The student news site of Mount Carmel High School

The Caravan

The student news site of Mount Carmel High School

The Caravan

The student news site of Mount Carmel High School

The Caravan

Mr. McGovern returns to MC as a teacher

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Matthew Malloy ’25
Mr. David McGovern started teaching at MC this past fall. His son Gavin is a freshman.

Teaching had never been a part of his plans. However, Mr. David McGovern decided to come back to Mount Carmel and give things a chance in the classroom.

Mr. McGovern is a member of the class of 1990 at MC and his son, Gavin, is currently a freshman. Coming back to teach Algebra and Physics classes has reminded him of his high school experience as well as his pride for the Caravan. But this pride started long before Gavin stepped in as a freshman or Mr. McGovern started teaching. 

Mr. McGovern’s father graduated from MC in 1965 and his family grew up in the Beverly neighborhood, where many current students and alumni reside. 

“I loved that sense of community I had where I grew up,” said Mr. McGovern. “Having friends and family so close in that area around Beverly Park was great. I definitely wanted that same feeling in high school.”

After graduating from St. John Fisher Elementary School, Mr. McGovern went to MC and was curious about what he would want to do for activities and sports. 

“I was never a great athlete for traditional sports,” said Mr. McGovern. “But I loved being outdoors as a kid. I was involved in Cub Scouts and Boy Scouts and enjoyed camping a lot.”

Mr. McGovern’s passion for nature and the outdoors eventually led him to join the swimming and water polo teams as a freshman.

“My family had a lake house so I was in the water a lot as a kid,” said Mr. McGovern. “I figured I’d swim when I got to MC.”

While Mr. McGovern challenged himself in the water for sports, he also challenged himself in the classroom.

“I was in all honors classes for my entire time at Mount Carmel,” said Mr. McGovern. “I found myself in the nerdier group which felt just like that community I had grown up in as a kid.”

Mr. McGovern graduated from Mount Carmel in 1990 and went to the University of Illinois-Chicago the following year. While he may be teaching today, the idea of becoming a teacher wasn’t on his mind back then. Instead, he focused on engineering and physics, which led him to his next career path. 

“After I graduated from MC I bounced around but ended up not finishing my first time around,” said Mr. McGovern. “I left school and worked at AT&T for almost thirty years.”

At AT&T, Mr. McGovern worked on telephone poles but also learned a lot about engineering at the same time. While he didn’t expect to work there for almost thirty years, he was pleased that he found a job he enjoyed and one that also dealt with the sciences and math he enjoyed learning about in school. 

Mr. McGovern’s focus on engineering, algebra, science, and physics during his time at college as well as AT&T help him with what he currently teaches in the classroom. 

“Around eleven years ago when my daughter was born I started teaching whitewater kayak classes,” said Mr. McGovern. “I had a blast teaching kids how to kayak, which made me think about teaching in the classroom.”

In 2012, Mr. McGovern started working on getting a degree in education while still working at AT&T and teaching kayak courses. While he first went to UIC after graduating from MC, Mr. McGovern took a unique path with his education. 

“It took me twenty-two years and five schools to get my Masters in Education,” said Mr. McGovern. “I finally got it at National Louis University.”

Teaching was never Mr. McGovern’s main focus in life. In fact, he refers to kayaking as a major part of his life.

“Aside from my family, kayaking has always been my passion,” said Mr. McGovern. “When I was at NIU I joined an outdoors program and have been a certified whitewater kayak instructor. At certain times I’ve been the president of the Chicago Whitewater Association.” 

Mr. McGovern believes that growing up with a passion for nature as well as the kayak group at NIU made him want to become a certified instructor.

While being a teacher at Mount Carmel might’ve not been the first thing on Mr. McGovern’s mind after graduating in 1990, he still made it back to MC in 2023. In the future, he looks forward to continuing teaching in and out of the classroom, but he’s also focused on his son, Gavin. 

“I feel like I’ve reached a lot of my goals in life,” said Mr. McGovern. “Now it’s time for Gavin to find that same pride for MC I had when I was a student here.”

 

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About the Contributor
Matthew Malloy ’25, Staff Writer
Matthew Malloy is a junior at Mount Carmel High School. He resides in the Southside of Chicago in the Beverly neighborhood and attended St. John Fisher Elementary School. Matt is currently a member of the student council, The Merchant, varsity golf team, varsity volleyball team, and the Caravan Media Group in which he is the play by play announcer for all home football and basketball games. As for academics, Matt is in the top 10 for the class of 2025. He first gained interest for journalism by watching ESPN’s College GameDay and reading The Beverly Review. His favorite sports commentators are Dick Vitale, Gus Johnson, Ray Clay, and Jim Nantz. As for favorite sports teams, Matt likes the Chicago White Sox, Chicago Blackhawks, Chicago Bulls, Manchester United F.C., Chicago Bears, Notre Dame Fighting Irish, and his favorite golfers are John Daly, Bryson DeChambeau, and Collin Morikawa. His favorite band is the Red Hot Chili Peppers and his favorite album is The Dark Side of the Moon by Pink Floyd. Matt’s favorite movies are Goodfellas and Asteroid City while The Office, Freaks and Geeks, and Friday Night Lights are his favorite TV shows. He and his cousins are continuing the tradition and legacy of the O’Connor family at Mount Carmel as he is the nephew of Dan O’Connor ‘95 and grandson of Frank O’Connor ‘61 and Kathy O’Connor, who works in the spirit store and is an avid supporter of Mount Carmel.