Sahuaro’s History Savant Mr. Rogers

Government teacher by day, JFK conspiracist by night.

Mei Dotzler, Editor

LA Chargers merch adorns his classroom, while he thoroughly explains the legislative and executive branches to his seniors. There’s a lot of layers to the government teacher in Room 224. Mr. Rogers is on his 2nd year of teaching at Sahuaro, and so far he’s doing an exceptional job.

Mr. Rogers with his dog, Chico.

History is his passion, and so is teaching, so getting to combine the two every day is the best of both worlds. Having graduated from the UofA with a bachelor’s in history and a minor in Spanish, the love for history has always been there. “I’ve always really liked history. As a kid I liked NFL History and I watched NFL Network, so I’d go around telling my family player’s stats and they’d be like, “How do you remember all this stuff?” As a result, history teachers in middle school and high school always left a slightly bigger impression on him than most. “In high school I had a really cool history teacher, Mr. Parra. I just liked what he taught about and those were always my favorite classes,” he said. “Basically, I like understanding why things are the way they are, and I like having a better opinion than the average person.”

After teaching 7th graders at Dulan and Stafford Middle School for a year, he says it was a blessing in disguise that he was transferred to Sahuaro. “I like high school more anyway. It’s easier and they’re more mature. I mean, you guys are adults. So I like it better.” As a byproduct of maturity, the most rewarding aspect of being a teacher is simply when students ask for help. “There’s something about watching a student slowly start to understand a concept that you introduced to them. Or when they come in on their own time for tutoring. That shows they want to learn even more.”

Having taught his first year of government online, surprisingly Mr. Rogers had no struggles regarding remote learning. “Technology, I mean I’m pretty young so it’s easy,” he said as he explained why he liked online. “I had more time to prepare what I was going to say and my lesson plans, and I felt there was more student interaction. But granted, I did feel nauseous after school a few times from staring at my computer so long.” That being said, he still thinks in-person is better for obvious reasons.

Besides fervently analyzing The Federalist Papers, Mr. Rogers has a plethora of hobbies, including video games, politics, and music. His favorite genres are 70s, 80s, 90s rock, and early 2000s hip-hop, anywhere from Billy Joel to J-Cole. However, in this interview, he wanted to make it clear that he supports all music genres, even country. And for evidence, he can say that as a little boy he dressed up as Garth Brooks for Halloween solely because they have the same birthday. Topping the charts on Madden NFL 22, Mr. Rogers is also an ardent gamer. Actually, after this interview, he had plans to go to Game Stop to trade-in some games.

Mr. Rogers as Garth Brooks accompanied by a guitar to complete the look.

As a history teacher, of course he’s biased towards a specific era. “My favorite time period is definitely Vikings. You get to see all the human interactions and technology and everything unfold through the lens of that era and I don’t know, it’s so cool.” But when asked who his favorite president is, he had conflicting answers. “My favorite president is probably JFK or Grant. But the best president is definitely Washington. He laid out the foundation of the country. I mean he didn’t even want to be president and yet he set the bar.” We also discussed our favorite presidential conspiracy theories, like Pearl Harbor and abnormal coincidences between Lincoln and JFK.

Despite not being here very long, Mr. Rogers has already become a student favorite, resonating with students with his chill personality and vehemence for history. As he finds his footing over the next few months, he’ll continue to share random political fun facts and gush over his fish tanks any day.