Mr. Callesen Says Goodbye to UHS

One of UHS’s most beloved math teachers, Mr. Callesen, has made the decision to retire after this year. The Perspective gladly took the time to reach out and ask him all about his years spent at UHS and the years to come.

Q: How long have you been a teacher at UHS?

A: I have been teaching at University High School since 2000. Before that, I taught at Booth-Fickett for 15 years.


Q: Why did you decide to work at UHS in the first place?

A: I wanted to be challenged by a high performing group of students (be careful of what you ask for). Also, I heard that the students at UHS were accepting of all students regardless of their race, religion or sexual orientation and it seemed like it would be a wonderful environment to work in.


Q: What have been some of your favorite memories at UHS?

A: The successes of our Math Club and volleyball teams that I coached are very memorable. My fondest memories are of students who in the past had struggled in math, but through hard work and believing in themselves not only improved greatly, but enjoyed doing it.


Q: How has teaching at UHS influenced your life?

A: Working with the diverse population at UHS has made me a better person. I am much more able to see the world from many different perspectives.


Q: What will you miss the most about teaching after you retire?

A: I will miss working with our incredible students and teachers. I will not miss grading tests and homework.


Q: Could you describe your time at UHS in the form of a haiku?

Busy all the time

Working with amazing kids

Loved every minute


Q: What impact do you hope you have left upon UHS and its students?

A: I would hope that I taught our students that math can be fun.


Q: How will math club function after you retire?

A: The Math Club should function fine after I retire. The other math teachers have agreed to run the club with a cooperative system, so that it doesn’t fall on one person’s shoulders. We also have many strong competitors and club officers returning who will keep it going.


Q: What is the first thing you plan on doing after you retire? Are you excited?

A: The first thing I will do is to read a book for fun. I haven’t been able to do that for a long time. I need to do several jobs around the house including setting up my office to get ready for my new job which starts June 1. I will be running math competitions throughout the country. Also, my wife and I will take a nice vacation somewhere this summer.


Q: Looking back on all your years at UHS and teaching in general, is there anything you would’ve done differently? If so, what and why?

A: I probably would have incorporated more technology in my lessons. This is the way the world is moving and as teachers, we need to keep up.


Q: What final words would you like your students to remember you by?

A: It has been an honor to teach the students at University High School. Together, we have learned a lot of math, discussed many life lessons and laughed often. I want to thank my fellow teachers and my students for making me a better person. Now, get out your homework because we have a lot to do today.



  1. Inspirational, lovely, and sweet. There was a lot of thought that went into this article. Very interesting topics as well.

  2. Sad to see you go Mr. Calleson! Loved having you for math and volleyball! You really helped me transition when I transferred to UHS by helping me with these things. Enjoy your break and time off; it is well-deserved!

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