Mrs. Rathgeber: the Head of the Yearbook and Mustang Messenger

Mrs. Rathgeber: the Head of the Yearbook and Mustang Messenger

Jaiden Herzog, Staff Writer - The Mustang Messenger

House 5 teacher, Mrs. Stephanie Rathgeber, is in charge of creating the yearbook and publishing content for the student newspaper. She is the key player behind the curtains when it comes to making the entertainment students commonly overlook. “I appreciate how hard working she is and how much she does for us,” said 15-year-old Sophmore, Willow Burkholder, a staff writer of the Mustang Messenger and student of Mrs. Rathgeber.

She started her tenure at McCracken County High School during the second year of the school’s existence, and, in that same year, founded the Mustang Messenger. She worked with MCHS journalists for 3 years before moving to Reidland Middle School as a librarian. She is back at MCHS as a Journalism and English teacher, after spending two years in Africa where she trained other teachers. “Africa was amazing; it was a different culture, a different experience. It was fun and eye-opening,” remarked Mrs. Rathgeber.

Upon her return, Mrs. Rathgeber found that the newspaper that she started had died out. So, this year, she hopes to revive it and make it a thriving news source again. “Knowing that we didn’t have the Mustang Messenger anymore just broke my heart. So, when they gave me Intro to Journalism, I decided, “you know what?”: we’re just gonna turn that into the newspaper. And then we’ll build it back from the ground up. This time, we’re taking a more digital approach and we’re kinda learning as we go. My hope is that next year, we will have a full newspaper class again,” Mrs. Rathgeber said in an interview.

Adding onto this, she plans to achieve this goal through the related classes she currently teaches. She instructs Introduction to Journalism, which writes articles for the Mustang Messenger, and Yearbook Pro, which helps to make the MCHS yearbook. In addition, she teaches Creative Writing and Senior English.

Continuing with that thought, Mrs. Rathgeber spends an enormous chunk of her time in order to make the yearbook. She only just became the head of the school yearbook, and she’s already putting double the time into it. She works on picture day and remakes picture days in order to organize the student body photos. She then works with her staff to construct the pages, and as many students may know; there is an encyclopedia of yearbook pages. “I would not want to spend my time making that huge yearbook. There are way too many pages. I can’t believe she does it,” said Eden Neighoff, a Freshman staff writer.

On top of that, Mrs. Rathgeber attended 3 colleges to be the teacher she is today. She did her undergraduate at Murray State University, and earned her Master of Literacy from the University of the Cumberlands. She went on to receive her Masters in Library Sciences from Western Kentucky University. She utilizes her intelligence and organizational skills when it comes to fulfilling her duties.

Furthermore, she is a mom to 4 loving children and a brilliant wife to House 3 teacher, Mr. Shaun Rathgeber. Her two identical twin girls, Jillian and Norah, get along well with her two boys, Emmett and Ezra. In the summer of 2004, Mr. and Mrs. Rathgeber met each other at a children’s summer camp in the Adirondack mountains of Upstate New York. They tied the knot in 2007 and were blessed with their first child, Emmett, in 2010. The rest of their children followed in the coming years.

Moreover, she has taught several kids that have gone on to be successful in journalism careers. Mrs. Rathgeber said, “I want to say I had somewhere between 8 and 12 kids in those first groups (that helped to start the school newspaper), and I know at least 4 or 5 of them went on to actually do careers in journalism. I had one student who works as an editor for a romance-book company in Cincinnati. A lot of kids have written for their college newspapers and a couple have gone into film. I’ve always been really proud of those kids.”

Overall, Mrs. Stephanie Rathgeber is an amazing teacher at McCracken County High School that we all owe a huge thanks to. She does so much we take for granted every day and throughout the school year. She is too often not paid the respect and recognition she rightfully deserves. The Mustang Messenger wants to give her a big “thank you.”