Ms. Wortham follows new career path

Ms. Rachel Wortham- photo by Mr. Thomas Stambaugh

If you were walking in the halls and were greeted by a kind smile and subtle wave, it was probably Ms. Rachel Wortham. In just two years at Haverford, she has brought warmth and unity to the Upper School.

     “I came to Haverford because it is a great school in the area that I grew up in,” Ms. Wortham said. “I felt like I hit the jackpot when I got an interview at Haverford.”

       Despite her short tenure at the school, Ms. Wortham made the most of her time. She formed bonds with students in the English classroom and squash courts, and she helped establish a crucial faculty affinity group. 

     “It is always wonderful to see students truly interested in the work we do in class,” Ms. Wortham said. 

     Student participation often stems from strong planning and teaching energy, and Ms. Wortham provided just that. Especially in a discussion-based English classroom, she made sure each class was energized and, more importantly, forming memories together. 

     “I loved some of the goofy moments that happened in my classes, like one of my sophomore class’s inexplicable affinity for the small ceramic bird in my classroom,” she said. 

     Ms. Wortham appreciated the little things: the friendly conversations and inside jokes with her students. Creating an inclusive and uplifting environment, Ms. Wortham was able to foster growth in each of her students and players.

     “As a coach, I loved seeing captain Dan Chow battle it out to five games, not just once but several times, over the course of the season, and it was great to see all of the JV players improve throughout the season.”

     Sixth Former Chow said, “Despite being Ms. Wortham’s first year as coach, she took the helm of leading the team very well. She helped me grow as a player for sure, and we had fun along the way.”

“I felt like I hit the jackpot when I got an interview at Haverford.”

Ms. Rachel Wortham

     Her time here has not only benefited her students; Ms. Wortham has experienced personal growth as well. Spending time around often unpredictable young men has helped Ms. Wortham find her voice.

     “I have become more confident and assertive from leading a classroom these past two years,” Ms. Wortham said. “I have become more decisive, something that I often struggle with.”

     She most certainly became more assertive, evident by her co-founding role with Ms. Taylor Smith-Kan in the Women’s Affinity Group, an important anchor in the life of a boys’ school. 

    While Ms. Wortham has bettered both herself and the school community, her time has come, and her future differs from her current career path in an exciting way. 

     “Next year I will be participating in a Jewish service program. The organization is called Avodah. While in this program, I will be working as a Community Organizer at a nonprofit organization called HIAS that helps immigrants and refugees coming to America.”

     While many students benefited from Ms. Wortham’s warmth and effort, she will use her experience at Haverford to help those in need, a true testament to her character.

Author: Tyler Zimmer '21

Managing Editor Tyler Zimmer '21 has written for each section of The Index since 2018. He previously served as Arts Editor. In addition to journalism, Tyler plays baseball and golf, and he is often found working in the art studio.