did you graduate?
  3. Why did you want to become a teacher?
  4. Do you plan on staying in the gunnison school system?




  1. Being a GHS alumni, and coming back to this school, there is a lot that has changed, but a lot that has continued to embody the traditions and culture of Gunnison High School. One thing I have noticed is the class spirit and eagerness to get involved and support your classmates. This year I have seen so many people getting involved and supporting one another, and it is great to see such a supportive and uplifting culture return to Gunnison High School.
  2. I graduated in 2018.
  3. I have wanted to be a teacher since I was in the second grade. I have always had a strong love for helping people and a passion for school and education. Since starting my student teaching, I am reminded that there is no place I would rather be, and that teaching is something I was truly meant to do.
  4. My dream is to stay in the Gunnison school system and to teach at Gunnison High School. Since I graduated, my main goal, and the driving force throughout the past four years of college is that I would get to come back to this school and be a part of a school community that made such a genuine impact on me and who I’ve become. I hope to one day be a teacher here, and make a difference in this community!


Ms. Kemming

What do you plan on doing once you have completed student teaching?

I’m currently a manager at the Holiday Inn Express here in Gunnison, so I’m not in a huge rush to move into my career; although, I am extremely excited for that part of my life. I’m also getting married this upcoming summer, so I might take some time for myself to plan that part of my future. 

As for schools I’d like to work at, I’m definitely looking at Gunnison and places near Gunnison, like Canon City and Salida. The goal is to be close to family and also be able to settle down and find a place where my fiance and I can be comfortable in the long term.

Why did you want to become a teacher?

I decided to become a teacher when I started college. I was a music major at the time, and teaching started as a backup plan because I wasn’t interested in music as a stand alone career. I just wanted to be around it as much as possible. But when I started working at the Writing Center on Western’s campus, I realized that teaching was something that I really enjoyed, but that music wasn’t what I wanted to share with students, at least not as a full time job. There was something amazing about seeing students understand something they had been struggling with, or even just building some of the confidence they needed to succeed in college. Finding out that a student’s writing level directly correlated with how comfortable they felt as a writer was huge for me because then teaching writing became teaching life skills. Teaching became a way for me to grow as a person and see how awesome people could be, even if they didn’t realize it themselves. Do you know where you are going to teach in the future? Is Gunnison where you want to stay?

Why did you want to become a teacher?

Mr. Finney

  1. Where did you grow up and why did you move to Gunnison?
  2. What made you want to become a teacher?
  3. Do you plan on staying and teaching in Gunnison? Or would you like to teach somewhere else?


    1.  I grew up in Gunnison actually! I graduated from GHS in 2004 and went to college at Western State, from there I went to the University of Montana to work on my Masters of Mathematics. After a year of school in Missoula I moved to Bozeman to be a ski enthusiast.  And after three years in Montana I traveled to the west coast and spent several years in California, Oregon , and Washington,  after which I moved back to Gunnison. I have been back in the valley for four years and decided to pursue my passion of mathematics and teaching but to also stay in Gunnison. 
    2. I guess the reason I wanted to become a teacher is that I love to help others understand math and I really want to be a supportive member of the Gunnison community. After growing up here and moving back, I really want to see the education system I had when I grew up here get even better.
    3. I plan on staying in the Gunnison area! Hopefully Mr. Kattnig retires soon! Just kidding. Mr. Kattnig was my high school math teacher when I was at GHS and was one of my biggest influences when it came to wanting to pursue teaching.