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TC Graduates Gallery

The 2013 TC Graduates Gallery features a diverse group of individuals from around the world, including a first-generation college student who is the grandson of farm workers; an Egyptian who helped design an instructional platform based on social networking for people in her country and across the Middle East; two former professional vocalists and performers who use music to engage children in their classrooms; a retiree embarking on a second career; and a dentist.

The graduates share a dedication to putting their TC degrees to work to improve the education, health, and well-being of young people and all those who struggle to surmount societal and economic inequities.  The newly minted TC grads credit their experience at the College for inspiring their passion to make a positive difference and giving them the tools and support to reach their goals.  

[Read more: full coverage of the 2013 TC Convocation]



Abena Koomson: A Teacher of NoteAbena koomson
If you’re within earshot of Gloria Abena Koomson when she moves on to her next job in education as an administrator or a teacher, do not be surprised  to hear her singing as she goes about her work.

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Barry Goldenberg: The Bus Stops HereBarry goldenberg
A doctoral student finds a personal connection to desegregation and spreads awareness of Harlem’s rich heritage

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Benjamin Pass: Filling a Gap in Dental EducationBenjamin pass
Benjamin Pass has wanted to become a dentist for as long as he can remember. Coming from a family of educators, including his sister and both grandmothers, he also wanted to teach.

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Brittany Jacocks: Turning a Music Career into TeachingBrittany jacocks
Brittany Jacocks calls herself a “career changer.” When she enrolled at Teachers College two years ago, she thought she was turning the page on her past life as a classical vocalist and pianist, and on a career in arts management in New York City.

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Chessa GrossChessa gross: Creating hands-on learning through a lens of social justice
As an undergraduate at Georgetown University, Chessa Gross helped organize low-wage food service employees into a labor union. Her motivations were personal.

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Cyndi Bendezu-Palmino: Standing Up to Be Counted
Cyndi bendezu-palmino
For Cyndi Bendezu-Palomino, who received her master’s degree this spring in Higher and Post-Secondary Education, growing up was a process of realizingjust what it meant to be “undocumented.”

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Daniela Orasel: Finding a Calling to Change LivesDaniela orasel

Growing up in the Sunnyside section of Queens, Daniela Orasel knew she would one day attend Columbia University. Her only uncertainty was about what she would study.

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David Wright: Probing Youthful Apathy at the PollsDavid wright
Most people go to graduate school to launch careers, but David L. Wright did the reverse.

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Diana Ruiz: Mentored for Success

Teachers College graduates make an impact in many ways – not least by mentoring future Teachers College graduates.

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Joyce Rafla: Bridging Difference, Raising Employment, through EducationJoyce rafla

As Joyce Rafla was about to email her application to Teachers College from her home in Cairo more than two years ago, the Egyptian Internet shut down.

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Marie SunMarie sun: Early Childhood Grad Wants to Apply TC Expertise to a Preschool in Dominican Republic

Marie Sun, a newly minted graduate of TC, would like to open a pre-school in the Dominican Republic, where children could have the benefit of the kinds of approaches to learning that she acquired in the Early Childhood Education Program at TC.

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Martha Santaella Sud: Developing Strategies to Help Students Swim
Martha santaella sud
Growing up in Caracas, Venezuela, Martha Santaella Sud learned to swim by being thrown into the Caribbean from the beaches of Oricao during high tide.

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Na Li: Modeling Changing in Order to Help Make It
Na li
Growing up near Shanghai, China, Na Li, who received her Ph.D. in Cognitive Studies in Education in May, says she was “a slow student” who while motivated was “not developmentally ready to learn” difficult concepts in math or the sciences.

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Saúl Martinez: Carrying on Chavez’s Fight Through Work in a Different Field
Saul martinez
“When I arrived at TC, I thought I was a lot more culturally competent than I was,” says Saúl Martinez.

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