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As a student in the Arts in Education program, I took classes in arts learning and integration, gained experience in arts-focused grant writing, and observed arts policy and researchers on a daily basis. For my final project, I created a collaborative arts grant which included qualitative research. In a separate project, I interviewed The Juilliard School president, Dr. Joseph Polisi, about his work "The Artist As Citizen", and wrote a proposed curriculum that harnesses the civic qualities of the arts. In addition to arts learning, I studied educational practice, policy, advocacy, research, civic engagement, school reform, and family and community partnerships. I learned from professors such as Steve Seidel, Howard Gardner, Karen Mapp, Eleanor Duckworth, and Kay Merseth.
I received my Bachelor of Music at the Steinhardt School of Education at NYU, where I studied clarinet performance, completed the Music Education program, graduated magna cum laude, and received the Founder’s Day Award.
As the designer and coordinator of our school's Enrichment Program, I take responsibility for all aspects of its implementation. Our clubs provide diverse and quality programming before and after-school and serve close to 50% of our school's 1,000+ K-9th population. I ensure there is a wide array of options for all ages, and all budgets. I recruit vendors, oversee their background and insurance requirements, coordinate schedules, and evaluate programming. In addition, I work closely with school administration and our business manager to ensure smooth communication and financial transparency.
I am also the middle school music teacher. I currently teach band and choir, but have previously taught guitar and K-7 general music at the school. Students under my direction have advanced to District Honor Band, Tri-State Honor Band at Young Harris College, have performed at the Martin Luther King Jr. Unity Breakfast, and regularly compete at Large Group Performance Evaluations. As the head of the music department, I design my own curriculum and enjoy aligning my lessons to fit with other subjects, such as visual art, science, and social studies. I was selected as the 2011-2012 New American Hero for my school, which is similar to Teacher of the Year, and was a semi-finalist for the national New American Hero competition.
Through this work study job I help implement El Sistema music education at this unique Boston charter school. My jobs included aiding Resident Artists as well as teaching group clarinet lessons. I also conducted qualitative research at this school which looked at mission alignment amidst newly introduced programs and school curricula.
I worked with this non-profit that promotes “microdemocracy” and builds individual democratic capacity by using the power of questions in every day encounters. Additionally, The Right Question Institute's strategy is a powerful tool for educational transformation. I helped research educational marketing and professional development models for their recent publication, “Make Just One Change”, which is about using their strategy in the classroom.
I taught grades K-5 for two years at this New York City public school. During my time at P.S. 8, I implemented a diverse and interdisciplinary curriculum, which included band, choral, and recorder instruction, Carnegie Hall’s Musical Explorers, as well as a keyboard program for grades K-2 called Music and the Brain. I collaborated with general education teachers regularly to design connective units of study incorporating learning goals from all disciplines. I also served on the School Leadership Team, where I met with parents, school leaders, and other teachers to help set goals and assess progress of the school.
I worked with the Special Support Services Instructor to provide support to middle school students with Individualized Educational Programs. I acted as an advisor and implemented activities including arts instruction, music therapy, movement, journaling, and tutoring to these students during the school year. I led advising sessions which helped to clarify student’s daily, weekly, and yearly goals and get them centered and ready for school.
I gained communications experience during my two summers working full-time at The Pickens Country Progress in Jasper, GA. My duties included working with advertisers, interviewing, photographing, reporting and performing administrative duties.
I gained experience in editorial, news, and feature writing during my summers working for this weekly newspaper. I attended board meetings, conducted interviews, wrote copy, answered phones, and took ad and subscription orders.
Co-Authors, Valerie Stancil and Kassie Eberle created this movie for our school reform class taught by Dr. Kay Merseth at the Harvard Graduate School of Education.
Project Based Learning, Transformational Leadership, El Sistema, Civic Identity and Engagement, Democratic Education, Maxine Greene and the Imagination, The Artist as Citizen, Cultural Preservation, Family and Community Partnerhips