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Getting to Know Your Community – Personal Interview with Dr. Schmidt

Doc Schmidt is a legendary English teacher working at Friends Academy. He is an open and friendly man, but how well do you really know your teacher? Despite the educational relationship a student or fellow faculty member may develop with him, there are many fun and interesting facts that are not widely known about Gary Schmidt. The following questions may fulfill some eager and wondering minds with information about this mystical man.

Have you ever been in love?

Doc. Schmidt: “Yes.”


What is your current relationship status?



Did you have a high school sweetheart? If so, how long did it last?

“Yes, one year.”


What is your favorite hobby?

“Watching YouTube videos.”


What is your biggest pet peeve?

“People who complain all the time.”


Who was your first love?

“My girlfriend in high school, at the time it felt like love, but it wasn’t super deep.”


If you could have any Christmas present what would you want?

“A really nice seaside house in California.”


Stripes or solids?



What is your favorite type of juice?



Describe a situation where you failed at something. How did you handle the failure, and what did you learn from it?

“I don’t really see life in those terms, any bad experience has something you can learn from. I wouldn’t call it a failure if you can learn from it.”


What is your favorite movie(s)?

“Back to the Future series”


Who is your favorite superhero?

“Olivia Fine is my favorite super hero.”


Why did you choose to work at Friends Academy?

“So I chose to work at Friends Academy because I was leaving my job in Boston,  and I really love being in big cities, but I also like having a little space I don’t want to be necessarily right in the middle of Manhattan.  So I thought this was ideal because I could be close to New York and still have like a nice community that was a little bit removed…  Also, when I came to interview here everybody was incredibly friendly, and students seemed to be really happy and it just seemed to be a really good fit!”


Where did you work before Friends Academy?

“… For about 7 years I worked at Boston University Academy, which is a high school that is part of Boston University. … I have taught a lot at colleges in general, I have taught at BU, I have taught at UC Berkeley, I taught at Holy Cross…”


What is a profession that you do not think you would be successful in holding?

“A profession that I could not possibly hold is to be a driver, like if it was a truck driver, or a taxi driver or anything like that, that was high stress; because A, I have terrible depth perception and if I ever try to drive a big car I run it into something, and B I have no patience for traffic and badf drivers and I think it would just drive me crazy in a very short time.”


Would you consider yourself to be a Type A or Type B personality?

“I am definitely a type B personality, 100%, not type A.”


How do you deal with stress?

“When I am stressed, I surf the internet, I listen to music, usually techno, electro… I don’t have a TV, so I don’t do that but I do love surfing the web and coming up with funny youtube videos…”


By Jessie Friedman and Olivia Fine

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