Marsha Rybin is the founding principal of High Tech Los Angeles, a college prep charter high school in Van Nuys. Before joining a Zócalo panel discussion about the effects of social media on our children—“Is the Internet Turning Our Kids Into Zombies?”—she talked about her days at UCLA, chocolate mousse, and students who chew gum.
Which principal from TV or movies is the most realistic?
The one in Grease.
What do you miss most from your student days at UCLA?
Everything. I miss being that young. I miss the freedom of being an adult but still not having actual consequences for your bad behavior. I loved that a lot. I worked at Alice’s Restaurant for a long time—I miss those good meals, the only meals I ate.
What superpower would you most like to have?
I’d like to be invisible.
What dessert do you find impossible to resist?
What’s your biggest pet peeve?
Gum cracking. Of all the things in the world, that makes me quite homicidal.
What teacher or professor changed your life, if any?
Albert Hoxie, a history professor at UCLA.
What salad dressing best embodies you?
Ranch. White with freckles, you know.
What is the first noise you hear in the morning?
My cat meowing.