In the video above, see how CESS Alumni Briana Martin, Chris Magistrale, Jamilah Vogel, and Song Nguyen are making an impact in their communities.
The quality of our students' preparation is widely recognized and highly valued. CESS graduates are uniquely positioned for immediate success in meaningful careers that make a real difference in the world. Their impact helps to fulfill our mission to promote a more humane and just society that maximizes human potential and the quality of life for all individuals, families, and communities locally, nationally and globally.
Success After Graduation: Celebrating the CESS Class of 2023
"It’s the community," says Claire Lennon '23. "I have never felt alone in any of my endeavors. Faculty care so much and are always there for us. I made lifelong friendships through CESS, the Honors College, club sports, and the campus tour guide program. I am so lucky to be part of the UVM family, and I know that won’t change after graduation.” See what success looks like for our CESS Class of 2023 graduates.
“I am committed to paying it forward by empowering others in my community by uplifting one another," says Daniel Fairley G'16, who is among the first cohort of 100 emerging changemakers chosen to participate in the Obama Foundation’s Leaders USA program. "This remarkable honor is not just a personal triumph," said Fairley, who serves as the youth opportunity coordinator for the City of Charlottesville in Virginia. "It symbolizes the collective efforts of the village and community that nurtured and supported me throughout my time as a Catamount."
"I want to make a positive impact on their lives," says Jake Hession '22 about the students he works with as a special educator at Milton High School where he was hired after graduation. See how Jake's educational journey at UVM prepared him to become an inclusive educator for all students.
"The idea of helping to create a violence-free world is really the thing that inspires me on a day-to-day basis," says social work alumna Sarah Robinson G'12, who serves as the Deputy Director of Vermont Network Against Domestic and Sexual Violence. Sarah received UVM's 2022 Young Alumni Award honoring her outstanding leadership and community impact.
"Their curiosity and excitement for life is infectious, and I find great joy in watching their personalities unfold and their knowledge expand,” says Maia Hendrickson '21 about her role as an early childhood educator at Franklin West Supervisory Union in Georgia, Vermont.
UVM Higher Education and Student Affairs (HESA) alum Robert Kelly G'96 made history as the first African American president of the Univerity of Portland. “I come to this position with great prayer and discernment," he said of the distinction, "and I don’t take this responsibility lightly.”
"I want to live in a world where students see themselves in the curriculum and the books they're reading," says Monica Desrochers '11, who serves as the recovery coordinator for equity and inclusion in the Addison Northwest School District. For her outstanding leadership in education, Monica earned a doctoral scholarship from UVM while pursuing her Ed.D. in Educational Leadership and Policy Studies.
After earning her B.S. in Human Development and Family Science (HDFS) in 2019, Claire Crowley went on to earn her M.S. in Counseling Psychology. Now she enjoys her work as research associate at Carnevale Associates, LLC, a business that provides strategic consulting in the behavioral health and criminal justice sectors.
“I still write and publish with my mentor and former HDFS professor, Dr. Nicole Conroy,” Claire explains. “Our most recent publication came out earlier this year on the conceptual misrepresentations and methodological misapplications of Johnson's typology of IPV (Intimate Partner Violence). Dr. Conroy is the reason I pursued research and a graduate degree in the first place. She opened so many doors for me at UVM and beyond.”
A first-generation college student who earned her Bachelor of Social Work (BSW) at UVM, Briana Martin '11 developed greater interest in mental health and received her Master of Social (MSW) through a Fulbright research grant in Montreal, Quebec. She now serves as the assistant director of advising and diversity at NYU Liberal Studies.
"Allowing students to embrace change, become frustrated, and struggle to articulate what they are going through is an awe-inspiring experience." See how the 2019 Vermont Teacher of the Year Tom Payeur is working to address educational inequities in his culturally diverse classroom at Winooski High School.
“UVM changed my trajectory as a person because I got the opportunity to work with a lot of people who really cared about humanity," says Pahara Senior Vice President Shawna Wells '04. She has spent her career changing the way we educate and support our children. As an executive coach and advisor to senior leaders working towards ending educational and societal inequities, she believes everyone has the opportunity to disrupt the status-quo.
Learn about Shawna's career trajectory as a leader to improve schools and opportunities around the country through her previous work with as a senior partner and head of the educational equity team at The Management Center.
Where are they now?
CESS alumni are making a difference near and far. Here are just a few of them:
- Alden Ducharme '22, Middle School Teacher, Birches School
- Ama Sika '21, ABA Behavioral Specialist, Kids First
- Kia'Rae Hanron '20, Arts Learning Director, Clemmons Family Farm
- Robyn Newton ‘95, 2023 Vermont Teacher of the Year, Vergennes Union Elementary School
- Ben Lovelette '20, Math Teacher, St. Albans City School
- Gabriella Battaglia '19, Public Health Data and Evaluation Manager, Texas Health and Human Services
- Matt Bristol '13, 2023 SHAPE America National Teacher of the Year, Essex Middle School
- Emma Staff '21, Policy Director, Mayor’s Office of Women’s Advancement, Boston
- Samantha Serrantonio '20, Enrichment Coordinator, Essex Junction Recreation and Parks
- Amanda Van Vranken G'23, Assistant Director for External Partnerships, University of Vermont
- Mark Olofson G'17, Director of Educator Data, Research, and Strategy at Texas Education Agency
- Dan French G'14, Chief Operating Officer, Council of Chief State School Officers
- Winny Looby G'13, G'17, Disability Studies Project Coordinator, UVM Center on Disability and Community Inclusion
- Wanda Heading-Grant, G'03, Vice Provost for Diversity, Equity and Inclusion & Chief Diversity Officer at Carnegie Mellon University
- Leo Lambert G'78, President Emeritus, Elon University