December 15, 2016
NEWBURGH, N.Y. -
Veronica Malloy of Millbrook, N.Y. (standing), president of
Mount Saint Mary College’s chapter of Kappa Delta Pi, teaches a
literacy course at Newburgh Ministry.
A Mount Saint Mary College literacy program for underprivileged
children, hosted by the Newburgh Ministry charitable organization,
was awarded a $15,000 technology grant from Warwick Savings
Foundation earlier this month.
The funding will be used to purchase tablets, laptops, software
programs, and other digital equipment for educating the young
students and their parents in the newly developed “Literacy for the
Community” segment of the program.
Teacher candidates will also use the new equipment to develop
skills for 21st century teaching. This purchase will aid the
college in its mission to produce skilled, well-rounded,
compassionate educators who will go on to serve schools in Orange
County, the Mid-Hudson region, and beyond.
The afterschool initiative is a collaborative venture between
the Mount’s Sigma Tau chapter of Kappa Delta Pi (KDP) – the
International Honor Society in Education – and Newburgh Ministry,
which has been serving disadvantaged members of the community for
more than three decades. The Ministry is headed by director Colin
The Mount’s KDP, which currently has 250 members, has earned
national recognition, having received the “Achieving Chapter
Excellence” award three consecutive times.
Developed by Mount teacher candidates over the summer interim,
the literacy program is run by nearly a dozen Mount volunteers who
have been working with children at the Ministry every Thursday
since the program’s inception. So far, it has been enjoyed by
dozens of at-risk elementary through middle school students.
The broad goals of the program are to improve children’s life
perspectives, develop their literacy skills, increase their
confidence in their abilities, and help them to believe that a
college education is possible for them.
KDP chapter president Veronica Malloy of Millbrook, N.Y. and
vice president Emily Meehan of Warwick, N.Y. spearheaded the
initiative. Mount education professors Sonya Abbye Taylor and
Ludmila Smirnova, co-counselors of the KDP chapter, assisted the
teacher candidates in designing the program.
Young participants and their families are scheduled to present
projects created during the weekly program at the college’s annual
literacy conference in April 2017. They will also get a tour of the
Mount in an effort promote interest in higher education and a
Taylor says that the program is beneficial for not only the
young students, but also for the Mount teacher candidates.
“This will help our students to be more effective
communicators,” she said. “And this is something where they
generate the curriculum and dictate exactly how they teach it, just
like they will one day in their own classrooms.”