Alumni Feature

Alum Enjoys Surprise Virtual Wedding with Cast of “The Office”

June 8, 2020
Alumni Feature

“Webster's dictionary defines ‘wedding’ as ‘the fusing of two metals with a hot torch.’”

While this definition given by Michael Scott on the popular television show “The Office” mixes up the words “wedding” and “welding,” University of Pittsburgh School of Education alumnus John Lush (MAT ’05) and his new bride, Susan Hedrick, proved that the traditional definition of a...

Alum Supports First-Generation and Lower-Income College Students

May 18, 2020
Alumni Feature

Hatef Alavi is the first in his family to attend college. He earned a doctorate in educational leadership and is an administrator at the University of Pennsylvania’s Penn First Plus program. His job allows him to support talented and resilient students who face significant barriers to a college education, like lower-income students and other first-generation students like him. 

Alumna Receives Award for Top Research Paper in Thailand

November 7, 2019
Alumni Feature

Jirada Wudthayagorn credits her professional success in Thailand to her PhD program in foreign language education at the School of Education at the University of Pittsburgh. She says that her doctoral studies at Pitt prepared her to work as an innovator in education in her country in the twenty-first century. 

Alum Works with CDC to Protect Workers during Pandemic

April 9, 2020
Alumni Feature

As the University of Pittsburgh School of Education adapts to the challenges of the COVID-19 pandemic, one alumnus is working with the U.S. Centers for Disease Control (CDC) during the crisis. 

Tyler Quinn, a 2015 alumnus of the school’s Exercise Physiology master’s program and current Exercise Physiology PhD candidate, supports the CDC’s efforts to recommend personal...

Alumna Named to 2019 New Pittsburgh Courier Women of Excellence

January 15, 2020
Alumni Feature

Ruthie A. Rea, a two-time graduate of the University of Pittsburgh School of Education, was named a winner of the 2019 New Pittsburgh Courier Women of Excellence Award. The award is given each year to 50 African American women in the Greater Pittsburgh area who are making a considerable impact in the community.

Rea is a principal at Arsenal PreK-5, a Pittsburgh public school in heart...

Alumnus Receives Sheth International Award for Founding Uganda School

December 6, 2019
Alumni Feature

At the small school run by Silver Francis Oonyu in rural Opucet, Uganda, the sound of bells jingling accompany the shouts and laughter of children playing spirited games of soccer in the dirt field. 

The bells are attached to the ball and help the students, who are blind, to find the ball. Sighted helpers run beside the students to help guide them. The activity is fun. It’s also...

Alumna Safiyyah Scott Awarded Prestigious Fulbright Scholar Award

November 11, 2019
Alumni Feature

Eight years ago, before she was an alumna of Pitt Education, Safiyyah Scott was living in Saudi Arabia to teach English. A random act of kindness that happened there changed her life and inspired her to become a Fulbright Scholar. 

Due to a mix-up with a housing stipend for her family, Scott suddenly found herself without a place to stay. Luckily, Scott connected with a woman named...

Five Questions with Alumna Yidan Wang of the World Bank Group

October 23, 2019
Alumni Feature

Yidan Wang is a senior education specialist with the World Bank Group.  She serves on the Board of Visitors of the Pitt School of Education and is an alumna of the School of Education at the University of Pittsburgh.

To commemorate the 2019 United Nations Day on October 24, 2019, Pitt Education caught up with Wang for a brief interview. The interview has been slightly edited...

Alumna Kristin Shymoniak Receives The School Superintendents Association (AASA) and Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation Women in School Leadership Award

August 16, 2019
Alumni Feature

Alumna Kristin Shymoniak, a graduate in the MEd early intervention program and the special education certification program, has received The School Superintendents Association (AASA) and Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation Women in School Leadership Award. She is the lead special education teacher at Bancroft Elementary School in Alexandria, Va. Shymoniak, who was been teaching around seven...