Friday, 24 August 2018

Chris Kulin, (or as some OBs may refer to him - Mr Kulin) , arrived at Brighton in 2002 into Durnford House. After graduating from the College in 2007, he soon returned in 2012 as a teacher of biology.

He quickly became regarded as one of the College's best teachers. He served as School House Deputy Housemaster, afterwhich he moved to Abraham where he remained for his last three years as part of the Common Room at Brighton. He is sorely missed by staff and pupils alike, but we are delighted to hear that he is thoroughly enjoying his new role as Head of Science at Brighton College Bangkok. 

When you were at Brighton College, what did you want to be when you ‘grew-up’?

Science, and in particular Biology, quickly became my passion due to an inspirational teacher at Brighton College. This led me to consider many avenues in Science but I never thought teaching would be one of them.

What do you do now, and what does your job involve? 

After completing my degree in Biomedical Science at Warwick University, I decided to stay for a further year and complete a PGCE (Post Graduate Certificate in Education)which has led me into teaching. After relocating back to Sussex to teach at another school, I had the opportunity to work back at Brighton College, and I spent five great years teaching there from 2012-2017. I hugely enjoyed my time there but was lucky enough to be appointed Head of Science at Brighton College Bangkok, where I have been working with my wife, Hannah, for the last year. The Prep & Senior school only opened as we joined, and being the founding Head of Department has been a hugely exciting and rewarding experience. With the help of my team, we have set up the whole department from scratch. Our Science team grows to five in the next academic year and I look forward to starting back after enjoying all that Asia has to offer over the summer holidays.

What are the most rewarding and challenging parts of your job?

Without a doubt, the most rewarding part of teaching is seeing the growth and success of your pupils over the course of many years. From going on to study your subject at university, to studying medicine or even getting a grade in Science they didn’t think they were initially capable of, it is what makes me love my job. Hearing from pupils many years later or seeing their smiles on results day makes teaching a very rewarding job.

The most challenging part of my job is definitely reports and marking, which as a dyslexic learner, has never come naturally!

What are you most proud of so far?

Outside of work and those points I mentioned above, it has to be training for and running the Brighton Marathon in April 2016. For this I raised over £1000 for Pancreatic Cancer, a cause close to my heart after my wife’s father sadly passed away from the terrible disease.

What is your fondest memory of school?

I have many fond memories of Brighton College, but the the South Africa Rugby Tour and College sporting fixtures all stand out as real highlights.

Who was your favourite teacher and why?

Dr Patel! The most amazing Biology teacher, who brought the subject alive, inspired me and ultimately led me down the route into teaching. His stories, passion and belief helped me to excel in this subject and I always try to take what I loved about his teaching into my lessons to this day.

What was the best piece of advice you were given whilst at Brighton?

Realising not to judge a book by its cover. Not in the literal sense but most importantly with people.

What advice you give to your 18 year old self?

Being more open minded in terms or embracing different cultures, opportunities and people. Something I still need to continue to work on...

Is there a book, song or film that changed your life?

Ed Stafford - Walking the Amazon. I’ve always loved watching survival programs and reading books such as Bear Grylls, but Ed Stafford’s book on his experiences of walking the Amazon River really made think more about continuing to push myself outside my comfort zone. From becoming a teacher (something I never thought I would have the confidence to do), to running a marathon and moving to Bangkok (somewhere I had never been), these have all been experiences that have been outside my comfort zone but helped me to to grow as a person.

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