Teacher Feature: Joe Coll

Teacher Feature: Joe Coll
Posted on 03/04/2020
Joe Coll

Ware Public Schools welcomed Mr. Coll in August 2004 as a Grade 6 Teacher.  When asked why he likes teaching in Ware he said “The students and parents in Ware are GREAT!  People here in Ware have been generous of their time and resources.  As a member of the Ware Middle School PTO, I’ve had the pleasure of working with parents for years and forming some fantastic friendships.”  Mr. Coll loves hearing from former students and learning about what they’re doing now.  A few short years ago, he had the good fortune to meet up with a former student in Charleston, SC who is a police officer.  Of that meeting he says “That’s just one example of seeing what great citizens our students have become.”


Mr. Coll graduated from Jonathan Dayton Regional High School in Springfield, NJ in 1978.  He then attended Kean College of New Jersey.  He graduated with a B.A. History with a minor in Army ROTC from Seton Hall University in 1985.  Mr. Coll continued his education at Antioch New England Graduate School where he received his M.Ed. Education in 1995.  Mr. Coll also served in the U.S. Army as an Infantry Officer.


Mr. Coll always had a passion for history and attributes it to hearing his parents’ stories from when they grew up.  His father was born in 1916 and his paternal grandfather was born in 1873.  His maternal grandfather was born in 1896 and emigrated from Italy to New Jersey in 1912, arriving the same week the Titanic sank.  He went back to Europe in 1917 as a member of the 78th Infantry Division and fought a few major battles of WW1.  His parents lived through the Prohibition and the Great Depression.  His father served on oil tankers during WW2.  He had voyages in the North Atlantic, participated in Operation Torch which saw the American Army invade North Africa, and sailed in the Red Sea, Mediterranean, and from 1944-1945 in the Pacific.  Mr. Coll says “Hearing my parents’ stories, how could I not love history?”


Mr. Coll and his wife recently celebrated their 31st wedding anniversary.  They made a “temporary” move to Western Mass from New Jersey in 1988 for graduate school.  They fell in love with the Pioneer Valley and bought a small farm in Wendell where they currently raise Icelandic sheep and laying hens.  When not in the classroom, Mr. Coll enjoys taking his sailboat out on lakes in the area and hiking with his wife and their dog, Roxy.  Along with Roxy, they also have two cats.  All three animals are rescues.  He belongs to the Harmony Lodge of Masons and Millers Falls Rod & Gun Club and is also a Civil War re-enactor with the Tenth Massachusetts Volunteer Militia.