2018 Scholars

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Alicia Holland
Alicia Holland graduated from the Bronx High School of Science and Binghamton University before serving as a City Year New York volunteer at I.S. 126 in Queens. She then earned a master’s degree at Teachers College, Columbia University, and she is currently completing her first year as an English language arts teacher at Kingsbridge International High School, located in the Bronx. On the rare occasions that she has spare time, she enjoys reading, writing, and practicing Italian. She tweets once in a while at @aliciamholland.

 

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Alona Whitebird
My name is Alona Whitebird. I am an AP United States History teacher in Moore, Oklahoma. I just completed my first year of teaching. My areas of interest include women’s history as well as human rights movements. I plan on using my experience from this workshop to continue implementing more minority history so that it becomes standard practice to include all people in history.

 

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Amelia Cates
Amelia Cates currently teach 8th grade Early United States History at Ockley Green Middle School in Portland Public Schools. Amelia is a Gay Straight Alliance advisor at their school and works on the district level to support LGBTQIA+ students through planning the district wide summit for all GSA students. Their curriculum and classroom weave together culturally relevant, trauma informed and universal designed learning to provide learning that is focused on students’ personal experiences and passions.

 

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Angela Rodriguez
Angela lives in the beautiful Bay Area with her husband and two children. She loves to be outside as much as possible. She walks in the neighborhood, hikes near the Pacific Ocean and swims outside all year round. When she’s not playing outside, she’s teaching English in room H203 at a high school of 1.200 students near SFO.

 

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Brittany Silva
Brittany Silva is a Social Studies teacher at Barringer Academy of the Arts and Humanities. As an urban educator and historian with a passion for teaching students to draw their own conclusions about history through historical thinking, she is committed to building a curriculum that promotes empathy, student voice and autonomy by teaching them to think critically about public history, society, and what it means for us today. She previously attended another NEH seminar in 2017, What did Independence Mean For Women? 1776-1876 in Philadelphia.

 

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CaroleAnne Weik
Lifelong native New Yorker, I am a cultural consumer. From books, to music, to art and architecture, I am passionate about all the things that Manhattan has to offer. Former French teacher turned English maven and then lunar librarian, I am lucky that my job is to read and share children’s books every day. Mom of two amazing daughters, grandma to Christopher, and sharing daily adventures with husband, Doug, family is so important to me. We are new to our neighborhood in Queens, and we love exploring the cuisines from around the world, concert performances in the park and at the stadium. And don’t forget baseball – it’s a metaphor for life. Nothing like a hot day and cool breeze watching the pinstripes hit one out of the park. Looking forward to this opportunity to explore history with some very talented folks.

 

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Catherine Brist
Catherine teaches 11th grade English and AP English at Validus Preparatory Academy, a small public school in the Bronx. Before becoming a New York City teacher she worked for a housing nonprofit in West Virginia and taught English as a Foreign Language as a Fulbright scholar in Indonesia.
Catherine earned a Bachelor’s degree in English Literature and Gender Studies from Arizona State University and a Master’s degree in English Education from Brooklyn College. She is originally from Madison, Wisconsin.

 

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Dana Haring
Dana Haring, Ed.D. has taught seventh grade English at Kalispell Middle School in Montana for so long, she now gets to hire former students to teach in her department. Recently, she has worked to encourage collaboration, enhancing learning across the curriculum. She also teaches for the University of Montana in the English Department. When possible, she spends time in the beautiful outdoors of Montana, whether on a crystal mountain lake in her kayak or on her front porch on the swing.

 

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David L. Morse
Hello everyone. I am a native Washingtonian living in Tacoma. I made a mid-life career change from banking to teaching, definitely the smartest move I ever made. Currently I teach both history and English, though it appears next year I will teach only Social Studies. I am very passionate about teaching and learning about history, so I am definitely looking forward to the institute. I have a variety of interests including travel, reading, genealogy and participating in Medieval/Renaissance festivals.

 

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Dwight Simon
Dwight Simon teaches and directs curriculum at Epiphany School in Boston, where he enjoys the chance to work creatively with colleagues and build dignifying learning environments for students. He focuses on history, religious studies, and reading enrichment subject areas and leads the annual 8th grade trip to Washington DC. Dwight studied history, education, and American religion in graduate work at Boston College and Harvard Divinity School.

 

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Eric G. Alvarez
Eric Alvarez has been an educator in Phoenix, Arizona for over 13 years. He currently teaches 8th grade Social Studies and High School Algebra. Eric serves as the College and Career Readiness Coordinator, the boys basketball and soccer coach, 7th & 8th grade team lead, and advisor for the school’s MESA (Math, Engineering, Science and Achievement) team. Outside of teaching and raising two boys with his wife, he freelance writes for recording artists and record labels and has co-authored articles in college texts on “Hip Hop and Education” and “Critical Multicultural Social Studies.”

 

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Erin Green
Erin teaches fifth grade language arts and social studies in Austin, Texas, and is currently pursuing her master’s degree in social studies education at The University of Texas. She is passionate about issues of social justice and teaching history through the lenses of the marginalized and rebellious.

 


Evelyn Copeland
Evie is an ELA/ENL teacher at Bronx International High School in the South Bronx. She works with 9th and 10th grade students who are new to both English and the United States. Before moving to New York five years ago, Evie lived and taught in Athens, Greece. She received her B.A. in International Relations and Spanish from Tufts University and her M.S. in TESOL from Long Island University.

 

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Geoffrey O. Cobb
Geoffrey Cobb is a teacher of Social Studies and English as a Second Language at the High School for Service and Learning in Flatbush, Brooklyn with over twenty-three years of experience. Fluent in five languages, including Russian, Polish, German and Spanish, Mr. Cobb has traveled widely on four continents. He is the author of three books on the history of Brooklyn as well as articles that have appeared in Irish-America magazine, the New York Irish History Roundtable and The Volunteer. Last year, his research on the Irish-American painter John Mulvany was featured in the New York Times. Mr. Cobb has previously taken part in four other National Endowment of the Humanities seminars. He has spoken at the Society for Old Brooklynites, the Consulate of the Irish Republic and at a conference on Norwegian- American immigration history in Bergen and Norwegian Radio 2.

 

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Jehan Giles

Jehan is currently a Middle School Special Education Teacher for Humanities and Science. Jehan began teaching for Project ARC and Planned Parenthood in St. Louis, Missouri as a peer educator and youth activist for comprehensive sexual health education and reproductive rights. She hasn’t left the classroom since.

Jehan has since taught Middle School in St. Louis and rural Missouri, Oak Cliff, Texas, and currently Brooklyn, New York. Jehan is interested in the intersection of food justice as it relates to racial inequalities and housing practices. In her free time, Jehan likes to use food science and ancestral practices to cook as well as reading, writing, painting and creating animations and cinemagraphs. This is Jehan’s second NEH Summer Institute with the first being Landmarks Jump At The Sun in Central Florida studying Zora Neale Hurston.

 

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Jessica Lovaas
Jessica Lovaas is a public school educator and organizer in New York City. She works at Harvest Collegiate High School, where she currently teaches courses in U.S. history, women’s and gender studies, and social movements. She has her Ph.D. in American Studies & Ethnicity from the University of South Carolina and over ten years of experience working in college access and education.

 


Kathleen E Moylan
I am a U.S. History teacher at Claremont Academy in Worcester, MA. I have a passion for local history, women’s history, and African American history, so this institute is a perfect fit. As an added bonus, my daughter lives in Brooklyn! I look forward to learning and sharing ideas with this esteemed group of educators and scholars.

 

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Kristie L. Miller
Kristie Miller is the district librarian for Alexander Central Schools. She has a Master’s Degree in Library and Information Science from the Pratt Institute in Brooklyn and a Bachelor’s Degree in Women’s Studies from the State University of New York at New Paltz. She enjoys providing opportunities for students to expand their world view whether digitally, through print or in-person with travel experiences in the US and abroad. She makes her home in Upstate New York with her family and a couple of rescue dogs, and likes to bike on the Erie Canal, eat tacos, and read books. Social Media Handle: @pushupmyglasses

 

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Lori Holguin
Lori Holguin works for Wilkes County Schools, teaching English as a Second Language. She has a B.A in English, with a minor in Education, as well as, a M.Ed in Instructional Design. She has taught both high school and elementary school and has also taught abroad in Cancun, Mexico. Lori is married with two teenage children.

 

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Mackenzie Nikolova
Mackenzie Nikolova currently teaches tenth grade honors British Literature and eleventh grade AP Language and Composition at Fiorello H. LaGuardia High School for Music & Arts and the Performing Arts in Manhattan. Originally from Cleveland, Ohio, Mackenzie earned a bachelor of arts in English from John Carroll University and then earned a master’s degree in Secondary English Education from the University of Pennsylvania. She has taught in private, suburban, and urban educational settings, and her favorite genre is twentieth century American Literature.

 

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Melody Andrews
Melody Andrews is currently an English teacher and Student Council Advisor at Potomac Senior High School, in Prince William County, Virginia, a suburb of Washington, D.C. Melody also has experience teaching Adult English Language Learners and College Composition. Hailing from a long line of educators, Melody strives to be an advocate for both students and teachers. In 2016 she was selected as a National Education Association Early Career Educator Fellow and traveled to Brussels to collaborate with early-career educators from around the world to discuss implementation strategies for the UN’s Education 2030 Framework. Melody received her B.A. in Communications & African American Studies at Mississippi State University and her M.A. in English and African American Literature from North Carolina A&T State University. She is currently pursuing her Doctorate of Education in Leadership and Policy Studies at Howard University. In her spare time Melody enjoys yoga flows and all things hip hop. You can follow her on Twitter @ms_mandrews and Instagram @msandrewsteaches

 

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Nataliya Braginsky
Nataliya Braginsky is a high school teacher living and working in New Haven, Connecticut. Certified in both social studies and English, Nataliya has worked in public schools for the past ten years teaching a variety of courses. She is currently teaching Contemporary Law, Journalism, and American Studies. In addition to teaching, Nataliya is also a core organizer with the New Haven Educators’ Collective, a group that works to protect public schools from privatization, and that fights for racial, economic, and social justice in the community.

 

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Nicole Riordan
I am thrilled to be a part of Freedom For One, Freedom For All Summer Institute. I have been teaching U.S History for seventeen years at Ridgewood High School in Ridgewood, New Jersey. I received my B.A. in History from Loyola University in Maryland and my M.A. in Sociology from Brooklyn College. I have long been interested in the intersection of race and gender in the study of history, and try to incorporate those themes throughout my teaching. I am so excited to have a new opportunity to study in my hometown of Brooklyn, where I currently live with my husband and 2 year old daughter.

 

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Patrick D Sprinkle
Patrick Sprinkle (@psprinkle) is a tenth year history and government teacher at the New York City Lab School for Collaborative Studies. Patrick is a first generation college graduate and earned his undergraduate degree in Political Science from The Ohio State University, and graduate degrees from Columbia University and Ashland University. Patrick’s current academic interests include Lyndon Johnson and the Great Society, American labor unions, and electoral politics.

 

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Pete Lapré
Pete Lapré holds a M.A. from Teachers College, Columbia University and has spent the last 10 years teaching Social Studies, predominantly Global History, Economics, and Government, at Park East High School in East Harlem. Pete has extensive experience designing curricula and assessments and has worked for the past 4 years as a writer for the NYC DOE Social Studies Passport. He has designed NYC’s MOSL assessments and published lessons with numerous cultural institutions. He has dedicated his career to identifying high quality resources that are engaging and accessible to high school students and creating tools that are practical approaches for teaching students to think historically.

 

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Pete Moran
Pete Moran has been working for twenty-one years as a teacher in technology and social studies.

 

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Richard M. Capozzi
Richard M. Capozzi teaches American and British & World Literature at Brooklyn Technical High School. Next year, he will also teach AP Capstone Seminar. Before coming to Tech, Richard taught at Norman Thomas High School, where he designed and taught several blended instruction classes, recruited students for The Writers’ Café, and served as chapter leader. Richard believes in the value of global citizenship education, which places a premium on the development of wisdom, courage, and compassion in both students and teacher.

 

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Sally Mitchell
I have taught language arts in the Boise area for the past eighteen years; I currently teach IB Language & Literature at Renaissance High School. I received my BA in English in 1996, and my MA in Curriculum & Instruction in 2004. Throughout my career, I have engaged in various forms of grassroots activism as a member of my teachers’ union. My loves include theatre, film, art, music, literary fiction, traveling to beautiful places, and having adventures with my husband and two young sons.

 

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Seta A. Ghazarian
Seta Ghazarian has taught English in Hesperia, California since 2002 and has been the school’s Campus Literacy Coach since 2015. She has served as an AP Reader for the English Language and Composition Exam for eight years. She also works as a community activist and organizer whose main focus is to engage more people in the political process. She completed her BA in English from CSU San Bernardino in 1999 and her MA in English Composition from the same institution in 2001. In her spare time she loves spending time with family and friends, reading, and practicing yoga.

 

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Shanell Middleton
I’m Shanell, a Miami native currently teaching in the Metro-Atlanta area. I received my BA from Florida International University, prior to the construction of the bridge, in Political Science. I also minored in African New World Studies and Women’s Studies. For as long as I can remember I have had a passion for African-American literature, history & the African-American experience.