Teacher of the Year

Ms. Werner – Bolton High School

Mr. Miller III – Bunnell High School

Ms. MeMeo – Cheshire High School

Dr. Johnson – CREC Academy of Computer Science and Engineering

Ms. Scott – Daniel Hand High School

Ms. DeJarlais – Edwin O. Smith High School

Ms. MacKay – Nonnewaug High School

Mrs. Allen – Putnam High School

Dr. Romanova – Scared Heart Academy

Mr. Aitkenhead – Staples High School

Mrs. Able – Simsbury High School

Mrs. Churchill –  The Woodstock Academy

Teacher of the Year

Dario Sarmiento Loayza- Coventry School District
Timothy Sanderson – Glastonbury School District
Eileen Marquez – New Britain School District
Mikala Wells – Plainville School District
Samuel Tucker – Portland School District
Tenley Stoltz – Somers School District
Melanie Zamorski – Hartford School District
Laura LaFlamme – Suffield School District

UConn ECE Instructor Summer Travel: They did it all!

Aleatha Pelloni, Norwich Technical High School, Cincinnati, OH Emergency Chemical Response Certification and the Emergency Chemical Response Train the Trainer Course. It was an intensive and enlightening experi­ence that has enhanced my knowledge and skills in emergency preparedness. I am committed to ensuring the safety and well-being of our students, and this certification will further enable me to respond effectively in any unforeseen circumstances.

Alyssa MacLean, Robert E Fitch High School, Diamond Cove Island, ME Exploring and having fun.

Amber Hammond, E C Goodwin Technical HS, St John USVI Spent time on St. John’s beautiful beaches

Amy McLeod, Bridgeport Reg Aqua Sci Tech, Acadia National Park Explored the beautiful national park

Amy Bigelow, Franklin Academy, Exeter, NH Phillips Exeter Academy for the week-long Anja S. Greer Conference on Mathematics and Technology. I immersed myself in the high school student experience by taking 2 classes (complete with hours of nightly homework after a full day) — Problem Solving in Geometry & Math of Gerry­mandering. When not in class or doing homework, I attend­ed a wealth of talks and small group discussions ranging from mastery-based grading to playing with bubbles to building the classroom community.

Andrea Kremzar, Trumbull High School, New River Gorge, WV I explored the trails and all that nature has to offer!

Angela Gulielmetti, Cheshire High School, ME I spent time at the beach and prepared a new course on Fin-de-siecle Vienna that I am now teaching at CCSU.

Beth McCormick, Portland High School, Alaska 1st ever cruise to Alaska from Seattle with 2 of my siblings

Bonnie Johnston, Marine Science Magnet HS, North Cascades, WA I traveled to multiple National Parks in the Southwest where I learned more about the processes that shaped the land over millions of years. I also visited multiple dams and learned about Hydroelectric power, and its impact upon human communities and the surrounding ecosystems.

Brendan Wilkosz, Berlin High School, UT Utah for grading AP Exams professionally and Maine to hike Mount Katahdin

Brett Flowers, Christian Heritage School, Acadia National Park, ME Hiked the mountains of Acadia – the Bee Hive, the Bubbles. Also biked the carriage roads through the park!

Catherine Kotula, East Windsor High School, Pensacola, FL Visited the naval museum in Pensacola and saw the Blue Angels fly which includ­ed the first female demonstration pilot in the Blue Angels: Amanda Lee.

Chase Martin, Greenwich High School, Glacier National Park, MT I completed a four day, 50 mile backpack­ing trip in the North Fork area of Glacier National Park. I’m passionate about hiking and backcountry camping. This was a personal, non-academic trip.

Chelsea Dodds, North Branford High School, CA Fund for Teachers grant to study John Steinbeck. Studied Steinbeck’s life and works and the setting for Of Mice and Men. I had the opportunity to visit the archives at the National Steinbeck Center and meet with leading scholars on Steinbeck.

Christopher Lacilla, Holy Cross High School, Cape Cod, MA My family went to Cape Cod this summer for a week in July. In all honesty, Cape Cod is where I find so much peace and solace. My dream is to live there one day.

Christopher Tait, Ridgefield High School, Charleston, SC We went to South Carolina to tour Charleston, go to the beach, and enjoy some family time!

Christopher Darby, Middletown High School, Kingsport, TN This summer my wife and I traveled to Tennessee and South Carolina to visit family. We also attended a family reunion in Sand Diego and visted Joshua Tree National Park.

Deb Field, South Windsor High School, NC A week hiking in the mountains, a week in OBX

Diane Szymanski-Herr, Waterford High School, ME Jackson labs PD for BIO 1107. I had a refresher on biotechnology technique and learned about bioinforatics resources and labs. I also learned how to order their free kits for my classroom.

Eileen Marquez, New Britain High School, Orlando, FL Educators Rising National Competitions are performance-based competitive events in which aspiring educators demonstrate their knowledge, skills, and leadership in education. With a blend of individual and team events, competi­tions are authentic, engaging opportunities for rising educators to stretch their creativity, commitment, and professionalism.

Elizabeth Criscuolo, The Morgan School, Salem, MA Visit family and introduce my new baby boy to his cousins, aunts & uncles, grandparents, and great-grandparents! The picture shows my grandparents (my son’s great grandparents), my son (in the red overalls), and my son’s first cousins (the three on the right) and second cousin (baby on the left)

Ethan Brown, Bristol Central High School, Puerto Rico We stayed in the jungle, raced through the mountains, explored caves, swam under waterfalls, went to the beach, and visited the forts in San Juan.

Friso Hermans, Shepaug Valley School, CO I took the train from New York to California and Colorado. I took my bike with me, and went mountain biking in Truckee, Point Reyes, Boulder and Cody.

Gregg Basbagill, Trumbull High School, Mount Whitney, CA I wanted to summit the highest point in California (the highest point in the US outside of Alaska). This year, because of the historic snowfall in the Sierras, this was mostly a snowfield trek, requiring an ice axe and microspikes. It was a great adventure!

Holly Turner, Bridgeport Reg Aqua Sci Tech, Stellwagen Bank, Cape Cod, MA

James Vicario, Cheshire High School, Cape Cod, MA We went on a family vacation- lots of swim­ming, sea shell collecting and bird watching

James Royce, Xavier High School, Plym­outh, MA I visted the “living museum” of the Plimouth Village, Pautuxet Village, and recreation of the Mayflower (Mayflower II) with my family.

Jennifer Wood, Mark T Sheehan High School, Disney, FL We went to Disney for a Dance the World event. My stepdaughter danced in Disney Springs and Epcot and my son loved seeing the characters and eating ice cream.

Jennifer Stefanowicz, Stonington High School, Vieques, Puerto Rico My family and I night-kayaked through the bioluminescent bay in Vieques, hiked through el Yunque, splashed in the waterfalls, explored las Cavernas del Río Camuy, and savored the delicious food.

John Girard, Plainville High School, Brunswick, ME I attended a week-long professional development sponsored by The Jackson Laboratory learning more about genomics and bioinformatics.

Josephina Ferreiro-Morodo, Fairchild Wheeler Sci Magnet, FL I spent time reading, relaxing and reviewing curriculum. Read “Ornament of the World” by Maria Rosa Menocal and “Solda­dos de Salamina” (reread) by Javier Cercas.

Julie Barker, Cheshire High School, Syracuse, NY Syracuse International Horse Show. My American Saddlebred “Heir Raid NKF” participated in his first horse show!

Karen Cook, Norwich Free Academy, Yorba Linda, CA Nixon Presidential Library for Gilder Lehrman Seminar on U.S. Foreign Policy

Karima El-Hamraoui, Lyman Hall High School, CO First time going to Midwest and doing road trip for 2 weeks. i visited with my youngest daughter all the State park and first time doing sand boarding

Karon McGovern, New Fairfield High School, New England Appalachian Trail Trying to complete Appalachian Trail miles from NJ to VT

Kathleen Mack, Stratford High School, Block Island, RI My family (husband, teenager, and cat) sailed to Block Island on my Hunter 340 sailboat and spent a wonderful week on a mooring in the Great Salt Pond. We hiked the Clay Head Trail and enjoyed the great weather.

I turned my car into a camper and camped all over CT and NY states. I built a platform in my car and camped off the Appalachian Trail. In the Shenandoah Valley, I saw a full rainbow.

Laura Laflamme, Suffield High School, USA 13 states to camp and kayak. Drove over 5,000 miles throughout the eastern United States. Besides camping and kayaking, I was able to upload 100’s of photos of plants for my coursework.

Lauren Korman, Academy of Our Lady of Mercy, CO, WY, SD Visiting American landmarks such as Mount Rushmore, sites on the Overland Trails, old mining towns of the west,visiting the Badlands, Devils Tower, Yellowstone, Hiking in the Rockies and Grand Tetons.

Lisa Abel, Simsbury High School, Uncasville, CT I participated in the CT Teacher of the Year Council events as a state finalist including the Empowered to Lead Symposium at Mohegan Sun and the Mystic Seaport Workshop. I served on a panel for educators about teacher experi­ences, learned about educational programming available to teachers in CT, and formed meaningful connections with teachers in many districts.

Lori Bennett, Wamogo Reg High School, Everglades, FL South Florida for an Eco trip with students – Everglades, toured 10,000 Islands, Snorkeled & kayaked in the Keys, toured a Turtle Hospital & Dolphin Research Facility.

Maria Miraballes, Westhill High School, WA Personally I did a 12 day road trip through the Pacific Northwest through Washington and Oregon. It was amazing. Professionally I’m a master teacher for the Gilder Learner Institute and co-taught a course with Professor Margaret O’Mara from the University of Washington.

Nicole Wilcox, Southington High School, Alaska Observe Alaska’s approach to preserving natural resources (includ­ing wildlife rehabilitation/care, agri-tourism, gold mining, marine/ aquatics and outdoor recreation) to create related hands on learning opportunities for agriculture students.

Shelley Osowiecki, RHAM High School, MO I drove to Montana with my family, including my dog, and my sister’s family to visit our extended family. We explored Badlands National Park in South Dakota and Yellowstone National Park in Wyoming. The Gran Prismatic and the Little Falls are my favorite sections.

Susan Palmberg, Edwin O Smith High School, Cambridge, MA MIT for the Lemelson-MIT invention education Professional Development and to UConn for the DaVinci Program specifically the Virtual Reality session. UConn DaVinci program I learned how Virtual Reality can be used in the classroom. The takeaways I received will be used in the ECE Multivariable course. For the Lemelson-MIT workshop, I learned how stu­dents can be inventors and how I as a teacher can facilitate.

Tim Sweigard, Orville H Platt High School, Jackson Hole, Wyoming/Yellowstone and Teton National Parks

Trina Bowman, Academy of Our Lady of Mercy, Plymouth, MA, We took in the sites – historic Leyden Street, 1749 Courthouse, Burial Hill, Brewster Gardens,Plymouth Rock, Plimoth-Patuxet Museum, Mayflower II

Xinyu Li, Glastonbury High School, RI Block Island, Philadelphia, and Mount WashingtonI traveled with my family during summer time and enjoyed a lot of good food, scenery, and stories we heard along the way

Alina Britchi, Daniel Hand High School, Taiwan I participated in the International Teacher Week Program (ITW2023) organized by CERN, European Center for Nuclear Research. I was one of the four American teachers and one of the 33 teachers from 24 different countries. We attended lectures given by experts in the field, collaborated in lab and group activities and visited numerous sites, many not open to the general public.

Dawn Demeo, Cheshire High School, Uruguay I did a Fulbright for Global Teaching Exchange program.

Danielle Melino, Housatonic Valley Regional HS I traveled to Ireland and Scotland in July. While there we toured Kildare National Stud Farm, Dublin, Edinburgh, Ruthven Farm, Blarney castle, Belfast, Loch Ness, and Culloden Battlefields. This was a custom Agriculture trip that I designed for students and staff.

Gina Gallo Reinhard, Bristol Central High School, Italy I am researching street art in Italy

Jessica Chapman, Norwich Free Academy, El Salvador I look a year leave to teach at an American international school in San Salvador, El Salvador.

Jeremy Taylor, Old Saybrook High School, Alberta Province, CA Visited friends at University of Alberta, and toured national parks at Banff

John LaMendola, Brookfield High School, Italy, France, Germany, Austria and Switzerland Traveled with American Music Abroard Honor Bands, Choirs and Orchestras and performed in various locations throughout Europe

Joseph Deldebbio, John F Kennedy High School, Tulum, Quintana Roo, Mexico Toured the Mayan ruins with my family. What a beautiful and captivating ancient city, such well-preserved temples & stunning coastal views.

Kacey Howard, Glastonbury High School, Peru My husband and I hiked the Inca Trail to Machu Picchu. We embarked on a 5 day homage to Machu Picchu. The trail is around 25 miles and has an elevation gain of 7,972 feet!


Karen Oliver, Glastonbury High School, Magog and Quebec City (province of Quebec) Walking, bookstores, restaurants, vineyard, reading

Kristen Sparks, Coventry High School, Bermuda

Maria Sanhueza, Wethersfield High School, Peru Visited family and went to celebration of the town of Cabana.

Marianna Wikarska, Nathan Hale-Ray High School, Gaspesie

Mario Ramos, Glastonbury High School, Salamanca, España Chaperoned 13 students from Glastonbury High School

Mary-Ann Sagnella, John F Kennedy High School, Italy I interviewed multi-ethnic Italian students who live biculturalism within Italian society with a Fund for Teachers Grant. I traveled to: Rome, Florence, Milan, Naples, Caserta, Terracina and Fondi.

Miao Hwang, Miss Porters School, Taiwan Take care of my 90 year old mother and meet with teachers who teach in US.

Nora Mocarski, Canton High School, Hopewell Rocks, Canada Travelled to experience the extreme tidal change – 36 foot tide.

Phillip Youker, Trumbull High School, The Canary Islands, Spain Through a Fund for Teachers Grant I was able to visit the Canary Islands. While there I toured two world-leading observatory installations on the islands of Tenerife and La Palma.

Rita Jackson, Warren Harding High School , Brazil, Dominican Republic I participate with a Missions Team who provides clothes, books and other supplies to needy families in the poor areas in Brazil and D.R. We also do fun things with the children of the towns with songs, dances and games. We typically leave them with school supplies and other necessaties.

Sarabeth Markham, Glastonbury High School, Japan Utilizing the amazing Shinkansen (bullet train) system, I introduced my four children to the beauty, culture, and cuisine of Kyoto, Osaka, and Tokyo.

Stacey Scapeccia, Stratford High School, Guatemala Health ambassador with Squads Abroad


Fall 2023 PD Overview


By Stefanie Malinoski


This fall in Early College Experience we’ve hosted eighteen professional development workshops for groups of Early College Experience Instructors who offer UConn courses in English, Sustainable Plant and Soil Science, American Studies, Environmental Science, Philosophy, Physics, Economics, Human Rights, European History, Sociology, Animal Science, Communications, Music, Chemistry, Chinese, and Math. Our ECE affiliated library media specialists also met for a virtual training with Babbidge Library staff.  Another twenty-four events are slated to occur during the winter intersession and spring semester either in person or virtually. Notes on some of the events which occurred during the fall semester are below:


Sustainable Plant and Soil Science Instructors meet in person at Southington High School with Faculty Coordinator, Julia Kuzovkina. The workshop included diverse activities including a field practicum on analyzing soil for specific purposes, a discussion and update on plant diseases, and learning about new trends in the landscape industry. The group also discussed students’ preparation for future careers in the Green Industry and took part in a hands-on floral workshop where teachers were introduced to beautiful fall arrangements which can be introduced in their Floral Art classes.


American Studies Instructors were provided with a copy of Ann Petry’s novel “The Street”. Shawn Salvant, Professor of English, and Africana Studies from UConn spoke to the group about the text and what it means to revisit the classic novel in 2023. Instructors led by Faculty Coordinator Laurie Wolfley then designed curriculum focused on “The Street” which was shared with all participants for future uses in their American Studies classroom.


Chemistry Instructors participated in a hands-on lab activity with Faculty Coordinator, Dr. Fatma Selampinar after hearing from Dr. Kerry Gilmore from UConn’s Chemistry Department. Dr. Gilmore’s research surrounds Green Chemistry and its facilitating impact on photochemistry. Dr. Kerry and the Instructors discussed how these chemistries can be performed in the classroom and opened up the discussion for collaborative work in the area in the development of new processes, screening natural catalysts, and bringing advanced chemical processes to their classrooms.


Economics Instructors met for their professional development workshop and heard from fellow ECE Instructor Ian Tiedemann from Greenwich High School, Scott A. Wolla, Economic Education Officer, Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis and Ariel Solomon, Curriculum Designer, Marginal Revolution University. Ian Tiedemann highlighted his students’ who created a podcast script for the 2023 issue of the Journal of Future Economists. The theme was “Economics of Globalization”. Ian’s students submitted their podcast script titled “It’s a (s)Mall World: Globalization, E-Commerce, and Shopping Malls” which can be reviewed in the Journal of Future Economists. Scott A. Wolla’s shared a teaching activity “Teaching Market Structures with Gum” and discussed “Monetary Policy has Changed. Has Your Teaching?” Ariel Slonim, Curriculum Designer, Marginal Revolution University presented on: “Supply, Demand, Action! Harnessing interactive tools to teach supply and demand” and “Cracking the Code: Understanding GDP and Inflation through interactive tools.” ECE Faculty Coordinator for Economics, Natalia V. Smirnova discussed “Teaching Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion Topics in Economics”.


Environmental Science Instructors met with Faculty Coordinator, Dr. Morty Ortega at Sessions Woods Wildlife Management Area in Burlington, CT where they interacted with staff from the Department of Environmental Protection learning about the private lives of bears and bobcats and habitats.


Marine Science Instructors set out aboard the “Mystic Seaport Express” captained by Liz Sistare (UConn ’13), Waterfront Operations Supervisor on the Mystic River with Faculty Coordinator, Dr. Claudia Koerting during their professional development workshop. The group of 13 teachers conducted water testing by taking readings using instruments that measure salinity, oxygen, and temperature. They deployed a water sampler to retrieve water samples near the bottom of the river and gathered surface water samples as well. Instructors performed two plankton tows and brought samples back for microscopic evaluation. An additional two sample sites were chosen, and all samples returned with the group to the seaport sailing center where they tested for chlorophyll content using a fluorometer and performed a light/dark experiment with water from two sites. At the sailing center the group ran their analysis, looked at the plankton tow and compared oxygen uptake in the light/dark bottle experiment. Conversations were held about how these samples could inform scientists and regulators about policy guiding water use in the river. By the end of the day Instructors learned a new method, a new instrument, and made new connections and shared ideas to implement in their UConn Marine Science courses.


Philosophy Instructors met with Faculty Coordinator Prof. Mitch Green who led a discussion on “post-truth” epistemology after instructors watched, a Ted Talk by UConn Professor Michael Lynch: “How to See Past Your Own Perspective and Find Truth.”


More information and pictures from the many professional development workshops hosted this fall can be reviwed on “ECE PD Blog” on the Early College Experience website. Dates for spring workshops will be posted to the ECE website’s “Dates to Remember” section once details are finalized. We look forward to continuing to utilize the winter months with additional virtual workshop opportunities and welcome our community members to campus in the spring for more professional development events.




News to Know

NEACEP Conference 2023

In their first post-pandemic regional confer­ence, attendees from the six New England states and beyond gathered at the University of Rhode Island, Feinstein Campus in Providence for the New England Alliance of Concurrent Enrollment Partnerships (NEACEP) on Friday, May 5, 2023. The theme was “Up­ward and Outward” and over a dozen breakout session centered on themes of equity, policy, and teaching and learning. Dianne Lassai Barker, Na­tional Alliance of Concurrent Enroll­ment Partnerships (NACEP) Director of State Engagement, addressed a group of nearly 100 people with an overview of NACEP and thoughts on equity and inclusion. UConn ECE was well-represented, on the planning committee, as a sponsor, and through presentations. University High School of Science & Engineering (Hartford) Principal, Sean Tomany, and UConn ECE American Studies Instructor, Jennifer Todisco, presented “Expand­ing ECE Offerings and Equity”; Jake Skrzypiec and Sarah Wiederecht (Manchester High School) and Chris Buckley (Brookfield High School) UConn ECE Human Rights Instruc­tor presented “Building Bridges: Human Rights & the Early College Experience Classroom”; and our own, Chris Todd, represented UConn ECE in two sessions. His first presentation, “Navigating the Tide: Expanding Pathways to Concurrent Instructor Certification in an Era of Teacher Un­certainty,” Todd spoke to the struggle with the recruitment and retention of teachers. He was also part of a panel for the “Expanding Pathways to Postsecondary Readiness through Dual Credit” session with others from the state: Ajit Gopalakrishnan, CT State Department of Education; John Maduko, President, CT State Com­munity College; Anne Dichele, Quin­nipiac University, CT; Karen Hynick, CEO, Quinebaug Valley Community College; and Thomas Coley, Executive Vice President of Strategic Partner­ships and Enterprise Performance, CT State Community College.


UConn Pre-College Summer PCS is growing with options! With over 30 course of­ferings for students to experience in the areas of Fine Arts, Digital Media, Pre-Med, STEM, and Social Scienc­es, we are also now offering a credit course option. Students now have the opportunity to earn two credits by taking the AH 2001: Medical Termi­nology course. The course provides an introduction to and mastery of medical terminology. Students will be studying the location, functions, ter­minology and pathology of the organs of the various systems of the body will be studied. In a unique two-week format, the course will be delivered in a distance learning model during the first week followed by a second week of a hands-on, residential experience. To check out the full list of course of­ferings visit, (contributed by Melanie Banks)


Italian Studies Workshop This winter, Italian Studies at UConn (ILCS) launched a pilot Professional Development workshop series for teachers of Italian across Connecticut and the Tri-State area. The series, en­titled, “Lasciatemi cantare: Teaching Italian Language and Culture through Music,” was generously supported by funds from the Consulate General of Italy in NY and ECE and was deliv­ered in hybrid form – simultaneously online and in person. The workshop’s four Saturday morning sessions in January and February focused on using music theory and Italian the­ater, opera, and popular music in the language classroom. UConn Italian Ph.D. candidates David Lara and Rosy Pitruzzello (who is also a Plainville HS teacher) led two sessions each with presentations and interactive ex­ercises aimed at expanding the didac­tic benefits of incorporating different kinds of music into language instruc­tion. The combination of language pedagogy, songs, and music videos led to lively discussions among the participants, all of whom came away with access to new materials, a collab­orative space for continued develop­ment, and many practical applications for their classrooms. ILCS hopes to bring the workshop back next year with a different topic of focus. Please contact Tina Chiappetta-Miller with any suggestions at: (con­tributed by Tina Chiappetta-Miller)

Congratulations to our UConn ECE Faculty Coordinators on their promotions

  • Promotion to Associate Professor In-Residence

- Emma Bojinova, Agricultural and Resource Economics

  • Promotion to Professor

- Oksan Bayulgen, Political Science

  • Promotion to Professor In-Residence

- Fatma Selampinar, Chemistry

Congratulations to Educational Lead­ership UConn ECE Faculty Coordina­tor, Dr. Danielle DeRosa, for defend­ing her dissertation, Exploring Sense of Community for Undergraduate Women in Sport Management.


UConn ECE HDFS 1070: Individual & Family Development Instructor, Mr. Becker, from Daniel Hand High School gave a TEDx Talk about his passion for wellness and journey on becoming a teacher, called The skill of wellness: maximizing your health to benefit the world. He talks about, “How a transformational moment at 15 would inspire my life’s work… I teach to enhance the wellness of my students; I coach to help students be­come respectful, responsible, honest, & caring people who will impact the world for good.”


UConn ECE Chinese Talent Show

By Jessica Dunn | Photos by Gordon Daigle and Mike Illuzi
UConn ECE Faculty Coordinator of the Year, Dr. Chunsheng Yang, brought back the UConn ECE Chinese Talent show to the benefit of 175 students this past March. With 100 UConn ECE Students, and about 75 UConn undergraduates, this event provided a space for students to work together to demonstrate their Chinese skills through various abilities and learn to embrace cultural diversity. As Dr. Yang explained in an interview for the UConn Daily Campus, “the Chinese talent show provides an avenue for both high school Chinese learners and UConn undergrad Chinese learn­ers to showcase their Chinese language skills and have fun while socializing with peers both from other CT high schools and UConn undergraduate students.”

Participants from Connecticut high schools were students enrolled in UConn Chinese 1114 through UConn ECE and represented Amity Regional High School, Simsbury High School, Granby Memorial High School, Hall High School, Miss Porter’s School, and Norwich Free Academy. Along with attendance from high schools across the state, there was also a wide variety of talents showcased at the event. From a Kung Fu performance from Amity Regional High School and a Gourd Flute performance from Miss Porter’s School to an authentic Dragon Dance from Hall High School, the talent was extraordinary, and it was evident the students worked very hard through­out the year to improve their Chinese language skills and gain the confi­dence to perform at UConn in front of their peers.
We commend all students for their willingness to participate and look forward to offering this event to fu­ture UConn ECE students.


UConn ECE项目负责人杨春生是 2023 年度 ECE Faculty Coordinator Award获得者,他于今年3月组织了UConn ECE中文才艺秀。此次活动汇聚了100 多名UConn ECE 学生和75名 UConn 本科生,为学生提供了一个共同展示中文技能、欣赏文化多样性的平台。正如杨博士在接受UConn Daily Campus采访时所说:“中文才艺秀为高中中文学习者和 UConn 中文学习者提供了展示中文技能、与其他高中和 UConn本科生社交的机会。”
才艺秀的高中参与者都是UConn ECE中文课程的学生,包括Amity Regional High School、Simsbury High School、Granby Memorial High School、Hall High School、Miss Porter’s School 和 Norwich Free Acad¬emy。来自不同高中的同学展示了各种各样的才艺,从 Amity Regional High School 的功夫表演,到 Miss Porter’s School 的葫芦丝表演,到 Hall High School 的正宗舞龙表演,同学们个个才华横溢,在展示中文语言能力的同时,也表现出精湛的表演才能。
我们为所有参与的同学喝彩,并期待将类似活动扩大到UConn ECE的其他项目中去。
Translated by UConn ECE Chinese Faculty Coordinator, Dr. Chunsheng Yang

Congratulations to the UConn ECE Student Scholarship Winners

Increased Scholarship amounts garner more competitive application pool.
By Jessica Dunn
UConn Early College Experience increased the student scholarship amount for each available award to $1,000 this year! For many years, the scholarship award was $500 each, and we are excited to be able to increase the value of these scholarships to $1,000 each. Partly due to the increase in value for these scholarships, we received a record number of incredibly competitive applications, making the selection process difficult.
Through a rigorous review process, the UConn Early College Experience Office selected six outstanding 2022-2023 UConn ECE Students as Scholarship winners, awarding each a $1,000 scholarship to be used at any institution. All winners are high school seniors, who have taken or are currently taking at least one UConn Early College Experience course and have excelled in the area in which they submitted their project. Additionally, applications are scored on a holistic rubric which aims to capture a variety of factors including academic success, future academic aspirations, and demonstrated financial need.
Winners talk about their projects in this video. Additional information about UConn ECE Scholarships can be found on our Student Scholarships page.

Excellence in the Arts, Humanities, or Social Sciences

Winners demonstrate academic achievement and a potential for future academic and professional accomplishments in a field focusing on the Arts, Humanities, and/or Social Sciences.

CREC Academy of Computer Science and Engineering
Original Project, “The Real Talk on: Anxiety and Depression”
Hall High School
Personal Essay, “Children of Sunshine and Rain”

Excellence in Science, Technology, Engineering, or Mathematics

Winners demonstrate academic achievement and a potential for future academic and professional accomplishments in the fields of Science, Technology, Engineering, and/or Mathematics.

Trumbull High School
Original Coding of a Murder Mystery Game
New Britain High School
Research Paper on Serotonin Receptors

Excellence in Civic and Community Engagement

Winners are academically successful, are already making a positive difference in their town or neighborhood, and are inspiring others to do the same. The students chosen for this award are UConn ECE Students who demonstrate ambition and self-drive evidenced by outstanding achievement in both school and their community.

James Hillhouse High School
Youth Director at Dixwell Community Q House
OLIVER TUFF (center)
New Canaan High School
Founder of Feeding 500

UConn ECE Magazine Cover Submissions

We challenged our community to submit artwork with the prompt: Growth Mindset: Challenging the status quo and received many fabulous submissions.
First Place/cover
Jane Freiler, Fairfield Ludlowe High School
The Voyager, mixed media
This piece is a connection of the person I am through the places I have been and the places I have yet to go. The strings tie the self of selfhood to the natural land, the county, and our memories. I constructed this piece from the parts of my past, the thread I used to make friendship bracelets, an old map I weathered and tore, and simple package tape from the closet. The package tape transfer is a simple and beautiful method to blend separate images, such as my photograph of the girl, seamlessly with the map.
Second Place
Lila Gillon, E.O. Smith High School
A Hyacinth Peeks Out from Among Green Stalks, photo
This issue’s theme of a “growth mindset” immediately calls to mind the joyful perseverance and adaptability of spring plants. In this close-up photo, a purple hyacinth is dwarfed by the tall green stalks all around it yet still manages to bloom. I imagine the flower’s undaunted display of color as symbolizing a challenge to the status quo - regardless of what else surrounds it, it can thrive and proudly showcase its unique qualities.


Third Place
Ella Sigurdsson, Ridgefield High School
Unplugging, mixed media
Social media and electronics have become a prominent part of our everyday lives. Everyone is expected to be on social media and when “unplugging” I challenge the status quo. My work is comprised of a collage for the background of the photo and I created an original makeup as well as taking my own photo.

Additional UConn ECE Benefits

By Jessica Dunn

Discount Tickets

As part of the UConn ECE Community, Students, Instructors, Site Represen­tatives, Library Media Specialists, and Faculty Coordinators have access toattend select UConn athletic events and performances at the JorgensenCenter for the Performing Arts at discounted rates! UConn Early CollegeExperience has partnered with UConn Athletics to offer YOU the opportuni­ty to be in the stands and show your Husky pride with your friends andfamily. We have also partnered with Jorgensen who offers UConn EarlyCollege Experience Students and high school partners, with a valid UConn NetID, FREE tickets to a selection of their annual performances.
Available athletic event tickets and Jorgensen performance offers are an­nounced throughout the academic year to the UConn ECE Community. Take advantage of these great offers and opportunities to immerse yourself in the UConn culture. Hundreds of UConn ECE partners did this year! You may not be in Storrs, Avery Point, Hartford, Stamford, or Waterbury, but you are a part of UConn wherever you are. Bring your class, your friends, or your family to a game or a show! This is just one of the many benefits of being part of the UConn ECE family, and we hope to see you on campus.
Find your tickets here:
Don’t forget, show your Husky Pride and tag us in your photos from the games and shows you attend!
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UConn Recreation Center Access – just for our partners

UConn ECE Instructors, Site Representatives, and Library Media Specialists are eligible foraffiliate membership to the UConn Recreation Center. UConn ECE administrative partners must provide a UConn One Card for purchase of membership.


Professional Development and New Instructor Orientation


By Stefanie Malinoski

Professional Development Workshops

UConn Early College Experience Faculty Coordinators offer annual professional devel­opment workshops for their Instructors. This spring, UConn ECE hosted twenty-nine different professional development workshops for certified Instructors. Many of these events occurred in person on the Storrs and Hartford campuses and others were held in a virtual capacity. Some highlights are below. Please be sure to check out the UConn ECE Professional Development Blog on the ECE website for details and pictures from our events.
Animal Science

Our certified Animal Science Instructors along with Faculty Coordinators Dr. Jenifer Nadeu and Dr. Amy Safran took a tour of UConn’s animal facilities including the voluntary milking system, and Molly Riser, UConn ANSC PhD student, provided an overview of the domestication and breeding of dogs.

Along with ECE Faculty Coordinator, Dr. Alexia Smith, certified UCo­nn ECE Anthropology Instructors met for a virtual workshop where they focused on practical strategies for teaching anthropology today and recent changes within the field. Hot topics such as participation agreements, accessibility issues, and engagement modalities were the main topics of discussion. UConn’s Dr. Noga Shemer served as a guest facilitator for the workshop. Dr. Shemer is an Assistant Professor-in-Res­idence of Anthropology at UConn, where she also serves as an Affiliate faculty member of El Instituto (Institute of Latina/o, Caribbean, and Latin American Studies) and as an Assistant Director of Faculty Development at the Center for Excellence in Teaching and Learning. As a cultural anthropol­ogist with many years teaching experience, she provides workshops across the university focusing on diversity, equity, and inclusion in the classroom and has pub­lished journal articles focusing on her use of person-centered ethnographies to build empathy.

UConn ECE Faculty Coordinator for Art, Prof. Cora Lynn Deibler, met with UConn ECE Art Instructors for their virtual professional development session and invited Dr. James J. Hughes to speak with the group about artificial intelligence (AI) in the art world. Dr. Hughes is an American sociologist and bioethicist. He serves as the Executive Director of the Institute for Ethics and Emerging Technologies and as Associate Provost at UMass Boston. He writes and speaks often on topics of bioethics, technology, and Buddhism. The group listened to Dr. Hughes’ presentation and engaged in a lively conversation discussing the rise of tech­nological art-generating tools that use artificial intelligence. While students are interested in new AI tools, established artists are skeptical – even fearful. The group discussed strategies for talking about, contextualizing, and using or discouraging use of AI artmaking in our classrooms.

Dr. Thomas Abbott, Associate Professor In-Resi­dence and ECE Faculty Coordinator for Biology, met with a group of fifty Instructors for an on-campus workshop. The Instructors engaged in hands on laboratory experience dealing with Maltose Transport Assays with Dr. Chris Malinoski, Assistant Professor in Resi­dence and Rebecca Newcomer, Laborato­ry Manager for UCo­nn’s undergraduate Biology 1000 courses.
Educational Psychology

Dr. Joe Madaus invited author of “The Lottery”, Patricia Wood, to speak with our group of certified Special Education Instructors. Patricia shared her personal experiences with the group in a lively virtual discussion all the way from Hawaii!

Faculty Coordinators for Spanish Dr. Guillermo Nanclares and Dr. Eduardo Urios-Aparisi invited special guest Dr. Maria Lourdes Casas to speak to a group of 40 UConn ECE certified Spanish Instruc­tors. Dr. Casas is a professor in the World Languag­es, Literatures, and Cultures Department at Central Connecticut State University.

UConn Early College Experience New Instructor Orientation

New Instructor Orientation occurred in May on the Storrs campus for over 150 newly certified ECE Instructors. Returning to an in-person event for the first time since 2019 the morning was spent covering all things Early College Experi­ence. Topics includ­ed: student regis­tration, instructor responsibilities and resources, creating a UConn ECE com­munity, data highlights, enrichment programs, and Pre-College Summer. After some Q&A and lunch as a group, teachers met with their ECE Faculty Coordinators for discipline-specific orientation sessions.
Instructors shared their feedback after orientation and some mentioned that they were happy to hear that UConn ECE is aware of the struggles teachers may face convincing their school boards that run­ning multiple UConn course offerings is beneficial to their students and faculty. They are now aware that the ECE program staff is willing and able to help teachers work with their schools to promote and “package” their UConn courses (with meetings, pro­motional materials, etc.). Most Instructors reported they enjoyed learning about how to create a UConn ECE community in their classrooms and schools and were grateful to have the opportunity to participate in orientation in person to meet with their discipline specific UConn Faculty Coordinator.