Undergrad Alum Profile: Megan Murphy Lantz

From the Spring 2011 issue of Threads

Megan Lantz first embarked on her career path at Duke. In 2001, Professor Owen Astrachan invited the young undergraduate to be a teaching assistant for his CompSci 6 class, Introduction to Computer Science. Lantz was immediately bitten by the teaching bug, and became more and more involved in the Computer Science Department. She went on to become the head undergraduate TA for CompSci 6 for three years before she graduated in the spring of 2004.

Her teaching aspirations were put on hold when an investment-banking firm wooed the graduate, who completed a CS major and economics minor at Duke, to join their firm in New York City. Lantz took the attractive offer, but in less than a year, realized it wasn't the career for her.

"I had always wanted to be a teacher," she recalls, "so I decided to leave." She packed her things and headed back to her home state, Wisconsin. There, she attended Marquette University in Milwaukee and earned her Master's in Education.

It wasn't long before Lantz snagged a job teaching high school math at the University School of Milwaukee, a private secondary school within a mile of where Lantz grew up, and one of the top college preparatory schools in the United States.

Today, Lantz teaches numerous classes, including geometry and advanced statistics, and is the school's new academic technology coordinator, helping teachers to learn and utilize technology in the classroom. Her duties will include preparing teachers for the one-to-one laptop program, which the school plans to initiate in 2012.

"I love teaching, and my first experiences with it were at Duke," says Lantz. "I am thankful to the professors and students I worked with there, who were always inviting and supportive."