Reilly Brings a Unique Passion for Teaching to Trinity


Reilly playing drums for his church.


   Throughout his time at UCF, Mathematics teacher Patrick Reilly always loved helping his peers understand ideas and concepts. Now, Reilly enters his sixth year teaching mathematics but this year, with a new class he’s never taught before — Advanced Multivariable Calculus.

   Throughout high school, Reilly continued to excel in math class but never developed a real interest until he took Calculus AB.

   “I was always good at math, I could do it, [but] it wasn’t always exciting,” Reilly said. “I really thought math was cool when I took Calculus in school. It seemed to sum up all of the math I had been learning up to that point and showed a lot of applications with it.”

   Although he attended Oviedo High School, Reilly isn’t originally from Florida.

   “I was born in Columbus, Ohio, and grew up in Dublin, a sub-area around there,” Reilly said. “But [I] only lived there till I was 4, [when] my dad got a job working at UCF, which is why we moved down to Florida.”

   Reilly took his interest in mathematics to UCF, where he discovered a passion for teaching. He took a job as a physics tutor for several semesters. 

   “I really loved that job, and that kinda sparked me into thinking about going into teaching,” Reilly said. 

   Reilly graduated from UCF and got his first two jobs at engineering firms Lockheed Martin and Mitsubishi Power Systems. However, he found these jobs less than satisfying.

   “When I was at the engineering jobs, it was fine, but I actually didn’t enjoy it,” Reilly said. “So when I was thinking about what I wanted to do, I was like, I really liked helping students.”

   Reilly became a teacher at Edgewater High School, where he taught AP Calculus, Pre-Calculus, Algebra I, and Geometry for five years. But when a teaching position at Trinity for Mathematics opened up, he jumped on the offer.

   While other teachers prefer lecture-based classes, Reilly decides to take a different approach to math that he thinks is more beneficial for the students.

   “I don’t like just talking at people because I think that’s boring for me and the students,” Reilly said. “So I like to be like ‘what do you think about this?’, ‘what do you notice here?’, ‘what do you think we should do?’”

   Reilly said that these questions and his example-based teaching style helps him better ascertain if his students understand a concept.

   Aside from teaching, Reilly loves working out at least five times a week. Additionally, he also loves playing the drums, something he finds time to do on his worship team at church.