All HDFS Alumni Spotlights
My name is Jackie Maietta and I am an alum of the 2011 Family Studies Class. After graduation, I moved back to CT where I worked for Bright Horizons as an infant teacher. I was fortunate enough to be hired as the core group of teachers to open Bright Horizon's ESPN KidsCenter in Bristol, CT which is a school for faculty and staff of ESPN to send their children to (kind of like our CSDC). After only 6 months as an infant teacher, I was appointed to the Lead Infant teacher which was an honor and I think spoke to my knowledge and understanding of child development that was honed during my time in the FS department at UNH.
The following year (2012), there was a job opening at the CSDC. I did my work-study at the CSDC during my time at UNH in addition to my teaching internships for 635, 709 and my p-3 student teaching. I was ecstatic when I was informed that I got an interview and head-over-heels when I was offered a job in the Preschool 1 classroom. I am so excited to be "home" at UNH since it is where I found my passion for teaching, was introduced to the approach practiced in Reggio Emilia, Italy, and where I learned about freedom of movement, Magda Gerber and her work with infants.
Meghann Hickey is an alumni from Abington, MA and graduated with the class of 2014 majoring in Human Development and Family Studies.
I love how much real-world classroom time the UNH HDFS program has. Teaching, especially with young children, cannot fully be learned from a textbook. It takes real-life classroom time to apply the theories and procedures learned in lectures. I also love how the professors in the department have strong in-field experience so students learn current and applicable information from extremely knowledgeable sources.
I would recommend UNH to a potential student because of how strongly prepared I am for life after college. I feel confident in running my own classroom in the immediate future directly from my work in the HDFS Department. Not only is the department itself great, but there are so many opportunities offered, from internships to the P-3 program, where students gain additional preparation for the “real-world.” Working at the Child Study and Development Center was a unique opportunity at UNH, and I learned so much about children and becoming a great teacher; by the end of the HDFS program the CSDC feels like home. Overall, UNH has a great staff of professors and an amazing community spirit that makes everyone proud to be a Wildcat.
Heather Ridge is an alumna from the Class of 2009 who was a double major in Human Development and Family Studies and International Affairs. She minored in Spanish and Women's Studies.
Heather writes, "After I graduated from UNH, I became a mentor at a therapeutic boarding school for girls ages 10-14 in North Carolina. I thoroughly enjoyed this new and eye-opening experience, which inspired me to learn more about wilderness therapy and work as a wilderness therapy field guide. After working as a field guide, I had the opportunity to work as an Early Head Start (EHS) teacher. These experiences inspired me to pursue a graduate degree in Mental Health Counseling. I am currently attending Western Carolina University in Cullowhee, NC. After graduation in 2016, I hope to complete the requirements to become an LPC (Licensed Professional Counselor). I thank my Family Studies and International Affairs background for inspiring me to continue in the helping professions and pursue a master's in counseling."
Keryn Bernard-Kriegl is a UNH alumna several times over. A 1989 graduate of the UNH Leisure Management and Tourism program, Keryn received her M.S. in Family Studies in 1993. She also completed a certificate in supervisory skills at UNH.
After completing her master's degree, Keryn worked at Odyssey House, taught at an alternative high school, and served as family services director at Families First in Portsmouth for 8 years before moving into her current position as executive director of the New Hampshire Children's Trust, Inc.
She writes, "Along with my co-workers, I lead the state’s drive to eliminate child abuse and neglect. I also serve on the Prevent Child Abuse America Chapter Network Executive Council and am a graduate of Leadership New Hampshire class of 2014."
- Read about Laura Andrew, an alum of the UNH Human Development and Family Studies Graduate Program in Child Advocacy and Family Policy.
- Read about Kate Richey, a UNH Human Development and Family Studies alum who’s teaching kindergarten in Lisbon, NH.
- Read about M.-A. Lucas, a UNH Human Development and Family Studies graduate who founded the US Army’s Child and Youth Programs.
- Read about Jennifer Way, a Human Development and Family Studies major in the Child Development specialization who graduated in 2007, who recently completed a teaching assignment in Tanzania.
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