A Convocation, Honoring Faculty, Opens the Spring Term
Roxbury Latin officially opened its spring term on March 29 with a celebration honoring two faculty members whose commitments to the craft of teaching, the study of science, and the care of their students and colleagues are exemplary.
Dr. Peter Hyde, member of the Science Department since 2001, was installed as the Charles T. Bauer Professor in Science, and Dr. Bryan Dunn, Dean of Faculty and chair of the Science Department since 2020, was installed as the Deane Family Dean of Faculty, during a convocation in Rousmaniere Hall, with their colleagues and students, family and friends present.
“Today we honor the faculty,” began Headmaster Brennan, “the faculty writ large and two individual members of the faculty who in their good work are representative of all of their colleagues’ commitment to the boys in their care; to knowledge of and enthusiasm about their given disciplines; for the ability to marshal diverse pedagogies—or classroom approaches—in service to students mastering content and developing skills; and, finally, to represent a passion for teaching and learning, and in the case of our two honorees today, a passion for the beauty and complexity and utility of science.”
Between the communal singing of For the Splendor of Creation and a surprising, delightful rendition of Tom Lehrer’s The Elements—performed my Mr. Brennan, Mr. Opdycke, Mr. Nelson, and Mr. Piper—both Dr. Hyde and Dr. Dunn delivered powerful and poignant remarks, about the discipline of science, about the gifts and lessons of life—both big and small, and about their gratitude to the many people in their own lives who have contributed to their growth and blessings. Enjoy the complete addresses delivered by Dr. Hyde and Dr. Dunn in this video of the Convocation Hall.
Since 2001, when he was fresh out of Stanford’s PhD program, Dr. Hyde has served as an impressive science teacher, coach, and advisor at RL. His scholarly credentials were consistently formed during his years as a student at Deerfield Academy and as an undergraduate at Yale, at which he earned cum laude distinction in biology. Dr. Hyde has leveraged his athletic interests and talent by being an effective coach of soccer and tennis at RL. From his earliest days in our midst, Dr. Hyde has been a committed collaborator—working first and ever after at honing the Sixie science offerings in order that they expose new boys to the scientific method and the excitement of utilizing campus as a laboratory. Dr. Hyde has been generative in imagining an Honors Biology course in which working researchers and physicians interact directly with RL students, as our boys accomplish real research on behalf of sophisticated, challenging scientific propositions. He has championed an inquiry-based approach to scientific endeavor, and many of his own students have gone on not just to study science in college but to make their life’s work in laboratories and on behalf of causes that will improve humanity’s fate. Read the citation Mr. Brennan presented to Dr. Hyde.
Dr. Dunn began at RL in 2020 as Dean of Faculty, teacher of physics and Chair of the Science Department, and head coach of Varsity Cross Country. The extent of his leadership responsibilities speaks to his talent, commitment to school life, and capacity for hard work. Prior to RL, Dr. Dunn served at Xaverian Brothers High School at which he taught nearly every course offered in their science curriculum. Dr. Dunn also served as head of the science department and founded the diversity committee there. A fine musician, he directed various ensembles and productions at Xaverian, a natural outgrowth of his extended stint as the piano accompanist and musical director for Chicago’s Second City comedy troupe. A fine runner, Dr. Dunn served as a highly successful cross country and track coach there, as well. After attending William and Mary, he went on to earn a master’s degree, focusing on curriculum and instruction, at Boston College and a doctorate in curriculum, teaching, learning, and leadership from Northeastern. Despite his joining RL at the height of the pandemic, it was immediately obvious how effective Dr. Dunn was in his various roles. As Dean of Faculty, he has quickly earned the trust and admiration of his colleagues for his clear, empathic, kind leadership and deep commitment to the school’s mission. He stunningly embodies all the virtues one would hope to see in all faculty—deep commitment to scholarly pursuit, care for all kinds of students in all kinds of situations, and passion for the transformative potential of work in schools. Read the citation Mr. Brennan presented to Dr. Dunn.
Watch the entirety of the Convocation Hall, honoring Dr. Hyde and Dr. Dunn.
We are grateful to Ted Bauer and to the Deane family for their generosity toward the school and for the ability their gifts afford us in honoring our faculty in meaningful and important ways.