Inspiring the next generation of educators

Portrait of Robert Siudzinski
February 2014—story by CCE staff writer Jenny Morgan, photo by Sandra Costello

Robert Siudzinski never meant to be an educator.

He was, in fact, adamantly opposed to the idea for most of his early life. “When you come from a family of 14 teachers, your Thanksgiving dinners are always about ‘my kids’ and new school policies.’ I wanted to be a cowboy or an astronaut or anything else.”

Yet there’s only so much one can do to stave off the inevitable. Almost immediately after graduating from college, he found himself being asked—repeatedly—to teach.

Meet the directors of Amherst’s newly imagined centers


October 2013Left to right: Danielle Hussey, director of the Women's and Gender Center, Molly Mead, director of the Center for Community Engagement, Angie Tissi-Gassoway, director of the Queer Resource Center, and Mariana Cruz, director of the Multicultural Resource Center. Photo by Eugene Lee '16, audio by Ruodi Duan '14 and Rama Hagos '15, text by CCE staff writer Jenny Morgan.

"Our number one goal," says Queer Resource Center director Angie Tissi-Gassoway, "is to have our community know who we are."

It's an exciting time for Tissi-Gassoway, the director of the newly imagined Queer Resource Center.

CCE audio documentarians Ruodi Duan '14 and Rama Hagos '15 sat down with Tissi-Gassoway to learn more about her vision for the center. They also spoke with Danielle Hussey, the director of the Women's and Gender Center, and Mariana Cruz, the director of the Multicultural Resource Center. The general consensus? It's an exciting time for all—and it's the first time each of these centers has had a full-time director at the helm.

The alchemy of a successful internship


July 2013—Julia
Alexander, the CCE's public service internship coordinator, is bringing reflection and social justice to the heart of the CCE's internship programs. Story by Jenny Morgan, photo by Eugene Lee '16.

As 127 students are immersed in internships across 15 states and 13 countries, public service internship coordinator Julia Alexander is eagerly waiting to learn how these internships might shape their future work or lead to unexpected discoveries. This summer—her first in the position—Alexander is coordinating two internship programs: the Civic Engagement Scholars and Pioneer Valley Citizen Summer.

Alexander knows firsthand that internships can lead to unexpected discoveries.

If Internships Be the Food of Love, Eat On