B.S. in Technical Communications from Northeastern University; M.S. in TESOL from City College of New York. Victor Abruzzese began his career in education as a bilingual teacher at P12X in the Bronx. Victor was also a member of the New York City Teaching Fellows. Since then he has worked with every grade level from Kindergarten to the 12th grade. He has also taught in all subject areas. He is currently the ESL teacher in a special education school in New York City in which he not only teaches but also performs in various administrative capacities. Victor aspires to lead a school that will provide children with the opportunity to grow in every aspect of their human potential.
B.S. in Zoology, B.A. in Philosophy and M.S in Management from University of Florida. Davina Allen, a Teach For America alumni, began her career in education in New Orleans, LA in 2004 where she taught Physics for one year. She was five days into her second year of teaching when Hurricane Katrina struck. She returned to the ruined city five weeks after the storm with renewed vigor, and has been tirelessly working for education reform since then. Currently, Davina teaches Physics at Eleanor McMain Secondary School. She is the former Vice President of the Board of Morris Jeff Community School, a charter school she founded with a group of parents, neighbors, and educators which opened its doors in the Fall of 2010. Davina's goal is to work with like-minded change gents to address the entrenched systemic issues which continue to lead to educational inequity.
B.A. in History and Africana Studies from Hamilton College; Master of Arts in Urban Education Studies from Yale University. Redell Armstrong began his career in education in Harlem, NY and taught many of the nation's most extraordinary and talented students and have assisted them in developing their intellectual and personal talents and abilities at the Frederick Douglass Academy. Among the various subjects that he has taught includes Advanced Placement United States History, English, and Computer Science. Redell also gained the opportunity to serve as the Social Studies chairperson, co-chair of the School Leadership Team, coordinator of the FDA-Edinaman Secondary School African Alliance, and a consultant for the Rewarding Achievement, a performance initiative that aims to improve the college readiness of low-income students. Currently, Redell teaches Social Studies in New Haven, CT and aspires to foster meaningful communities of learners who desire to realize their fullest potential and to transform the world in their visions.
B.A. in Health & Human Studies from SUNY Buffalo with a concentration in Early Childhood Education; M.Ed in Special Education from University of Vermont. Carolyn Ban began her career in education in Buffalo, NY as a preschool teacher. While studying inclusive education theory and practice at UVM, Carolyn formed a deep passion for working with students with special needs. She has taught in NYC public schools for the past seven years. Carolyn's experiences include teaching in District 75 Special Education programs and co-teaching in a collaborative team teaching setting for four years. Carolyn also served as a mentor to new teachers and facilitated development of curriculum within her school. Carolyn currently teaches K-5 students who receive Special Education Teacher Support Services and provides staff workshops focusing on IEP development and best practices at PS 89 in Manhattan. Carolyn's goal is to be a supportive leader in an urban school where she can foster the growth of teachers and students.
B.A. in Print Journalism from Clark Atlanta University. Candice Bobo began her career in education in Washington, DC and taught English 5 years before transitioning into leadership roles. Sine then she has served as Academic Director, Director of Student Affiars and Comminity Affairs Liason. Currently, Candice is the Dean of Students at Thurgood Marshall Academy in Washington, DC and aspires to improve the education system in her community and nurture a lifelong love of knowledge in children.
B.A. in Mathematics and Secondary Education from University of Michigan. Brandon Boles began his career in education in Fredericksburg, VA teaching Analytic Geometry and Concrete Algebra. Brandon is also a member of several organizations that create improvement and progression for his school community - including mentoring endeavors and multicultural initiatives. A Rockefeller Brothers Fund Finalist, Brandon currently teaches at James Monroe High School while spending his summers an Assistant Instructor for the University of Michigan in Ann Arbor, MI and aspires to develop and create a high performing urban charter school for young men to maximize performance while also gaining the social skills needed to flourish into adulthood.
B.A. with honors in History from Trinity College. Christopher Bostock began his career in education in New Haven, CT and taught History for two years as part of the Teach for America: Connecticut Charter Corps. Currently, Christopher teaches history and serves as Dean of Students for Achievement First at Amistad-Elm City High School in New Haven, CT and aspires to one day open and run his own college-prep urban charter school.
B.A. in English Literature from The University of Connecticut; M.S. in Urban Education from Mercy College. Caitlin Boyle began her career in education in the Bronx, New York and has taught Elementary Special Education for the past 4 years. Caitlin was also a member of New York City Teaching Fellows and remains active in the organization as a Fellow Ambassador for Recruitment. Currently, Caitlin is an Integrated Special Education Teacher at PS 23 - The New Childrens School, in Bronx, NY and aspires to become a leader for educational equity in the area of Special Education, with a strong focus on urban school populations
B.S.Ed in Middle Childhood Education from Georgia State University; M.S.Ed. in School Counseling from Long Island University. Cheris Bradsher began her career in education in Jamaica, NY and taught math to 7th & 8th grade students for 3 years. Cheris was also member of National Council of Math Teachers and the National Association of College Admissions Counseling. Currently, Cheris teaches 10th Grade math at The Green School in Brooklyn, NY and aspires to open a single sex academy middle/high school (grades 6-12) in an urban education environment.
B.A. in English Language & Literature, Spelman College; M.A. in English Education, Teachers College of Columbia University. Valerie Cadet Simpkins began her career in New York City public education over nine years ago. She currently serves as a founding teacher at a charter school in the Bronx. Valerie has contributed to the institution's growth academically, as High School English Department Chair, and culturally, as High School Team Leader. Valerie's interest in educational leadership stems from her belief that a thriving school community must be a collaboration of inspired student and adult learners. She aspires to help shrink the achievement gap by expanding the creative capacity of all readers, writers, and educators.
B.A. in Sociology with a minor in African-American History from New York University; M.A. in Elementary Childhood Education from Mercy College. Eduardo Calderon began HIS career in education in Bronx, NY and taught after school English classes for ESL students 2 years. Eduardo was also member of New York City Teaching Fellows. Currently, Eduardo is a 6th grade English Language Arts (ELA) Nonfiction teacher at Hyde Leadership Charter School in Bronx, NY. In addition, he has contributed to developing the Nonfiction English Language Arts curriculum, is the lead teacher for an after school enrichment program and is heading a new teacher support project.
B.A. in Comparative Literature with a minor in Women’s Literature/Spanish from Plymouth State College; M.A. in English Literature from Southern Connecticut State University. Tara Michele Cass began her career in education in San Diego, CA and taught English 2 years. Tara Michele was also a member of the Antion Council of TEachers of English (NCTE). Currently, Tara Michele is an Advanced Placement and Honors coordinator and English teacher for grades 9-12 at Cooperative Arts and Humanities in New Haven, CT and aspires to start a Global Studies High School.
B.A. in Sociology with a minor in Education and Public Policy from University of California at Berkeley; M.A. in Curriculum and Teaching Department: Literacy Specialist Program from Teachers College of Columbia University. Myra Castillo began her career in education in Berkeley, CA while serving as an AmeriCorps member. During this time, she helped to connect college students to local elementary schools to provide small group literacy instruction and become a part of helping to narrow the educational gap. Myra was also a 2004 Corp member of Teach for America in the Bronx where she taught 2nd grade and continues to serve the children in the community. Currently, Myra is a Literacy Coach at Marjorie H. Dunbar, P.S. 126 in Bronx, NY and aspires to become a positive agent of change through educational leadership to provide students with an education that will guide them in reaching their highest potential.
B.A. in English Literature from The University of Connecticut; M.S. in Urban Education from Mercy College. Caitlin began her career in education in the Bronx, New York and has taught Elementary Special Education for the past 4 years. Caitlin was also a member of New York City Teaching Fellows and remains active in the organization as a Fellow Ambassador for Recruitment. Currently, Caitlin is an Integrated Special Education Teacher at PS 23 - The New Childrens School, in Bronx, NY and aspires to become a leader for educational equity in the area of Special Education, with a strong focus on urban school populations
B.A. in Music, Manhattanville College; Master of Professional Studies in Elementary and Special Education in the Dual Degree Honors Program, Manhattanville College. Jeffrey Cole began his career in education in the Bedford Central School District as an elementary school teacher. He was an original student of Today's Students Tomorrows Teachers and most recently a board member. Presently, Jeffrey is an eighth grade special education teacher, Extended School Year teacher/coordinator, Department Chairperson for Special Education and member of the leadership cabinet at Seven Bridges Middle School in Chappaqua, NY. He passionately believes that all students can learn and is working towards obtaining the skills needed in order to create a positive culture of learning and growth for both teachers and students.
B.A. in History from University of Massachusetts; Graduate Coursework in Teaching Strategies for the Inclusive Classroom from Simmons College. William Cooke began his career in education in Charlestown, MA and taught Math and History 2 years. William his career teaching High School Math at City on a Hill Charter School in Boston, MA. Currently, William is the Director of Grades 7 & 8 at Democracy Prep Charter School in Harlem, NY and aspires to open his own middle school campus in the near future.
B.A. in Jurisprudence from Oxford University; M.S.Ed. in Childhood General Education from Bank Street College of Education. Paul Deards began his career in education in New York, NY and taught 4th grade and then 3rd grade. Currently, Paul is the 6th Grade Associate Teacher in Math at The School at Columbia University in New York, NY and aspires to work in administration in high needs elementary school in NYC.
B.A. in English and History from Columbia University; M.S. in Teaching from Pace University. Courtney Diamond began her career in education at Central Park East High School and taught English for three and a half years. Courtney was also member of the New York Teaching Fellows. Currently, Courtney teaches 11th and 12th grade English and Journalism at Central Park East High School in New York, New York and aspires to be an innovative leader that improves staff culture, development and learning.
B.A. in History with a minor in creative writing from SUNY Geneseo. Danielle Dornbier began her career in education in New Haven, CT where she taught 7th & 8th grade science from 2006 - 2008. Danielle was also member of Teach for America's charter corps in New Haven. Currently, Danielle is a 7th & 8th grade science teacher, and the College Prep program coordinator at Elm City College Prep Middle School, an Achievement First school, in New Haven, CT and aspires to continue to effect change in education reform both inside the classroom and through various leadership opportunities.
B.S. in Elementary Education from Pennsylvania State University. In college, Lauren Ellis was part of a unique experience that partnered Apple Computer, Penn State and The Philadelphia School District, which allowed the student teachers to help reform the school they were working in. The goal was to improve the educational experience for the students at the school and prepare students for success in the 21st century. This program served as the catalyst to her career in reforming urban education. Currently, Lauren teaches first grade in Newark, NJ, at New Horizons Community Charter School where she began her career in 2007. Since being there, Lauren has created an extracurricular dance program for the students, served on an intervention planning team, and created a school wide discipline form for the school. Lauren aspires to run her own charter school one day.
B.A. in American Studies with a concentration in Urban Education and a minor in Mathematics from Wellesley College. Shereen Escovitz is currently a mathematics teacher at Medford High School in Medford, MA. As a faculty advisor, she has restored student participation in the Math Team and has led students in community service activities through the Key Club. She is a member of Medford High School's reaccreditation team. Shereen aspires to further develop her leadership skills and utilize them in roles that will make significant strides toward improving public education.
B.A. in International Relations, Stanford University; M.A. in Education, Stanford University. Since graduating, Victoria Fayer has taught public school in California for four years and is currently a 4th grade teacher. She is the co-advisor of Student Council and is on her school's teacher-principal collaboration team. Additionally, she serves as secretary on the executive board of the district's teachers association. Victoria aspires to be an administrator who works with students and teachers to create a rich and collaborative school environment.
B.A. in Psychology and History from Williams College; M.A in Special and Childhood General Education from Brooklyn College. Victoria Fletcher-Smith began her teaching career as a NYC Teaching Fellow, serving as an elementary special education teacher. Victoria is currently a Special Education Teacher at Meyer Levin, a performing arts junior high school in Brooklyn, NY. In addition to teaching, she serves as the IEP teacher, and new teacher mentor. Victoria believes that school leaders are powerful advocates and agents of change, and hopes to use the knowledge obtained in this program to open her own school in the future.
B.A. in English from Haverford College. Meredith began her career in education in Newark, New Jersey where she has taught for four years. Meredith was also member of Teach for America in Newark. She currently serves as the co-chair of her school leadership committee and is the head varsity girls' basketball coach. Currently, Meredith is a 10th grade English teacher at Technology High School in Newark, NJ and aspires to become an effective school leader.
B.A. in African American Studies and a minor in Criminal Justice from Georgia State University; M.A. in Diplomacy with concentration on International Terrorism from Norwich University. Syntyche Francella-Alston works at August Martin High School in New York as Global Studies teacher, Credit Recovery Social Studies advisor, Achieve Now Academy and Saturday school teacher, mentor, and Health Initiative coordinatior. Syntyche believes that school culture and parental involvement must work in concert for student success. She seeks to learn the skills to be the type of administrative visionary that can create such cohesion, producing students eager to learn, encouraged by community involvement and support.
B.A. in Public Relations from Alabama State University; Certificate in Elementary Education (P-5) from Agnes Scott College. Tanasha Franklin began her career in education teaching kindergarten and currently teaches first grade at E. Rivers Elementary in Atlanta, GA. Tanasha is a 2003 Teach for America alum and has served as a Learning Team leader, Curriculum Specialist, and Resource Room Specialist for Atlanta's Summer Institute. She taught English for 1 year with the Japanese Exchange and Teaching (JET Program) serving elementary and middle school students in Miyazaki, Japan. Tanasha aspires to lead and enhance core partnerships in education by strengthening awareness and collaboration within professional learning communities.
B.A in English and American Literature with a minor in Sociology from New York University; M.S.Ed. for Teachers from Pace University. Eric Fraser began his career in education five years ago in Brooklyn, NY as an English teacher at a small public high school where he still teaches today. Eric was also a member of the New York City Teaching Fellows. Currently, Eric is the lead English teacher at Freedom Academy High School in Brooklyn, NY and aspires to lead a secondary school that is grounded in the principle of teaching literacy across the curriculum and which also affords students various opportunities to practice being well-rounded, insightful and responsible members of any community they belong to.
B.S. in Education and Social Policy from Northwestern University. Steven Frederick began his teaching career as a 2004 Teach For America Corps Member in San Jose, CA where he taught 5th grade for four years. In 2008, Steve joined KIPP Bayview Academy in San Francisco, CA and currently works as the 6th grade math teacher and Grade Level Dean. He looks forward to gaining the skills needed to lead teachers and students to high levels of academic achievement.
B.A. in Mass Communication, Loyola University. Dana French's professional goal is to start a secondary school in the New Orleans area, which offers a strong, comprehensive curriculum that integrates the Arts. She has worked varying degrees in non-profit management with a wealth of experience and understanding in program development, education and youth sustainability programs. She has also done extensive community collaboration work.
B.A. in Religion from Columbia University. Upon graduating Jose Fuentes was accepted to Teach for America where he started his career as an educator at McKinley Elementary School in Newark, where he teaches fourth grade self-contained classroom. Jose has worked as a Corp Member Advisor for Teacher for America for the past two summers. Jose has been the chairman of the school leadership council for the past three years, and he is currently the lead mentor teacher in his school for the Newark Montclair Urban Teacher Residency Program. Jose aspires to become an effective school leader who is able to create an environment of learning, cooperation, and reflection for all students, teachers, and stakeholders.
B.A. in Spanish from Cornell University; M.A. in Teaching - Secondary Spanish from American University. Marielys began her career in education as a Teach for America corps member in Washington, DC, teaching Spanish. She has taught Spanish levels 1-3 during the past four years. Currently, Marielys teaches Spanish 3 and is the Spanish Department Chair at Thurgood Marshall Academy in Washington, DC. She aspires to lead a school that strongly intertwines the social and intellectual needs of students within a rigorous academic program.
B.A. in Psychology, New York University M.A. in Elementary/Childhood Education, Teachers College, Columbia University Ayanna began her career in education as a 3rd Grade Associate Teacher at the Little Red School House in Greenwich Village. After a year at Little Red, she spent the next couple of years continuing her work with 3rd Grade students through the New York City Department of Education at PS/IS 268 in Jamaica, the school she currently calls home. Now in her third year at her school, she has moved out of the classroom and into the position of Literacy Coach, professionally developing her colleagues working in grades K-8, serving on the school's cabinet, and facilitating Inquiry Team studies. Ayanna has fully embraced the opportunity to participate in this leadership role in her building, always looking for ways to continue to grow and push herself in the field. In the not so distant future Ayanna aspires to be the leader of her own school that prides itself in nurturing children academically, socially, and emotionally en route to success!
B.A. in Sociology and Diversified Liberal Arts from UCLA. Ms. Mimi Guzman completed a Bilingual Credential through California Polytechnic University, Pomona, and a Reading Certificate through UCLA Extension. Mimi has taught Pre-school through 5th grade and has conducted over 1000 hours of Intervention. She has served as a Pilot Teacher, Committee Chair, Science Lead Teacher, Coordinator for the Mother-Daughter program, and Literacy Coach. A National Board Certified Teacher, Mimi has assisted her colleagues in achieving National Board Certification. Her goal is to improve academic achievement for all students.
B.A. in History from University of North Carolina at Wilmington; Social Studies Certification from University of North Carolina at Wilmington. Sarah Hatter began her career in education in Wilmington, NC when she completed her student teaching at New Hanover High School. She taught Inclusion and Honors Civics and Economics. Sarah was also member of Teach for America in Charlotte. Currently, Sarah teaches Standard, Inclusion, and Honors Civics and Economics at Phillip O. Berry Academy of Technology High School in Charlotte, NC and aspires to be an effective leader at a public or charter high school.
B.A. in Philosophy from Cornell University; M.S. in Education from Teacher U at Hunter College. Jessica Hayes began her career in education in Duncan, MS and taught first grade for two years. Jessica was also member of Teach for America. Currently, Jessica is a Fourth Grade Lead Teacher at Excellence Boys Charter School of Bedford-Stuyvesant in Brooklyn, NY and aspires to lead a school in a community serving at-risk students.
B.A. in Government and Spanish from Georgetown University; M.A. in Teaching from American University with dual certification in Spanish and Social Studies. Prior to teaching full time, Michael Hendricks worked for the United States Department of Justice Office of Consumer Litigation. Michael began his career in education in Washington, DC teaching elementary and middle school students in a dual language Spanish immersion program at an international school. He is a member of the Capital Gains program as part of the Alliance for Quality Urban Education. Currently, Michael is a high school Spanish and Social Studies teacher at Thurgood Marshall Academy in Washington, DC and is the Varsity basketball coach. He aspires to be a future school leader and reformer.
B.S. in Business Administration from University of Southern California; M.S. in Elementary Education from St. Joseph's University. Allison Henkel began her career in education in Philadelphia, PA and taught 8-11th grade math for 3 years where she also served as the school's Testing Coordinator and Math Teacher-Leader. Allison was also a member of Teach for America. Currently, Allison is the Family Resource Center and After School Program Director at Think College Now in Oakland, CA and aspires to become a school leader.
B.S. in Finance from Hampton University; M.A. in Special Education from City College of New York. Tyrone Iton began his career in education in Paterson, NJ and taught 6th grade Language Arts for 3 years. Tyrone is also a member of the New York City Teaching Fellows. Currently, Tyrone instructs students in Algebra I and English 1 at Bronx High School of Law & Finance in Bronx, NY and aspires to open a school in an economically diverse community.
B.S. in Psychology Neuroscience from Duke University; M.S. in Adolescent Education from Pace University, in conjunction with Teach for America. Michael Johnson began his career in education at Fordham High School for the Arts, in Bronx, NY, as a Mathematics Teacher. His expertise extends across all secondary level mathematics curricular including: Algebra I & II, Geometry, Trigonometry, Pre-Calculus and Calculus. Currently, Mike serves in various leadership roles including: Math Coach, Chairperson for the School Leadership Team, and Technology Coordinator. Mike aspires to develop his school leadership abilities via curriculum development (with the integration of technology) and policy design regarding the expansion of data systems and reporting metrics, to empower teachers and students with effective learning opportunities.
B.S. in Elementary Education and Mathematics from State University of New York at New Paltz; M.A. in Teaching Literacy from Mercy College. Shantel Johnson began her career in education in White Plains, NY and taught 6th grade math for one year. There, Shantel lead the Student Government Council and became a District Technology Professional Development Instructor. Currently, Shantel teaches 5th grade at George Washington Elementary School in White Plains, NY and serves as a team leader in professional development. Shantel aspires to have her own branch of internationally inspired schools to better students' learning while providing more exposure to opportunity.
B.A. in Political Science with minor in Policy Studies from University of California, Los Angeles Upon graduation, Tanya Johnson began her career in education in Compton, CA as a teacher of Math and Science nine years ago. In 2004, she moved to the east coast and successfully worked for five years to close the achievement gap in mathematics at North Star Academy (Downtown) in Newark, NJ. In maintaining her commitment to serve students (and parents) attending schools in high needs districts, Tanya has recently transitioned into a teacher leadership position as Staff Developer at New Heights Academy Charter School in the Washington Heights community in New York. Tanya hopes to blend her interests in the field of law with her experiences as a growing leader in education to protect the interests of students, parents and teachers. She aspires to develop a public school model that will radically transform struggling institutions in high needs areas into effective learning communities. Such a school would produce 21st century critical thinkers who develop their strengths and who connect with and become leaders in their community.
B.A. in History, Duke University; Teacher Certification Program, Duke University; M.S., Adolescent Education, Pace University. Lauren Jonas began her career in education in Durham, NC, where she taught Social Studies at the high school level. She was a 2005 Teach for America Corps Member, and has continued to teach at her placement middle school, Mott Hall IV School in Brooklyn, New York. She is currently a lead Social Studies teacher at Mott Hall IV, and serves on the School Leadership Team, as well as the Inquiry Team. Lauren has worked to educate the students at her urban school about the world around them through sponsorship of an Invisible Children Club, a service based club, which organizes fundraising efforts to help the victims of the civil war plaguing Uganda. Lauren aspires to help future generations define themselves as global leaders and well-rounded citizens.
B.A. in Public Relations, Iona College; M.S. in Childhood Education and Students with Disabilities, Pace University. Jaime Jones began her career in education as a New York City Teaching Fellow at PS 41 in the Bronx. During her four years at PS 41 she has utilized her Dual Certification in both Special Education and General Education; having taught in the CTT, Self- Contained and General Education classroom settings. She has also served as her school's UFT Delegate and as a member of the Data Inquiry and Quality Review teams. Jaime currently teaches Special Education at PS 41 and has devoted her time this year to helping underperforming students by teaching After School as well as the Saturday Academy. Jaime aspires to lead a school where students are challenged both academically and consciously by a team of dedicated teachers with the hopes that students not only leave with an intellectual edge but also recognize their full potential in the world.
Michelle received her B.A. in Political Science and Human Rights from Barnard College. Michelle Kagan began her career in education in 2004 teaching 4th grade in the New Orleans area. Michelle served as a School Director at the Houston Summer Institute to train new teachers. In 2008, Michelle co-founded Achievement First Brownsville Elementary in Brooklyn, New York, a public charter school for kindergarten through second graders, where she currently serves as the Academic Dean.
B.F.A. in Theatre Studies from the University of Texas; certified in theatre and math. Brendan Kelley discovered that education was his calling while working with AmeriCorps in the Austin housing developments' family learning centers. He began his career in education in Friendswood, TX and has taught theatre for seven years. Before that, he lived in Seattle, WA working as an actor and in community outreach with the Open Door Theatre and Seattle Children's Theatre. Brendan is a member of the Texas Educational Theatre Association and was also selected to his district's Teacher Leader Academy. Currently, Brendan is director of the theatre program at Wylie High School in Wylie, TX and aspires to be a high school principal.
B.S. in Type 10 Certificate of Special Education K-12 from Eastern Illinois University; M.S. in Designing Science Curriculum from Illinois Institute of Technology. Brittany Kinser began her career in education in Chicago, IL and taught high school science classes for nine years years. Brittany was also a member of NSTA and CEC. Currently, Brittany is the Founding Science Instructional Leader at Perspective IIT Math and Science Academy in Chicago, IL and aspires to be an effective principal one day.
B.S. in Childhood and Special Education with a concentration in International Studies, SUNY Geneseo; M.A. in Literacy from Hunter College. After graduation Kelli Knople spent time traveling overseas and working with children in Australia. Upon returning to the states she taught 4th grade in Southern Florida, working with English Language Learners and supporting the school with their special education program. Kelli then moved to NY and began teaching in the South Bronx, where she was a differentiation leader and curriculum planner. Currently she is teaching at NEST+M, one of New York's Gifted and Talented schools, contributing to the development of the Literacy program and the creation of a community service program for elementary students. Kelli hopes to use her experiences in diverse educational settings to become a school leader in an urban setting where diversity is celebrated and service is honored.
B.A. in Environmental Studies from Bates College; M.A. in TESOL from Teachers College of Columbia University. Brian Knudsen began his career in education in Sichuan, China as a member of the U.S. Peace Corps. Currently, Brian is an ESL teacher at Lower East Side Prep, HS 515, in New York City. He has served in various roles at his school, notably the testing coordinator, athletic director and coach.
B.A. in English and Communications from Virginia State University; M.A. in Media Ecology, Communications and Film from New York University School of Education; M.S. in Special Education from City College of New York Adhana Lahab-Guggino began her career in education in Bronx, NY and taught Literacy and English Language arts to 6th grade students in the summer of 2007. Adhana is also a New York City Teaching Fellows. Currently, Adhana is the Special Education Liaison and a teacher in Special Education 9th grade English Language Arts, Math, and Social Studies at The Marie Curie School for Medicine Nursing and Health Professions in Bronx, NY and aspires to become an administrator who will continue to work to improve moral, social environments as well as the quality of education for underserved students.
Judy received her B.A. in International Relations from the University of Pennsylvania. Judy Lavi began teaching through Teach For America. She has taught second grade at East Oakland Pride Elementary in Oakland, CA for three years. In that time, she has chaired the Faculty Council, served as the vice chair of the School Site Council, and helped found the "Sunshine Committee", a social committee that aims to build a positive school culture. She believes in the necessity for inspired and strong leadership in failing urban schools in order to provide underserved racial and ethnic minorities the rigorous education and long-term opportunities they deserve. Her goal is to research effective models for creating high performing schools and use that knowledge to run her own school in which students are held to high expectations for achievement regardless of their background.
B.S. in Urban Planning from Hunter College; M.S. in Childhood Education from New York University. Christopher Lee began his career in education in Bronx, NY and taught 3rd grade for 2 years. Christopher also served as a Data Specialist in his third and fourth years, acting as a liaison to the Principal to disaggregate data and implement various teaching practices within the school community. As a Data Specialist and head of the Data Inquiry Team, Christopher implemented instructional transformation through various technology related integration as part of the school curriculum. Currently, Christopher is serving as an Instructional Specialist Liaison to 30 schools within Children First Network 10 to promote effective implementation of technology in content areas such as ELA, Math, Science, and Social Studies. He aspires one day to create a school infused with what teachers and students love to do the most: to showcase what they are teaching and learning through various avenues and mediums.
B.A. in Broadcasting/Journalism from Texas State University. Monique Lewis began her career in education in San Marcos, TX where she taught Special Education and Regular Education for 3 years. She has been a classroom teacher for nine years, but engaged in educating youth for 12 years. Monique has been with KIPP Houston for the last five years. She was a founding teacher for KIPP Liberation College Preparatory and currently teaches for KIPP Polaris Academy for Boys in the most challenging urban districts in the state of Texas-North Forest. She is the Board Chairman for Crescendo Preparatory School of Music and Arts-a subsidiary of Worship At Large Ministries Incorporated in Houston, Texas. Her life's work is centered around the philosophy that every moment of instruction should be delivered to affect life altering change in the lives of the students. Constructive and judicious change that is so significant, it infiltrates the student’s home and community. So then her classroom becomes a greater opportunity to inspire any generation of learners. She aspires to grow beyond measure as she enters this new challenge at Columbia.
B.A. in Sociology from College of New Rochelle; M.A. in Elementary Education and Literacy Specialist from Adelphi University. Alica Martin began her career in education in Brooklyn, NY and taught 2nd and 4th grade her 1st year. Alica was also member of Alpha Upsilon Alpha Honors Society. Currently, Alica teaches 2nd and 3rd grades at P.S. 9 in Brooklyn, NY and aspires to helping students to develop a deep love and respect for themselves, others, and their environment.
B.S. in Education with a minor in Leadership, Ethics, and Social Action from Indiana University; M.A. in Master of Education Administration from St. Louis University. Emily Masengale began her career in education in St. Louis Public Schools at Roosevelt High School and taught Special Education. Then, Emily was a founding teacher at The Big Picture Academy, a new alternative education program for the district. She has served as a 9th-11th grade Advisor at The Big Picture over the past three years. Emily was named the St. Louis Public Schools Teacher of the Year 2009-2010 and was a Missouri State Teacher of the Year finalist. Emily is an alumni of Teach for America. During the 2010-2011 school year Emily will be working as an Assistant Principal in the Indianapolis Public Schools. Emily aspires to become a principal in an urban public school district.
B.A. in Italian and a B.S. in Strategic Communications from University of Kansas; Ed.M. in Secondary Education from Loyola Marymount University. Meghan McCardle began her career in education teaching American Literature in Los Angeles, CA as a Teach For America corps member. Currently, Meghan teaches English at Animo Pat Brown Charter High School, a California Distinguished School in Los Angeles, CA. She has held many leadership positions including: English Department Chair, Leadership Team Member, Adjunct Professor for Loyola Marymount University in an English Methods course, and Corp Member Advisor for Teach For America Summer Institute. She aspires to become a school leader in South Los Angeles.
B.A. in Political Science from Rosemont College; M.S. in Elementary Education from St. Joseph's University. Tangela McClam began her career in education in Philadelphia, PA as a Literacy Intern. She then taught fifth grade for five years. Tangela also serves as the Director of Education for her synagogue. Currently, Tangela is a Middle Years Math Teacher at Walter G. Smith School in South Philadelphia and aspires to lead a school that takes a holistic approach to addressing the needs of at-risk learners.
B.A. in History and Economics from Stanford University; J.D. from the University of Texas School of Law. After practicing law for five years, Charles Moody repented and began teaching as a Teach for America corps member in Edcouch, TX. There he taught a variety of social studies courses, served as the pre-college advisor, and coached a mock trial team. Currently, Charles teaches A.P. U.S. History and A.P. Macroeconomics at Akins High School in Austin, TX and aspires to start or help lead a school expanding college opportunities for low-income students in Austin.
B.A. English Education from Brooklyn College; M.S. in Reading Education from Long Island University. Gisele Morgan began her career in education in Brooklyn, New York at Borough Academies where she taught for four years. Gisele has also served as a mentor to several NYC Teaching Fellows and an adjunct instructor at Hudson County Community College in New Jersey where she taught Remedial English. Gisele has created curriculum for 9-12 grades and conducted professional workshops on classroom management and literacy instruction. Currently, she teaches English Language Arts at Independence High School in Manhattan, where she serves as Lead English Teacher.
B.A. in Secondary Education and History from Boston College; M.Ed. in Curriculum and Instruction, Moderate Special Needs from Boston College. Matthew Moynihan began his career in education in Melrose, MA teaching history and special education for two years at Mystic Valley Regional Charter School. While at Mystic Valley, Matthew served as a coach of two sports and as student government advisor. He then spent two years as a special education teacher at Belmont High School, in Belmont, MA. In Belmont, Matthew continued work as a track and field coach, and also began service as a union representative for his building. Currently, Matthew is in his fourth year as SPED Teacher at Stamford High School in Stamford, CT and aspires to become a school building administrator of an urban school district in order to initiate change in narrowing the achievement gap, improving teacher development opportunities, and building stronger ties between school and community.
B.A. in Anthropology and Women's Studies from Gettysburg College; M.S. in Childhood Education from Pace University. Christina Natalello began her career in education in New York, NY and taught 5th and 6th grade Language Arts and Social Studies for two years. Christina was also a member of Teach for America. Currently, Christina teaches 6th grade English Language Arts teacher at Entrada Academy in New York, NY and aspires to continue to work on helping students adjust to middle school and transition into adolescence.
B.A. in International Relations with a Minor in Economics from American University. Tracey Naylor worked for Lehman, Lee and Zu and Peking University Women's Legal Aide Center in Beijing, China before beginning her career in education in Phoenix, Arizona through Teach for America as a 6th grade teacher. In addition to teaching, Tracey worked as a corps member advisor for two summers training incoming Teach for American corps members in a five-week pre-service training program. Currently, Tracey teaches 7th grade Biology at KIPP Central City Academy in New Orleans, LA and aspires to become a Principal.
B.A. in History from Princeton University; J.D. from University of Texas School of Law. After law school, Pike Taylor Nichols received his training through the Texas Teaching Fellows Program. He began teaching in the Del Valle Independent School District and taught 5th grade Social Studies for two years. Currently, Taylor teaches 8th grade social studies and shares grade level chair duties at KIPP Austin College Prep in Austin, TX. He aspires to be a leader in promoting best practices for public schools and teachers.
B.A. in Psychology & Criminology from Miami University; M.S.Ed. in Urban Education from Mercy College. Victoria Orsi began her career in education in Bronx, NY as a member of the New York City Teaching Fellows. She taught special education English Language Arts and Integrated Algebra for her first two years. Currently, Victoria teaches Biology, Geometry and AP Psychology at South Bronx Preparatory in Bronx, NY. She also leads a program for teachers targeted towards increasing student achievement using action research projects and formative assessment. In addition, Victoria oversees high school special education and is a leader in the learning community at her school. Victoria aspires to be a school leader in the Bronx and use her experience at the classroom level to further develop her capacity as an effective leader.
B.A. in History from Brown University; M.A. in Education from Stanford University. Zachary Osofsky began his career in education in Providence, RI, teaching 7th and 8th grade students as a member of Providence Summerbridge. He then taught 9th and 10th grade students World History at Hillsdale High School in San Mateo, CA. Currently, Zachary teaches 8th grade Humanities at Urban Assembly Academy of Arts and Letters in Brooklyn, NY.
B.A. in German from College of the Holy Cross; M.S. in TESOL from CUNY Lehman College. Meredith Phelan began her career in education in Freiburg, Germany and taught English as a foreign language at a German secondary school. Meredith was also member of New York City Teaching Fellows. Currently, Meredith teaches ESL at Harry S. Truman High School in Bronx, NY and serves as ESL coordinator. She aspires to become an administrator who works primarily with the English Language Learners of New York City.
B.A. in History, Washington University in St. Louis, MO. Carl Phillips taught 4th grade, middle school, and high school in Chicago, Guadalajara (Mexico), and Minneapolis. He also served as Coordinator of Curriculum and Instruction at Breakthrough Saint Paul, a member of the national Breakthrough Collaborative. From 2007 to 2009, he was Assistant Director of Lighthouse Academy of Nations, a charter high school in Minneapolis. Currently, he is the Dean of Students at Achieve Language Academy, a Pre-K to 8th grade charter school in Saint Paul, MN. He aspires to become a better school leader in order to help kids do better academic work and be better people.
B.A. in History and M.A. in Curriculum and Instruction from Humboldt State University. David Riesenfeld began his career in education teaching World History in rural northern California. He then joined a large comprehensive high school in Long Island City where he taught History and Social Studies for three years. David then joined the founding faculty of a new, small school in Brooklyn where he worked to develop the foundations of its Social Studies program. Currently, David teaches US History, Mock Trial, and Health Education at Robert F. Wagner Secondary School for Art and Technology in Long Island City, NY and aspires to gain deeper insight and experience with public school organization and leadership and participate in new school development.
B.S. in Business Administration from Delaware Valley College; M.S.Ed. in Education from Holy Family University. Rose Rock began her career in education in Philadelphia, PA and taught 7th and 8th grade Algebra and Social Studies for five years. Rose was also member of TFA, CPA's, and SIFE. Currently, Rose teaches 6th grade at BB Comegys School in Philadelphia, PA and aspires to become an administrator in the Philadelphia School District.
B.A. in English from Muhlenberg College; M.S. in Literacy Education from Hunter College. Jessica Saratovsky began her career in education in the Bronx, NY at P.S. 170 and taught kindergarten students for 2 years and first grade students for 2 years. While there, she was the coordinator of the Student Enrichment Model (SEM) program as well as the Literacy lab site. Currently, Jessica teaches first grade at P.S. 33 Chelsea Prep in Manhattan, NY. She is the lead teacher for the first grade as well as a mentor to student teachers from Fordham University. Jessica aspires to be a curriculum coordinator or a literacy coach in order to work with other teachers to create and implement effective teaching in the classroom. She also hopes one day to be a principal of a school where she will have the ability to be out in the classrooms and teach classes alongside the teachers.
B.S. in Mathematics from McGill University; M.S. in the Teaching of Secondary Mathematics from the University of Illinois at Chicago. Daniel Selan began his teaching career at the University of Illinois and Duke University's Talent Identification Program before he joined the faculty at Pritzker College Prep, a Noble Street Charter School in Chicago. He currently serves as the Mathematics Department Chair, teaches Pre-Calculus and Statistics, and he also leads the school's Math Team. Daniel is passionate about ensuring that students of all backgrounds have the opportunity to obtain a quality education.
B.A. in History from Hampton University; M.A. from Saginaw Valley State University. Kwame Simmons began his career in education in Detroit where he taught Social Studies for 3 years. He has dedicated his career to educating students in the urban centers of Detroit, Michigan and Saint Louis, Missouri. He is very enthusiastic, well read and knowledgeable regarding current research in school culture, effective instruction and quality assessment. Currently, Kwame is the Middle School Principal at Imagine Academy of Careers Middle School in St. Louis, MO.
B.A. in History with a minor in Education from Clark University; M.A. in Social Studies from Teachers College of Columbia University. Michael Skrilow has worked for nearly a decade with middle school students in Brooklyn both as an ELA and Social Studies teacher and has worked with both general education students and at risk students, successfully reformulated the social studies curriculum to include a more interdisciplinary approach with the ELA department in order to further develop students' writing and reading ability. Currently, Michael works as the Head of the Humanities department, and teaches 7th graders at the Eagle Academy for Young Men at Ocean Hill, a new 6-12 all boys' public school, which he cofounded, wrote the curriculum, and successfully presented to the New York City Board of Education. Additionally Michael has aided in the development of many new teachers, both from Columbia's Teachers College, and the New York City Teaching Fellows. Based on his work with students and colleagues alike, Michael was awarded the New York State Exceptional Educator Award in May of 2009. In the future he wishes to continue to work with the Eagle family in order to create another Eagle Academy.
B.A. in Elementary Education from University of South Carolina. Courtney began her career in education in Columbia, SC and taught 2nd, 3rd, and 5th grade during her student teaching. Courtney Sowell was also member of Teach for America in Charlotte, NC. Currently, Courtney teaches 4th grade at Briarwood Elementary School in Charlotte, NC and aspires to positively influence teachers and students by being an effective school leader.
B.A. in English Literature from Caldwell College; M.A. in English Literature from Montclair State University. Kevin Stanton began his career in education in Union Township, New Jersey where he taught Language Arts for four years. Currently, Kevin teaches English at Newton High School. He is also the Language Arts, Social Studies, and World Languages Curriculum Coordinator. Kevin aspires to serve as a building principal where he hopes to be an educational leader to both students and faculty.
B.A. in Liberal Arts, Social Sciences Concentration from College of New Rochelle; M.S. in Education, Teaching Urban Adolescents with Disabilities from Long Island University. Sharon Stephens began her education career in the NYC Department of Education at Benjamin Banneker Academy where she served as the Coordinator of Special Education and founding member of the school wide professional development team. At Banneker, she taught English and managed the Resource Room for five years. Sharon also taught Literacy, English, and ESL at the Young Adult Borough Center (YABC) in Brooklyn, NY, an alternative program for students ages 17 to 21, during the past four years. Additionally, at YABC she served as the Regents Testing Coordinator, data inquiry team member and provided professional development training for teachers. Sharon was a member of the New York City Teaching Fellows. Recently, Sharon was asked to join the Children First Network 4 in New York. Serving as an Early Intervention Services Coordinator, she assists and supports 13 schools, elementary through high, achieve academic excellence for their students. She continues to teach English at YABC and aspires to create opportunities for teachers to be trained, supported, and held accountable to be at their best enabling all students to achieve without limitations.
B.A. in English Literature from University of California at Berkeley with a minor in urban education; completed graduate work at the University of Pennsylvania for her teaching certificate. Erin Swan-Potras began her career in education in Oakland, CA working with English, digital and multimedia literacy. Erin moved to Philadelphia to join the Philadelphia Teaching Fellows and remains active within this organization. As a middle school English teacher for 3 years in the School District of Philadelphia, Erin served as the Literacy Curriculum Coordinator helping to design, organize and implement curriculum initiatives within her school while supporting other teachers and serving on the school's Leadership Team. Currently, Erin teaches middle and high school English at Mastery Charter School in Philadelphia, PA and aspires to move into an administrative role within her charter school. Ultimately, Erin would love to focus her interest and passion for urban education reform through opening a charter school system in an urban area.
BA in Bilingual Elementary Education/TESOL, and Spanish, College of Education, University of New Mexico. Julia Tapia joined Albuquerque Public Schools in 2005. Recently she began teaching at the only school in Albuquerque that has no boundaries, and is also a language magnet school. She serves as the leader of the (EEO) Efficient and Effective Operations goal team, and is also the resource teacher and school wide trainer for (CCI) Continious Classroom Improvement. Julia hopes to one day open a Spanish Christian school free of cost to its students and families.
Undergraduate degree from the Woodrow Wilson School of Public and International Affairs along with a certificate in American Studies from Princeton University. As a Teach for America corps member in New Orleans, Kit Tollerson was a founding teacher at Arthur Ashe Charter School, a K-8 transformation school that is a part of the FirstLine Schools network of open admission charter schools. During his first year, Kit taught social studies to grades 4-7, propelling his students to the highest test scores at Ashe, which made the greatest academic gains on statewide tests in New Orleans during the 2008-2009 academic year. In the winter of 2009, Kit became the Middle School Team Leader. He is also a member of TFA's Community Outreach Team for the Greater New Orleans region and a Learning Team Leader, providing instructional support to first-year TFA teachers.
B.A. in Music from Berklee College of Music; M.A. in Teaching from Montclair State University. Alan Usherenko began his career in education in Newark, NJ, and has been teaching 8th grade mathematics for the past 5 years. Alan was also a member of the curriculum committee for Newark Public Schools; consultant in choosing new grading software for the district; tutor for the Rutgers Future Scholars program; coach of the Robotics Team at his school. Currently, Alan teaches 8th grade mathematics at Newark Public Schools in Newark, NJ and aspires to become an administrator at a public school.
B.A. in Religious Studies from Rhodes College. After college, Krysten joined Teach For America and taught first and third grade in New Orleans, Louisiana. Krysten Wendell left New Orleans after two years to found East Chicago Lighthouse Charter School in East Chicago, Indiana. She taught third and fourth grade, and was the lead teacher. Currently, Krysten is the Director of Instruction at East Chicago Lighthouse Charter School, a position she has filled for two years. In her current position, she coaches teachers, coordinates curriculum, guides instruction, and manages testing implementation and data analysis. Krysten aspires to someday lead an urban elementary school that develops well-rounded students by balancing the core curriculum, the arts, and discovery of nature.
B.A. in Sociology and Latin American Studies from Wesleyan University; M.S. in Bilingual Childhood (bilingual extension) from Pace University. Margaret Pilar White began her career in education in Oakland, CA, teaching 8th grade for one summer. She continued to teach Middle School special education in San Francisco for a year before moving to New York, where she became a member of New York City Teaching Fellows. Currently, Margaret is a 4th grade dual language teacher at Henry Longfellow Elementary School PS 94 in Brooklyn, NY. She aspires to become a leader who practices what she preaches, empowering those who are involved in the functioning of a school, all the while doing so with a warm attitude and calm demeanor.
B.A. in Art History, New College of Florida; M.S. in Childhood Education, Brooklyn College. Jessica Willis began her career in education as a New York City Teaching Fellow in Brooklyn. Currently, Jessica Willis is the Assistant Principal of Girls Prep Lower East Side Elementary. This is her fourth year at Girls Prep. Prior to becoming Assistant Principal, Jessica served Girls Prep as the Math Curriculum Specialist and 2nd grade Lead Teacher. Jessica is strongly committed school reform, and believes that it is our duty as educators to ensure that every student is provided with an excellent education.
B.A. in Fine Arts at Brandeis University, Waltham, MA along with a certificate in Education Brenda Yoo began her career in education at Yeshiva of North Jersey and has been working for Tenafly Public Schools for the past 5 years. Currently, Brenda is teaching 4th grade while serving as a Peer Mediation Coordinator. She also serves as a member of the Literacy Committee and Curriculum Revision Committee for the Tenafly School District. Through this experience and receiving her Masters in Education Leadership, Brenda aspires to build a professional learning community where both teachers and students will thrive and flourish.
B.A. in Psychology from Middlebury M.S. Ed in Teaching from Pace University Alexis Zain began her career in education in New York, N.Y. and taught 6th grade math and science for the past 5 years. Alexis is also a Teach for America and Posse alumna. Currrently, Alexis is a 6th grade math teacher at Health and Science Charter School in Bronx, New York and aspires to one day found and operate her own school in New York City.
Teachers College, Columbia University 525 W 120th Street New York, New York 10027-6696 Russell Hall Box 16