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Education Success Stories
Saint Francis University announces first Social Skills Group
Mar 14 2012
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We are so proud of our alumni, students, faculty and staff! Here are a few of the success stories that we just had to share.
Education majors Katie Dacanay and Beth Wheeler were awarded Intrepid Research Grants, which encourages bold study, sponsored by the School or Arts and Letters.
Katie is a double major in History and Mathematics/Secondary Education, and a member of the Women’s Lacrosse team. Ms. Dacanay conducted research in the British Library and Public Record Office in London. She is preparing a paper on the Victorian reform of women’s legal status as property owners and inheritors and the Married Women’s Property Bills.
"My experience in education at Saint Francis University helped me to become the teacher I am today. For me, the most beneficial part of my experience was the opportunity to observe and teach in the classroom beginning my sophomore year. As a sophomore I was terrified of teaching a lesson to high school students who were only a few years younger than me, however this opportunity taught me to try new things and face my fears as an educator. This experience helped me gain a sense of what educational strengths I had as well as my weaknesses. It allowed me to spend the next two years focusing on my weaknesses, turning them into strengths."
"During my college search, there came a moment when I just knew that Saint Francis University was where I was supposed to be, where I wanted and needed to be. Not for a second of the past four years have I regretted that decision. Here at Saint Francis, I have literally had the opportunity to reach higher and go far—farther than my wildest dreams. Through the study abroad programs here on campus, I have had the opportunity to spend two months in Italy and four in France. My time abroad has opened doors to new languages and cultures, new opportunities at home and abroad, and friendships that stretch beyond boundary lines. At Saint Francis, I have been able to simultaneously pursue my three passions—art, English, and education. I’ve had opportunities to exhibit my art and to intern in the education department at the Carnegie Museum of Art in Pittsburgh—opportunities that I will continue to pursue after graduation. Through on-campus programs, I’ve worked with children of all ages and ability levels. I’ve been able to grow and explore under the tutelage of caring, knowledgeable professors whose enthusiasm has both fueled my love of learning and awakened passions I didn’t know I had.
To me, the beauty of Saint Francis University is that this place isn’t just about academics, or activities, or even achievements. It’s about people. It’s about a body of students who care for each other, the staff who support us, and the professors who inspire us. It’s about an active faith and a commitment to service as relevant today as it was hundreds of years ago. It’s about a community built on a shared purpose, a family who comes together to learn from each other, to grow with each other, then to reach out to change the world. I am truly blessed to be a part of that community, to carry on the spirit of Saint Francis wherever life may take me."
Dr. Glenna Zeak, Early Childhood professor, and Mr. William Padamonsky, Field Experience Coordinator, serve on advisory committees for the Pennsylvania Department of Education. Both were members of a committee that developed new guidelines for students’ field experiences. Mr. Padamonsky developed test items for the new Pennsylvania Teacher Certification Test.
Collaboration can be a great means to facilitate learning. Third grade students benefitted from a lesson designed and developed by early childhood education students from St. Francis University. During the fall 2011 semester, Dr. Stephanie Ivory collaborated with Mrs. Darla Kochinsky, third grade teacher at Cambria Heights Elementary School, to develop a partnership between the institutions for mutual benefit. The collaborative experience benefited both the pre-service teachers and the elementary students. Lesson delivery allowed for practical experiences within the classroom. University students gained a deeper understanding of lesson design, facilitation, and implementation. Interaction with the third-grade students will continue throughout each semester with visits to the classroom and communication through a “Journal Buddy” project.
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