2000s Class Notes for Fall 2016 Learning Connections



Michael Hertting

BSE 1981 – Elementary Education
MS 1986 – Educational Administration
Ph.D. 2000 – Educational Administration

Mike recently retired as chief of school operations for the Madison Metropolitan School District, previously serving the assistant superintendent for elementary schools and as a principal at two schools. Mike previously worked in the DC Everest, Anoka-Hennepin and Wausau school districts. Mike is looking forward to the next journey in life.

Cristina Gomez
Ph.D. 2000 – Educational Administration
Cristina is an assistant professor at Ithaca College.

Ben Jaeger
BM 2000 – Music Education
Ben is an instrumental music educator at James Madison Memorial High School. Ben is responsible for four bands, an advanced guitar class and a beginning guitar class. Ben has been a grant recipient in 2009, 2012, 2014 and 2015. He was also awarded Madison Area Music Awards Teacher of the Year 2014, Rock Album of the Year 2016 (Sunspot), Hard Rock Song of the Year 2016 (Sunspot). Ben is a father of two and a husband to Allison.

Alan Rieck
Ph.D. 2000 – Curriculum & Instruction
Alan has been named Assistant Vice President and Assistant Dean of Undergraduate Education at Penn State.

Marc Kornblatt
BSE 2001 – Elementary Education
Marc is now a full-time filmmaker. Most recently, Marc screened his full-length documentary, “What I did in Fifth Grade,” at film festivals in Kentucky and Nova Scotia, The film chronicles his final year as a teacher. Marc’s current project is a web series about Israel, “Rock Regga” (http://refugefilms.net/rock-regga/), and shares stories not typically seen in the mainstream American media.

Eric Michael Carlson
BSE 2002 – History/Secondary Education
Eric has recently begun a third year working abroad at Beijing National Day School, where he teaches IB theory of knowledge and AP human geography in addition to serving as Dean of Students. He reports that China is a fascinating place to teach and live and our students are incredible. Eric highly recommends it. In addition to Eric’s teaching, over the past three years he has also collaborated with the education branch of National Geographic by helping them to develop new initiatives, such as the National Geographic Educator Certification. National Geographic offers some really outstanding opportunities for educators and Eric recommends exploring them.

Laura Migas
BS 2002 – Dance
This year Laura started a new job as a part time dance teacher at Senn Arts Magnet High School in Chicago. Laura is also working on creating a state dance education organization in Illinois.

Victoria Moerchen
MS 1994 – Therapeutic Science
Ph.D. 2002 – Kinesiology

Victoria, an associate professor at UW-Milwaukee in the Department of Kinesiology in the College of Health Sciences, recently received a $784,984 award from the Health Resources and Services Administration to support and train undergraduate students from economically and educationally disadvantaged backgrounds for entry into graduate programs in maternal and child health fields.

Griffin James
BM 2003 – Music Education
Griffin is the band director at Baraboo (Wis.) High School. In the last year he has served the Wisconsin School Music Association by being on the Festival Music List Committee and the brass faculty for the Middle School State Honors Orchestra. Griffin, with his tuba-euphonium quartet "Chromos" recorded an album of music by UW-Madison professor emeritus John Stevens entitled "Chromos Plays The Music of John Stevens." This album will be released later this year through Beauport Classical.

Kelli Clemmensem
BSE 2003 – Elementary Education
Kelli is currently teaching sixth grade ELA and speech in Macomb, Mich., at Iroquois Middle School.

Janice Kroeger
Ph.D. 2003 – Curriculum & Instruction
As graduate coordinator of early childhood education at Kent State University, Janice has recently developed and leads an off-campus master's concentration in globalization and intercultural competence for teachers of young children in Summit County, North East Ohio.

Barbara L. Bales
2000 MS – Curriculum & Instruction
2004 Ph.D. – Curriculum & Instruction

Dr. Barbara Bales recently joined the University of Wisconsin System Administration as a Senior Academic Planner/Director for Educational Innovation and Strategic Initiatives.

Sara Pfister Johnston
MS 2004 – Rehabilitation Psychology
Sara, an assistant professor in rehabilitation counseling at Texas Tech University Health Sciences Center (TTUHSC), has received a TTUHSC President's Award for Inter-professional Teamwork for her contributions to TTUHSC Global Health Trips to Nicaragua and Peru. Sara and TTUHSC students have provided teaching materials, and education and training on behavioral interventions to the teachers and students at the special education school in Jinotega, Nicaragua. Sara has developed mental health education materials for community-based clinics in rural Lima, Peru.

Benjamin Madeska
BS 2004 – Art
This year, Benjamin’s paintings have been included in 17 different exhibitions across the country in various galleries, museums, and universities. These exhibitions include the 8th National Juried Show at Prince Street Gallery in New York and the 27th Annual Juried Show at the Las Vegas Contemporary Art Center in Las Vegas.

Sarah Van Dyke
BM 2004 – Music Education
Sarah recently opened “Revel,” a modern workshop and event space just off the Capitol Square in Madison. Revel curates a schedule of creative workshops (everything from modern calligraphy to craft cocktail mixing), has a drop-in Craft Bar for people to do accessible DIY projects while sipping a cocktail, and hosts private events in their inspiring space. When Sarah graduated she had aspirations of working in arts administration ... and 11-plus years and multiple career paths later that's finally where she has landed. It's never too late to chase your dreams, she says.

Alyssa Kaye Glanzman
BS 2005 – Communicative Disorders
Alyssa has been working with her current therapy company, Affirma, for seven years and was recently promoted to regional director. Alyssa oversees the rehabilitation departments (physical, occupational, and speech therapy) in skilled nursing facilities around the San Francisco Bay Area.

Christian Russell Carter
BS 2006 – Kinesiology
Christian completed a Ph.D. in sport physiology and performance from East Tennessee State University in 2013. Christian was promoted to director of strength and conditioning for Olympic sports at James Madison University in 2014 (Previously Senior Assistant 2013-14). Christian is also the strength and conditioning coach for USA Rugby Women's Eagles, and currently resides in Harrisonburg, Va.

Matthew Coan
MA 2006 – Library Sciences, Social Studies Education
Matthew is a librarian and the information literacy coordinator at Madison Area Technical College and is now in his 10th year. The former teacher reports that he is much better suited to library life. He adds: “Also it is much easier than teaching!”

Nellis book

Dan Uttech
BSE 2006 – Elementary Education
After five-and-a-half years of teaching and four years of staying home with his sons in Phoenix, Dan’s family has returned to Madison. Dan is teaching K3 REACH at Glendale Elementary on Madison's southeast side.

Elizabeth Grubb
Teaching Certification 2007 – World Language Education
Elizabeth is a dual language immersion teacher at Nuestro Mundo. She spent two years in bilingual international baccalaureate school in Madrid. Started as an itinerant Spanish teacher for fifth grade at Woodstock elementary. Had two years as Ell teacher in Beloit Wis., two years as dual language teacher at Robinson elementary in Beloit before transferring to Madison this year.

Heidi Hallman
BSE 1999 – Secondary Education/English
MS 2003 – Curriculum & Instruction
Ph.D. 2007 – Curriculum & Instruction

Heidi, an associate professor in the Department of Curriculum and Teaching at the University of Kansas, has published a book, “Millennial Teachers: Learning to Teach in Uncertain Times.” (Routledge) The book explores the tensions in teachers' early careers and how changing social, economic, and technological conditions of our current era both afford and constrain teachers' identities in contexts in which they work.

Kevin Reitman
BSE 2007 – Secondary Science Education
Kevin is currently the principal at Holy Family in Whitefish Bay, Wis. This is Kevin’s third year at the K4-8th grade Catholic school.

Stephanie Beckman
BSE 2008 – Secondary Education/French
Stephanie has been working in adult education for over five years and recently took a full-time position at Madison Area Technical College. Stephanie works in the Bridge Program, helping adult basic education level students get into high demand degree programs. Stephanie teaches literacy, study skills and workplace communication.

Tracey Schindler
MS 2008 – Counseling
Tracey continues working as a licensed professional counselor and psychometrist at Achieve Center, Inc. in Wausau, Wis. The non-profit provides assessments and therapy for children and adults with neurodevelopmental disorders. They have been training in on biofeedback and neurofeedback, which is interesting. Tracey is also excited to share that her son received a specialized race chair from Make A Wish this year!

Tom Van Winkle
MS 1995 – Educational Administration
Ph.D. 2008 – Educational Leadership & Policy Analysis

Tom was hired as the executive director of Williams-Mystic in July 2015, a study away semester for college undergrads from any major sponsored by Williams College and located at the Mystic Seaport Museum, the world's largest maritime museum and operating shipyard. Students spend a semester deeply immersed in an interdisciplinary study of our oceans and coasts. See more www.mystic.williams.edu

Rachel Doss
BSE 2008 – Elementary Education
Rachel relocated from Madison to Milwaukee and accepted a position as an academic advisor in the Lubar School of Business at UW-Milwaukee.

Sarah A. Robert
Ph.D. 2008 – Educational Policy Studies
Sarah earned tenure and was promotion to associate professor at the University at Buffalo's Graduate School of Education.

Susan Borden
MS 1998 – Educational Leadership and Policy Analysis
Ph.D. 2009 – Educational Leadership and Policy Analysis

Dr. Borden has taken a position with a prestigious private school in Doha, Qatar, serving students from 65 nationalities with a staff from more than 25 countries. Her work, in cooperation with a legacy Qatari family, is preparing the world leaders of tomorrow.

Jessica Bradley
BSE 2009 – Secondary Education/Spanish
This is Jessica’s 8th year teaching K-5 Spanish in the Greendale School District and part of the work has led Jessica to serve as the Wisconsin representative of the National Network of Early Language Learning as well as an executive board member on the Wisconsin Association For Language Teachers. Jessica has been collaborating and creating events with Dr. Helena Curtain such as Curriculum Writing Days to enable World Language educators to get away from disorganized and confusing text books to teachers creating authentic deep and rich thematic units. Jessica and her colleague were also keynote speakers at FLESFEST, a one-day conference that celebrates and supports beginning language learners and teachers. The work has been rewarding and has been attended by teachers all around the state of Wisconsin, but also the Midwest. The K-5 curriculum Jessica has designed with her team in the Greendale School District is being shared with teachers who want it so all teachers don't have to reinvent the wheel. Jessica considers this work a grass-roots endeavor to support teachers so that the world language classroom is one where teachers and students speak Spanish and engage in real life performance tasks that centers around communication.

Kevin Mason
Ph.D. 2009 – Curriculum & Instruction
Kevin is an associate professor of science education at the University of Wisconsin-Stout. At UW-Stout, he has served as the program director for the BS in science education degree since 2006 and the educative teacher performance assessment (EdTPA) coordinator since 2015. In 2014, Kevin published a book on teacher education titled: “Preparing for the Classroom: What Teachers Really Think About Teacher Education.” He is currently collaborating with colleagues in early childhood education and literacy education to write a series of children's books for kindergarten students to address the science concepts from the Next Generation Science Standards.

Nick Reichhoff
MS 2009 – Educational Leadership & Policy Analysis
After previously serving as a teacher, principal, and district assessment coordinator for the Mukwonago Area School District, Nick is now the district's director of student learning, overseeing curriculum, instruction, and human resources. http://www.masd.k12.wi.us/district/admindepts.cfm

Amanda Schmitt
BS 2009 – Art
Amanda has been appointed director of programming and development for UNTITLED, Art, an international art fair taking place in Miami Beach and San Francisco. Since graduating from UW-Madison with a BS in Art in 2009, Amanda has gained extensive curatorial and gallery experience, holding director positions as several galleries in New York City, most recently working with Marlborough Chelsea to develop the exhibition program for their Lower East Side gallery. Amanda has organized over 40 artist performances, screenings and exhibitions at galleries and alternative exhibition spaces around the world including Marlborough Chelsea (New York), SIGNAL (Brooklyn, N.Y.), The Suburban (Chicago); Guest Projects (London); A Thin Place (Berlin), among others, most recently developing and launching Untitled, radio, Untitled’s live radio broadcast which will continue in Miami Beach and at the inaugural edition of Untitled, San Francisco.

Wanda L Tetlan
Ph.D. 2009 – Curriculum & Instruction
Wanda is the founder of the CID Group, LLC. It educates and trains groups in cognitive-based information design.

Valencia Edochie
MS 2009 – Counseling Psychology
Valencia recently relocated to Texas from Georgia. She made a career change from the counseling field to higher education and is an Academic Advisor II at Texas A&M University. Valencia says she hopes to have dual licensure in Texas and Georgia as a Licensed Professional Counselor. Go Badgers!
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