Believe: Achievement mirrors support

September 2014 Posted in People, School
Craig Swanson

Craig Swanson

By Vince Teresi   

Kennedy High School’s new principal Craig Swanson brings an energetic, positive and visionary outlook for the 2014-15 school year.

As part of a small high school, he said he “looks forward to knowing our students on a first name basis as we share our daily time together at Kennedy.”

Displayed on his desk is the word “Believe,” portrayed on a book cover.  Swanson is zealous about the message, especially in its relevance to the field of education and high school students.

He values the power of believing in one’s self and remaining steadfast in pursuit of personal goals. He plans to share this commitment with Kennedy students.

“Throughout my career, I have observed kids achieve things far beyond what they thought they could achieve. This is made possible when students have an adult who believes in them,” he said.

“When somebody lets you know that they believe in you, it makes you feel good, it helps prepare you to extend yourself towards things that you never thought possible,” he said. “On the contrary, when you know your teachers do not believe in you, it is devastating. At JFK, we will vow to believe in our kids and we know they are capable of outstanding things.”

Swanson is happy to be an active part of the community.

Craig Swanson,
Kennedy High principal

Family: Wife, Janelle, an elementary
school teacher; two daughters,
Madison and Caitlin.
High school: West Albany

Colleges: Bachelor’s degree, Montana State;
Master’s from Portland State University;
Administrative credentials,
George Fox University

Favorite quote: “Whether you believe you
can or can’t, you’re always right!”

Three self-descriptive words:
Energetic, passionate, and fun!

“I am definitely impressed with the beauty of the Mount Angel community and am thankful and humbled to be here,” he said with a warm smile. He admits through the years he has always been intrigued by the Oktoberfest village, and kept an admiring, curious eye on it.

When the opportunity arose for a new principal at Kennedy, he eagerly pursued the possibility. Touring the campus, he liked what he saw. He also liked what was to come.

“Passing a $10 million district improvement shows the unwavering support from the Mount Angel community for its school system,” he said. “It will be an exciting future for the three district schools.”

Swanson has an appreciation for the contribution of co-curricular activities within the overall high school agenda. Craig has coached girls basketball, cross country, and track and field teams. He also served as athletic director at Sprague High School in Salem for the past two years in conjunction with his position as vice-principal.

Swanson’s 15-years of classroom experience in Oregon includes service as a math teacher at schools in Scio, Portland, Myrtle Creek and Albany.

During leisure time, Swanson enjoys family-oriented activities with his wife and daughters including soccer, track, traveling, water sports, skiing and weight boarding.

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