Mr. Greenland and his Culinary Success


Mr. Greenland giving instructions

Helena Bentas, Editor in Chief

Mr. Greenland has worked at Goffstown High School as the head of the Culinary Department for years now, but neither culinary nor teaching was his original passion. Currently, he has crafted a culinary program specific for GHS that meets the state requirements but also is coherent to the students he is teaching. The Goffstown High School Culinary program was nonexistent before Mr. Greenland arrived at the school. He originally became a member of the school community as a substitute teacher because it paid more than his food service jobs that he had previously. However, he now believes teaching is a more suitable career path for him. He is a teacher who both listens and responds to how his students learn and grow as individuals. 

Mr. Greenland first attended college with the intention of earning a business degree, which he did indeed obtain. After Mr. Greenland graduated, he started working in food service through restaurants. Although he enjoyed the thrill of cooking, he couldn’t live productively off the pay he received. Instead, he started working as a substitute teacher to subsidize the financial shortcomings of those jobs. Over time, he recognized his love for cooking and teaching could be partnered with one another and created a culinary program at the local school he taught at. He believes a characteristic of his that prompted him to create the program is his natural obligation to be caring towards others. 

Throughout his career, Mr. Greenland has had a profound positive impact on the students he has taught. Not only does the culinary program include the actual culinary curriculum, a culinary club exists as well for those unable to attend the class or who can’t fit it into their ordinary schedule. One such student is Brianna Essig, President of the Culinary Club and a former student of “Mr. G’s”, who now opts to take a directive study course with his class. She has expressed how Mr. Greenland has expanded her knowledge of culinary practices and general understanding of cooking. She believes that his “hands-on” approach to culinary, such as directly demonstrating understanding of the lesson previously taught, has proven invaluable to her learning. One of Mr. Greenland’s most rewarding experiences has been to watch the growth of some of his students from “a freshman to a senior- which is always enlightening.”

Though teaching can become emotionally straining at times, Mr. Greenland likes to have a healthy balance between his academic life and the stress that comes along with it. He makes an active effort to walk his dog for forty-five minutes, every day, to cope with the stress of the day. Additionally, an interesting detail of his personal life is how much he enjoys music. He both plays and listens to music. His favorite being Boston’s First Album. He believes the reason he is able to keep everything so balanced is because of his hobbies unrelated to culinary, as well as a “supportive family atmosphere.”

Culinary is a substantial part of Mr. Greenland’s life, however being a good father has brought him both joy and the necessary understanding to be able to have a career in teaching. Similarly, his teaching philosophy mirrors who he tries to aspire to be as a father. “Try to be a caring nurturer and understand that a lot of (high school) kids have challenges that they try to work through. Like everyone else. At a younger age, it can be rewarding, yet challenging.” A significant impact, and one of the many challenges kids have faced, is the COVID-19 pandemic. Though that experience may have been challenging to any number of students, and had a substantial impact socially and emotionally, Mr. Greenland believes Goffstown High School did an admirable and honest effort dealing with such circumstances. 

Mr. Greenland’s culinary course is an opportunity for those to learn necessary skills for adulthood outside of the rigorous academic atmosphere. His personal characteristics originally unrelated to cooking provide him with an understanding of those he is educating. His lessons help students grasp onto the knowledge they absorbed during class through “hands-on” activities. Though culinary may not have been his original intended path, it is the career path best fit for him.