John Bruno '09
Bruno received his bachelor's degree in elementary and special education. He teaches eighth-grade special education students in Melrose, Mass., and also volunteers his time coaching football, basketball and track. Bruno is currently enrolled in the graduate program in counseling at Salem State University. He credits his education professors with helping to prepare him for the challenges and joys of teaching.
Alicia Ferri '10
Ferri received her bachelor's degree in elementary and special education. After a rigorous process, she was accepted to the Teach for America program and has been assigned as a resource room teacher in a K-5 school in Phoenix, Ariz. Ferri reported that the interviewers were impressed with her coursework and the wide range of grade levels and settings for her field placements in elementary and special education. They were also impressed with her working knowledge of the IEP process and development of the IEP plan. Ferri will pursue a master's degree in education through her participation with Teach for America.
Melody Peloquin Gershkoff '02
Gershkoff received her bachelor's degree in early childhood education and has had many diverse experiences in teaching since graduating from Salve Regina. She began her career in her hometown of Gloucester, Mass., where she taught kindergarten. After receiving a master's degree in literacy from Lesley University, Gershkoff worked with middle school students in two Massachusetts school districts. For the past two years, she has been teaching first grade in a Department of Defense school in Germany. With three more years left in Germany, Gershkoff looks forward to traveling and connecting with other early childhood graduates also teaching abroad.
Emma Hookway '08
Hookway received her bachelor's degree in music education. After graduation, she began teaching elementary general music, beginning band, chorus and strings in the Newport Public Schools. Hookway helped lead her middle school orchestra to a gold medal performance at the Great East Festivals. She now teaches general music in grades K-8, elementary chorus and middle school band in the Middletown (R.I.) Public Schools. Hookway served as the band manager for the Rhode Island Music Educators Association's 2010 All-State Junior Band.
Jennifer Kennedy '10
Kennedy received her bachelor's degree in elementary and special education and also minored in Spanish. After graduation, she began working with eighth graders in the Yonkers Public Schools. During her first year in Yonkers, Kennedy joined her school's response to intervention committee and has used the knowledge she gained at Salve Regina to help create a response to intervention process. She is currently taking graduate courses in the reading specialist program at Columbia Teachers College.
Paige Pennypacker '05
Pennypacker received her bachelor's degree in elementary education and works for General Physics onsite at Newport's Naval Undersea Warfare Center. She recently joined a group of engineers and technicians who had formed Aquidneck Island Robotics, a nonprofit organization teaching and promoting science, technology, engineering and mathematics to youth in the local community. Pennypacker coached one of the group's FIRST LEGO League teams and actively recruits Salve Regina students to volunteer for the program. She also heads a science club and supports the Newport Public Schools' SeaPerch underwater robotics club. Pennypacker loves that she was able to integrate her passion for education with her current employment.
Brittany Sherwood '11
Salve Regina's 2011 valedictorian, Sherwood earned degrees in secondary education, mathematics and Spanish. Despite her demanding schedule, she found time to volunteer with a community garden, the Salvation Army and Special Olympics. Sherwood was a member of Sigma Phi Sigma, the national mercy honor society, and served as both secretary and president. Following graduation, she was hired to teach seventh and eighth grade mathematics at Mount Everett Regional School in Sheffield, Mass. Sherwood plans to begin graduate coursework after completing her first year of teaching.
Nicole Strandson '11
Strandson earned degrees in secondary education and Spanish. She had the opportunity to study abroad in Seville, Spain, and student-taught with a cooperating teacher who had been recognized as Rhode Island's teacher of the year. Prior to graduation, Strandson learned that she had been chosen for a middle school Spanish teaching position in the Sharon, Mass., school district. She credits her Salve Regina education for the ease with which she was able to secure a teaching position in a highly regarded, high performing school system.
Amanda Studt '11
While at Salve Regina, Studt devoted a great deal of her time and energy to dance, a talent that unexpectedly became more than an avocation. She found her calling as a student teacher in a classroom designed to meet the needs of children with emotional and behavioral disorders. Studt's ability to impact hard-to-reach children through the stress-reducing powers of dance and movement impressed her supervisor, cooperating teacher and the children themselves. She intends to pursue a graduate degree working with children with special needs.
Vincent Testa '11
A dynamic force during his time at Salve Regina, Testa majored in secondary education and mathematics. He was a charismatic student leader who was involved in everything from tutoring students in Africa to serving as class president and SRU Dance officer to mentoring at-risk youth in the community. Testa also completed prestigious summer teaching internships and organized special events on campus. Following graduation, he was hired to teach mathematics at Roosevelt High School in Washington, D.C.