Educators of Impact | Mary Lonhart

With the COVID-19 crisis making it abundantly clear the critical role that educators play in our society, Lurie College is recognizing SJSU Educators of Impact who have made a transformative difference in the lives of children, families, and communities.  Learn more about SJSU Alumni Mary Lonhart below.  To nominate an SJSU graduate who is an Educator of Impact, please complete this brief Google form.

SJSU Lurie College of Education Educator of Impact Mary Lonhart

“In her role as principal of Scotts Valley Middle School, Mary Lonhart is an educator with an unwavering dedication to every single person on her campus. The community of learning she leads is characterized by a deep commitment to academic achievement that goes hand in hand with a fierce dedication to the social and emotional well-being of every child. “Above and beyond” is the space in which she routinely operates. Her dedication toward goals that align very well with the LCOEs mission and vision coupled with her obvious skill and talent make her an extraordinary educator. We need a thousand Marys.”

Educators of Impact | Clarissa Mae Calimbas

With the COVID-19 crisis making it abundantly clear the critical role that educators play in our society, Lurie College is recognizing SJSU Educators of Impact who have made a transformative difference in the lives of children, families, and communities.  Learn more about SJSU Alumni Clarissa Mae Calimbas below.  To nominate an SJSU graduate who is an Educator of Impact, please complete this brief Google form.

SJSU Lurie College of Education Educator of Impact Clarissa Mae Calimbas

“Clarissa Mae is helping her students during this time through her work as the Assistant Director for Student Involvement at University of the Pacific. She has been going out of her way to ensure that the students she works with are staying connected with each other and the office through weekly check ins and being more accessible to her students. Clarissa Mae’s passions center around student development, engagement, and learning taking place outside of the classroom. Clarissa Mae is an educator of impact through her leadership and empathy for students.”

Educators of Impact | Guadalupe Cruz

With the COVID-19 crisis making it abundantly clear the critical role that educators play in our society, Lurie College is recognizing SJSU Educators of Impact who have made a transformative difference in the lives of children, families, and communities.  Learn more about SJSU Alumni Guadalupe Cruz below.  To nominate an SJSU graduate who is an Educator of Impact, please complete this brief Google form.

SJSU Lurie College of Education Educator of Impact Guadalupe Cruz

“As a 5th grade teacher Mrs. Cruz has demonstrated an ability to work with students and support them to be reflective in their educational journey to actualize high levels of academic achievement. I have thoroughly enjoyed working with Mrs. Cruz and see her as a valuable asset to our team. She consistently shows up as supportive and dedicated to meeting the needs of students.

As a leader, she places high value in building community and relationships. Working alongside her I have observed her working to truly develop relationships with students and work within their realities. She takes time to thoughtfully create space for relationship building, hear personal stories and support students in their growth. Mrs. Cruz’s work in this area demonstrates her understanding of the importance of context and history, while inspiring students within an innovative instructional program that highlights and balances language, literature, writing and the arts. Understanding the context and history of people and school systems is essential to improving them. Understanding the context and history of a student is essential to supporting them. At San Antonio, Mrs. Cruz is also a member of core educators serving on our Instructional Leadership team selected to inform and shape the collective vision and action of our school’s instructional community, which she has been part of for over twenty years. In this space, she serves as a grade-level representative and thought partner in shaping the school’s plan to better serve students throughout the year.

Throughout my career and in my current role at Alum Rock Union School District, I’ve had the pleasure of interacting with countless dynamic educators and leaders. With this reflection, I believe that Mrs. Cruz’s aptitude is exceptional. She is also a true pleasure to work with; she is collaborative, energetic, and committed and very much deserving of this recognition. It is for the above mentioned reasons that I nominate her for recognition as an Educator of Impact.”

 

Educators of Impact | Mike Espinoza

With the COVID-19 crisis making it abundantly clear the critical role that educators play in our society, Lurie College is recognizing SJSU Educators of Impact who have made a transformative difference in the lives of children, families, and communities.  Learn more about SJSU Alumni Mike Espinoza below.  To nominate an SJSU graduate who is an Educator of Impact, please complete this brief Google form.

SJSU Lurie College of Education Educator of Impact Mike Espinoza

“Mike is so deeply connected to his students and supporting them to bring their full identities into the classroom and school and to use those identities to help them flourish as students. His caring and commitment are a model for transformative teaching!”

Educators of Impact | Veronica Weaver

With the COVID-19 crisis making it abundantly clear the critical role that educators play in our society, Lurie College is recognizing SJSU Educators of Impact who have made a transformative difference in the lives of children, families, and communities.  Learn more about SJSU Alumni Veronica Weaver below.  To nominate an SJSU graduate who is an Educator of Impact, please complete this brief Google form.

SJSU Lurie College of Education Educator of Impact Veronica Weaver

“Veronica is an early childhood special education teacher in Santa Clara County and has been actively working with families of students with disabilities to fight for inclusive educational preschool supports for students with disabilities. After the transition to Shelter-in-Place, Veronica’s role dramatically shifted as she had to provide online supports to students and their families amid COVID-19. Veronica rallied folks to provide digital stories/read alouds for her students! She is passionate about supporting inclusive education for all and has incorporated this into her Ed.D. program for her dissertation research using frameworks such as DisCrit and community cultural wealth!”

Educators of Impact | Margaret Isied

With the COVID-19 crisis making it abundantly clear the critical role that educators play in our society, Lurie College is recognizing SJSU Educators of Impact who have made a transformative difference in the lives of children, families, and communities.  Learn more about SJSU Alumni Margaret Isied below.  To nominate an SJSU graduate who is an Educator of Impact, please complete this brief Google form.

SJSU Lurie College of Education Educator of Impact Margaret Isied

“Margaret Isied is an Educator of Impact because of her outstanding professional expertise and leadership.  She currently works as the Lead Academic Counselor at Abraham Lincoln High School in San Jose, where she manages a team of five counseling professionals.  Always focused on student success, she has increased four-year college application acceptances for low-income and students of color and expertly collaborated with community organizations, teachers, administrators, and families.  A graduate of our Counselor Education program, Margaret has intentionally continued her professional development with designations as a College Admission Specialist and Counseling Data Specialist for ASCA.  She also leads the PublicSchool Counselor Committee for the Western Association for College AdmissionCounseling and has facilitated the dramatic increase in the organization’s public school counselor membership by 400% over two years.  Concurrently, she created professional development resources and has made compelling presentations at conferences.  In February 2020, Margaret was the kickoff speaker at the WACAC Legislative Conference in Sacramento where she brought the public school counselor perspective to life.  Margaret remains integrally connected to our program and recruited the majority of her Lincoln High counseling staff to attend the Sunday  CTC accreditation meeting.  Margaret is knowledgeable, collaborative, and leads with passion and impact.”

Educators of Impact | Debbie Pavlos

With the COVID-19 crisis making it abundantly clear the critical role that educators play in our society, Lurie College is recognizing SJSU Educators of Impact who have made a transformative difference in the lives of children, families, and communities.  Learn more about SJSU Alumni Debbie Pavlos below.  To nominate an SJSU graduate who is an Educator of Impact, please complete this brief Google form.

SJSU Lurie College of Education Educator of Impact Debbie Pavlos

“Miss Pavlos has made the social emotional well being of her students her number one focus. She has also sent along many resources to parents that focus on the emotional well being of their children versus just their academic needs. Her twice weekly Zoom calls include introductions of stuffed animals, a space for students to share feelings, and ask questions (no matter what the topic is). She has created digital interactive read alouds that include fun backgrounds (ie-a frozen tundra for Tacky the Penguin) and think alouds that have her students responding to her and engaging in higher order thinking. She understands that her students need to see her face, hear her jokes, and see their beloved class mascot Q-Bear. Her Google Classroom site is organized and she provides daily feedback to students via assignments and the classroom stream. She also encourages students to chat and respond to each other to engage in socializing which is so important to first graders during this challenging time. Miss Pavlos provides a sense of calm, normalcy, and comfort to her students in a time when they need it the most!”

Educators of Impact | Ashley Lamboley

With the COVID-19 crisis making it abundantly clear the critical role that educators play in our society, Lurie College is recognizing SJSU Educators of Impact who have made a transformative difference in the lives of children, families, and communities.  Learn more about SJSU Alumni Ashley Lamboley below.  To nominate an SJSU graduate who is an Educator of Impact, please complete this brief Google form.

SJSU Lurie College of Education Educator of Impact Ashley Lamboley

“Ashley is a recent graduate and all she talks about is how much she loves and misses the Lurie College of Education.  She still attends as many workshops, conferences, and events as possible.  Since graduating she has been working at the child development center and babysitting.  She is great with children and has a great attitude and positive outlook on life.”

Educators of Impact | Raquel Katz

With the COVID-19 crisis making it abundantly clear the critical role that educators play in our society, Lurie College is recognizing SJSU Educators of Impact who have made a transformative difference in the lives of children, families, and communities.  Learn more about SJSU Alumni Raquel Katz below.  To nominate an SJSU graduate who is an Educator of Impact, please complete this brief Google form.

SJSU Lurie College of Education Educator of Impact Raquel Katz

“Maya Angelou once said ‘People may not remember exactly what you did, or what you said, but they will always remember how you made them feel.’  Raquel Katz, principal of Ryan STEAM Academy, builds strong relationships with her community–that is at the heart of her work.  She believes in inclusivity and leads with her whole heart.  She is the only principal in our district to house our Therapeutic Special Day program K-5 Class, and, as one of her goals, she promotes mainstreaming for all students.  She takes time to reach every single student especially those in her ED program who have faced significant trauma in their lives.  She is a strong advocate for her students and believes that every child deserves a high-quality education in a loving and caring environment.”

Educators of Impact | Jacqueline Janeiro

With the COVID-19 crisis making it abundantly clear the critical role that educators play in our society, Lurie College is recognizing SJSU Educators of Impact who have made a transformative difference in the lives of children, families, and communities.  Learn more about SJSU Alumni Jacqueline Janeiro below.  To nominate an SJSU graduate who is an Educator of Impact, please complete this brief Google form.

SJSU Lurie College of Education Educator of Impact Jacqueline Janeiro

“During this quarantine Jacqueline has been in communication with many of her high school students, reaching out through Instagram, emails and Google Hangout.  Jacqueline is managing 5 undergraduate students assists them with helping students, Jacqueline is dedicated to her work and has been a great resource for her students.”

Educators of Impact | Elexus James

With the COVID-19 crisis making it abundantly clear the critical role that educators play in our society, Lurie College is recognizing SJSU Educators of Impact who have made a transformative difference in the lives of children, families, and communities.  Learn more about SJSU Alumni Elexus James below.  To nominate an SJSU graduate who is an Educator of Impact, please complete this brief Google form.

SJSU Lurie College of Education Educator of Impact Elexus James

“Elexus gave back to the community during her time at SJSU, and continues to do so now.  She works well with the youth in the community.  Her heart is giving and full of compassion.  She helps others to learn and grow, to truly reach their full potential.”

Educators of Impact | Ann-Marie Sierra

With the COVID-19 crisis making it abundantly clear the critical role that educators play in our society, Lurie College is recognizing SJSU Educators of Impact who have made a transformative difference in the lives of children, families, and communities.  Learn more about SJSU Alumni and Ann-Marie Sierra below.  To nominate an SJSU graduate who is an Educator of Impact, please complete this brief Google form.

SJSU Lurie College of Education Educator of Impact Ann-Marie Sierra

“Ann-Marie is a Kindergarten teacher who has risen above the challenges, doing what is best for kids emotionally and academically and highly deserving this award. Her teacher candidate stated, “She is the definition of an inspirational teacher. Ms. Sierra doesn’t strive to be perfect, but strives to do what is best for her kids.” Showing kids all the kindness in the world, comes second nature to her. She exemplifies what many teachers are striving for during this difficult time.

She greets students individually as they enter their daily morning meeting. She shares the calendar, picks a name-stick for the weather report, and more. Her “praise time” is now through Class Dojo messages, morning meetings, and on Seesaw. Other positive examples are online reading groups using Raz-Kid books to help with differentiation, class “Show and Tell”, using Jamboard for magnetic word lists, “office hours” for 1:1 time with families, making video lessons for her kids, online math lessons, Seesaw writing activities, and even a virtual field trip to the farm. Ann-Marie has eagerly stepped up to help provide the most efficient and successful lessons for her kids. Again, I hope that you consider her highly for this award.”

Educators of Impact | Justine Huynh Vuong

With the COVID-19 crisis making it abundantly clear the critical role that educators play in our society, Lurie College is recognizing SJSU Educators of Impact who have made a transformative difference in the lives of children, families, and communities.  Learn more about SJSU Alumni and current Lurie College student Justine Huynh Vuong below.  To nominate an SJSU graduate who is an Educator of Impact, please complete this brief Google form.

SJSU Lurie College of Education Teacher Eduation Department student Justine Vuong

“With such a rapid shift to distance learning comes equity issues regarding access to online education. Justine has gone above and beyond to ensure that each and every student in her classroom has been provided with the accessibility needed to fully engage in the learning. As a result, 100% of her students have been able to connect in the new online environment.”

Educators of Impact | Richard Fuentes

With the COVID-19 crisis making it abundantly clear the critical role that educators play in our society, Lurie College is recognizing SJSU Educators of Impact who have made a transformative difference in the lives of children, families, and communities.  Learn more about SJSU Alumni Richard Fuentes below.  To nominate an SJSU graduate who is an Educator of Impact, please complete this brief Google form.

SJSU Lurie College of Education Educator of Impact Richard Fuentes

“Richard and Right At School, the company he works for, is providing an online bank of resources for families inside and outside of his program. These resources are geared toward providing activities that are engaging and meaningful. Moreover, the goal of these resources are to provide a sense of normalcy and continuity during unprecedented times.”

Educators of Impact | Ashley Messner

With the COVID-19 crisis making it abundantly clear the critical role that educators play in our society, Lurie College is recognizing SJSU Educators of Impact who have made a transformative difference in the lives of children, families, and communities.  Learn more about SJSU Alumni Ashley Messner below.  To nominate an SJSU graduate who is an Educator of Impact, please complete this brief Google form.

SJSU Lurie College of Education Educator of Impact Ashley Messner

“Miss Ashley is a Junior Kindergarten teacher at Moreland Preschool. Miss Ashley has worked hard to engage the students in the program through the use of FlipGrid. She creates interactive read aloud videos that focus on topics such as social emotional learning, number sense, and reading foundation skills. Not only does Miss Ashley engage her students prior to reading, but she often includes visuals such as anchor charts and props to help her students understand and connect with the text. Beyond the videos, there are extension activities to keep our little learners busy and also help them find joy amidst the SIP orders. Miss Ashley is an educator at impact, because she knows how much her students miss connecting with their teachers and friends, she is committed to helping students feel the community that she and the other teachers at Moreland Preschool have worked hard to create!”

Educators of Impact | Katie Morse

With the COVID-19 crisis making it abundantly clear the critical role that educators play in our society, Lurie College is recognizing SJSU Educators of Impact who have made a transformative difference in the lives of children, families, and communities.  Learn more about SJSU Alumni Katie Morse below.  To nominate an SJSU graduate who is an Educator of Impact, please complete this brief Google form.

SJSU Lurie College of Education Educator of Impact Katie Morse

“Katie is an amazing 4th grade mentor teacher this year for one of my 143B students. Katie meets with her class every day to ensure that they are supported in their distance learning. Katie has welcomed my teaching candidate in from the very beginning, demonstrating a vast knowledge about the classroom and most specifically reading instruction. Katie has advocated for my candidate to be involved in Google Classroom, appealing to her district to ensure the candidate had access. She pushes my candidate to have confidence in her own ability and instruction in such a supportive way. This candidate is still teaching on a daily basis, amidst the chaos of Covid-19. Adrienne has bloomed in this classroom, and has grown in every area we evaluate as supervisors. This simply would not have been possible without the guidance of a MASTER mentor teacher.”

Educators of Impact | Tiffany Lo

With the COVID-19 crisis making it abundantly clear the critical role that educators play in our society, Lurie College is recognizing SJSU Educators of Impact who have made a transformative difference in the lives of children, families, and communities.  Learn more about SJSU Alumni Tiffany Lo below.  To nominate an SJSU graduate who is an Educator of Impact, please complete this brief Google form.

SJSU Lurie College of Education Educator of Impact Tiffany Lo

“Tiffany is a Junior Preschool (Toddler) Lead Teacher at Gateway Child Development Center — an offsite program of the YMCA of SF. She is one out of the handful YMCA of SF staff who has been providing emergency child care services to those in need during this pandemic. I believe she is not only an amazing teacher but I consider her a front liner as well. She is waking up every morning ready to welcome the children of essential workers and take care of them while their parents take care of us and the community. She ensures that the children and staff that is at our Y Pop – Up Care is well taken care of and is in a safe, clean and healthy environment. She is truly making a big impact to our community as a front line educator!”

Educators of Impact | Candice Nance

With the COVID-19 crisis making it abundantly clear the critical role that educators play in our society, Lurie College is recognizing SJSU Educators of Impact who have made a transformative difference in the lives of children, families, and communities.  Learn more about SJSU Alumni and current Lurie College EdD Leadership Program student Candice Nance below.  To nominate an SJSU graduate who is an Educator of Impact, please complete this brief Google form.

SJSU Lurie College of Education Educator of Impact Candice Nance

“Of anyone I’ve ever met, Candice embodies the idea of being a lifelong learner.  She constantly works to improve her own knowledge and skills so she can improve opportunities for her students.”

Educators of Impact | Barbara Conant

With the COVID-19 crisis making it abundantly clear the critical role that educators play in our society, Lurie College is recognizing SJSU Educators of Impact who have made a transformative difference in the lives of children, families, and communities.  Learn more about SJSU Alumni Barbara Conant below.  To nominate an SJSU graduate who is an Educator of Impact, please complete this brief Google form.

SJSU Lurie College of Education Educator of Impact Barbara Conant

“Barbara Conant was an amazing 5th grade classroom teacher; I had the opportunity as a friend, colleague and administrator to know this from my personal observation of Barbara’s classroom.  With her excellent teaching strategies, she delivered the curriculum to her students through real life experiences.  They witnessed historical events by recreating them in plays, debates, banquets, and more.  Students enjoyed literature by becoming actors, wearing appropriate costumes of that period. Her classroom became a laboratory.  And how do I know that Barbara was an extremely effective teacher?  Because she is still in contact with many of her former students; she attends their weddings, they invite her to lunch or dinner to let her know about their jobs and achievements.  I know for a fact when Barbara, in retirement, became Mayor of Campbell, her former students walked precincts for her.  To sum things up, Barbara accomplished extraordinary things as a teacher, and she has been blessed that her students keep in touch with her to let her know what a difference she has made in their lives.”

Educators of Impact | Mario Rocha

With the COVID-19 crisis making it abundantly clear the critical role that educators play in our society, Lurie College is recognizing SJSU Educators of Impact who have made a transformative difference in the lives of children, families, and communities.  Learn more about Mario Rocha below.  To nominate an SJSU graduate who is an Educator of Impact, please complete this brief Google form.

SJSU Lurie College of Education Educator of Impact Mario Rocha

“Mr. Mario Rocha joined the O.B. Whaley Elementary School staff during the 2019-20 school year as a Resource Specialist Teacher.  Immediately, he was a perfect fit for our student population, a diverse Title 1 school.  He created an inviting learning environment where students easily made connections with him and felt his genuine love for them.  Within weeks of him as the school’s new resource teacher, student absenteeism improved, students made academic gains, and students enjoyed school!  Mr. Rocha is one of a kind, and we are so fortunate to have him as an educator.”

Educators of Impact | Donna Lewis

With the COVID-19 crisis making it abundantly clear the critical role that educators play in our society, Lurie College is recognizing SJSU Educators of Impact who have made a transformative difference in the lives of children, families, and communities.  Learn more about Goleta Union School District Superintendent Donna Lewis below.  To nominate an SJSU graduate who is an Educator of Impact, please complete this brief Google form.

SJSU Lurie College of Education Educator of Impact Dr. Donna Lewis

1. As an educator, what gives you the greatest sense of achievement?

As an educator of nearly 30 years and in my current role as Superintendent, my greatest sense of achievement comes from knowing we are working cohesively as a professional learning community to meet the needs of a diverse student population.  This takes creativity, collaboration, tenacity and a lot of hard work.  We hold high expectations for every student and make no excuses. As a result, our students are outperforming peers from similar school districts.  This is so highly rewarding.

2. What impact has your career had on you?

Public education is ever-evolving and fraught with challenges such as lack of funding, resources, and now distance learning as we cope with the COVID-19 pandemic.  Despite these challenges, or maybe because of them, I have learned to be patient, to be more empathetic, and to never give up — not on any student, family, colleague, or myself. I am definitely a better person for having served as an educator.

3. What advice would you give to a current or aspiring educator?

Being an educator is a calling. I gave up a career in finance to become a teacher because I wanted to make a difference in the lives of students. My advice to any current or aspiring educator would be to push yourself out of your comfort zone.  When opportunity knocks be willing to be flexible and try something new.  Take leadership opportunities.  Get your master’s degree as soon as possible and consider a doctoral degree.  Challenge yourself and always be self-reflective.  Most of all, never forget you are a role model for others.  Respect and treasure the power that you have as an educator to influence the lives of so many.

Educators of Impact | Derica Malaca

With the COVID-19 crisis making it abundantly clear the critical role that educators play in our society, Lurie College is recognizing SJSU Educators of Impact who have made a transformative difference in the lives of children, families, and communities.  Learn more about Derica Malaca below.  To nominate an SJSU graduate who is an Educator of Impact, please complete this brief Google form.

SJSU Lurie College of Education Educator of Impact Derica Malaca

“Derica is helping families and individuals stay certain during this uncertain time through her work as an administrator for the YMCA of SF and as a Financial Educator for World System Builder.  Her work at the YMCA of SF has really helped the organization as they set up Pop – Up Child Care Services for our essential workers in the community.  She is going out of her way to ensure that families in her community are staying connected and informed with the different newsletters that she sends out weekly!  She offers a hand when needed as a front-line teacher as the Y welcomes more kids at their centers while their parents are out helping the community.  As a financial educator, she works night and day to ensure that everyone’s financial future is taken care of.  She has been holding daily Zoom conferences educating families and individuals about their personal finances and doing what she can to share her knowledge and give clarity to those who have lost their jobs, wealth and security.  Derica is an educator of impact by helping all walks of life, one day at a time.”

Educators of Impact | Connie L. Lurie

With the COVID-19 crisis making it abundantly clear the critical role that educators play in our society, Lurie College is recognizing SJSU Educators of Impact who have made a transformative difference in the lives of children, families, and communities.  Learn more about Connie L. Lurie below.  To nominate an SJSU graduate who is an Educator of Impact, please complete this brief Google form.

SJSU Lurie College of Education Educator of Impact Connie L. Lurie

Connie L. Lurie’s commitment to education has had a tremendous impact on both San José State University and the Bay Area as a whole. Her dedication to the university and her philanthropic spirit exemplify the ideals of the College of Education and San José State University.

Connie graduated from San José State with a bachelor’s degree in elementary education and psychology in 1964. She taught in elementary schools on the Monterey Peninsula for six years and later ventured into real estate investment. In her heart, Connie has always been an educator. She established the Guardian Scholars program, which provides support and mentorship to former foster youths at SJSU and endowed the university’s Lurie Author-in-Residence program, which attracts renowned national and international authors to serve as distinguished visiting scholars for one or two semesters. She launched Spartans in the Desert Golf Tournament and Dinner, which brought SJSU faculty and alumni together for a weekend of events in Palm Desert for thirteen years. In May 2013, Connie served as SJSU’s commencement speaker and was awarded an honorary Doctorate of Humane Letters from the California State University System. On May 4, 2007, the SJSU Connie L. Lurie College of Education was named in her honor.

Beyond SJSU, Connie is involved in many worthwhile education-focused causes throughout the Bay Area and California. She has served on numerous boards, including the San Francisco Zoological Society, Damon Runyon Cancer Research Foundation, Strive for College and California State Parks Foundation. She has been active with The Living Desert, Kipp Schools, Aim High, and United Religions International. She’s championed summer science camps for kids through the Boys and Girls Club of Coachella Valley and was awarded their Champion of Youth Award in 2019. Connie is particularly proud of the role that she has played in connecting non profits so that they can work together to benefit children and youth.

With her dedication to education, leadership in promoting access to higher education, charitable giving, and longstanding support of the university, Connie L. Lurie is an outstanding “Educator of Impact.”