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Summer professional development inspires educators 

More than three dozen educators spent the summer participating in professional development opportunities to expand their knowledge. 

We caught up with a few of them to hear how the experience has shaped their teaching this year. 

Headshot of Christin Bothe
Christin Bothe 
Teaching Life and Human Dignity Symposium

This reality that we are made in God’s very own image is at the heart of any theological pursuit. In my work with freshmen, I have the opportunity to not only help students cognitively understand this but to encourage them to be reflective of this as they go about building relationships at Gibbons. 

Attending the Teaching Life and Human Dignity Symposium gave me a chance to consult with theologians and educators from around the country to think about how to, practically, accomplish such a task. The symposium modeled, in its programming and implementation, how much life – abundant life – can be witnessed from a community that seeks to listen well, speak honestly, and ask good questions in the face of the world’s pain and beauty. I left reminded of why I love what I do, and why I love being Catholic.

Headshot of Mark Perry

Mark Perry 
AP Physics 1 Summer Institute

The AP Physics 1 Summer Institute at Taft Educational Center was informative, enjoyable, and immensely helpful. The leader of the institute, Dr. Jiang Yu covered a variety of topics, from syllabi and course structure to classroom strategies, student-centered learning, and group activities. Research shows a strong correlation between successful AP scores and problem-solving activities. 

The biggest takeaways from this institute have been a greater focus on group problem solving, conceptual discussions, scientific arguments, and laboratory investigations. My classes are molded around these four focal points. The classroom is an environment where creativity meets collaboration; it is my goal to make learning physics as fun as possible!

Headshot of Diane Ripollone
Diane Ripollone
Presenter at the National Science Teachers Conference 

I presented “Data and Storylines: The key to helping all students become STEM literate” with another teacher. A key takeaway for teachers included becoming familiar with technology, literacy, and adaptive learning for middle school and high school students. 

As a certified teacher for the American Meteorological Society, I also presented lessons on climate issues. We explored El Niño and La Nina’s relationship between ocean and atmosphere, which affects the warming of the ocean waters


Full list of summer professional development 

Conferences, Trainings/Courses, and Certifications

ISTE (Educational Technology) conference
Amy Ernenwein and Treve Lumsden  

AP Summer Institute Trainings
Susan Boehling, Corinne Buttner, Will Catterson, Mike Greene, and Mark Perry 

Project Lead the Way trainings
Mollie Fisher, Bill Healy, and Wendy Healy

National Science Teachers Association National Conference
Diane Ripollone

Teaching Life and Human Dignity Symposium
Mary Clare Mazzocchi, Mark Perry, Gary Meyerl, and Christin Bothe 

SEL and Yoga certification
Dance educators Kathy Schwering and Erica Seninsky

Foundational Questions of Teaching Theology course
Christin Bothe

NAIS School Leadership Institute
Paige Derouin 

Balancing Roles as Upper School Dean of Students from ISM
Jon Armfield 

Summer curriculum workdays 

A number of our educators also took part in summer curriculum workdays at Gibbons to plan and pace their courses for the upcoming year. 

Chemistry CP & Honors
Katie Kratzke, Malik MacFarlane, Angie Melcher, Anita Singh, and Joleen Smith

English 10 & 10 Honors 
J Mike Blake, Lori Giannaccini, Laura Ingerham, Mike Sheehan, and Debbie Taylor 

Government (CP, Honors, AP)
Jon Bruno, Jess Fisher, Gordon Galloway, and Treve Lumsden

David Crabbe, Whitney Crabbe, and Stewart Wall

Math I, II, & IV  
Genevieve Donahue, Mollie Fisher, and Ursula Karazin

Theology 9
Christin Bothe, Pat Gallagher, and Peggy Monti

AP US History 
Taylor Blanton, Jon Bruno, Gordon Galloway, and Jess Fisher

AP World History
Corinne Buttner, Stephen Ferguson, and Jess Fisher