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Journey into Education and Teaching (JET)

A program for paraprofessionals to earn a Bachelor's degree and teacher licensure in elementary education and moderate disabilities

JET is accepting applications: apply today!

JET BCC Student Awarded Scholarship

Laura Kubik  Congratulations to Laura Kubik of BCC Cohort 4 for winning the Joan V. Winiarski and Teresa W. Merrill Scholarship! Kubik was given the award, which will contribute $1,000 to her academic pursuits, at a ceremony held on October 4th at the Commonwealth College Center.

The scholarship is granted to students enrolled at Bristol Community College who demonstrate scholastic merit and financial need and who are pursuing a course of study in the fields of education or health care. It was established in October 2010 by Teresa Merrill in honor of her late sister Joan Winiarski, who taught in the Fall River school system for 40 years.

First JET baby debuts at summer training session

We're pleased to introduce the first baby born to a JET student since the start of the JET Program in Oct 2007. Congratulations to Patrick Townson, UMD Cohort 2, on the birth of his first child, Luisa!

Patrick showed of Luisa to his fellow JET cohort members at a training session for completing the LAR eportfolio, a requirment for their undergraduate degrees. Patrick and several other JET students will be receiving their Bachelor of Arts degrees in Liberal Arts at the end of August.

JET BCC cohort members gets hands-on for science

In early August students from JET BCC cohorts 3, 4, and 5 took a field trip to the New Bedford Ocean Explorium as part of a BCC course that introduces non-science majors to the physical sciences. The students spent a fun and instructive day applying learnings from throughout the course, which teaches them about topics in chemistry, physics, geology, and astronomy.

JET Academic Program Director Jen Riley appointed Interim Dean of the College of Arts and Sciences at UMass Dartmouth

Congratulations to UMass English Professor Jen Riley on being appointed Interim Dean of the College of Arts and Sciences. Jen has been an integral part of the JET program since it began—she designed the UMass Dartmouth Liberal Arts undergraduate major, which all JET participants take, and she serves as both a course instructor and mentor to her JET students.

All of us at JET are excited for Jen and look forward to continuing to work with her.

Twenty-one JET students graduate with honors at May 2012 graduation

This year’s group of 21 JET graduates had many reasons to celebrate as they participated in UMD’s May undergraduate graduation ceremony. All 21 earned their well-deserved Bachelor of Arts Degrees in Liberal Arts, and all graduated with honors.

Congratulations to all of our hard-working graduates! Sharon Babb, Tricia Cabral, Elizabeth Dmitruk, Elizabeth Fisher, Brenda Francisco, Lisa Gemaly, Eleanor Hendricks, Karen LePage, Stacy Martin, Joyce Melker, Karen Mello, Fernando Noia, Lisa O’Brien, Kathleen Pimentel, Christine Rodrigues, Lisa Romanowicz, Patrick Townson, Kelly Travis, Suzanne Welch, Shannon Whitehead, and Jessica Zitano-Pimental.

Four JET students earn their Master of Arts in Teaching (MAT)

Liane Frechette became the first JET student to earn her Masters of Arts in Teaching (MAT) degree in May 2011. She has been endorsed for her Elementary (1-6) Initial Teaching License and will seek a teaching job this fall. Recent JET graduates Sharon Babb, Tricia Cabral, and Karen LePage also completed their MAT degree this May and have been endorsed for their Elementary (1-6) Initial Teaching License.  They are also seeking full time teaching positions in JET’s high need school district partners of Fall River and New Bedford.   

JET Cohort 5 begin at UMass Dartmouth and Bristol Community College Fall 2012

JET will be welcoming a 5th Cohort both at UMD and BCC.  At UMD there are of nine students starting classes this fall.  Eight of the students are transferring from the JET program at Bristol Community College. This is the largest group yet to transfer at one time in the JET program.  At BCC, five students will be starting the JET Program this fall.

JET graduate Joyce Melker featured in The Advocate

Recent JET graduate Joyce Melker chronicled her experiences as a new teacher in the December 2011 edition of The Advocate, a publication of the Massachusetts chapter of the American Federation of Teachers.

Read Joyce's story, "Diary of a New Teacher," on page 4 of The Advocate December 2011 (pdf).



 JET hosts 2009 National Teacher of the Year

On May 20, 2010, JET hosted keynote speaker Anthony Mullen, the 2009 National Teacher of the year in a special event at Woodland Commons. Mullen shared stories about receiving his award from President Obama at the White House last year, and related his experiences changing careers, from policework to teaching. His messages resonated with the 150+ in the crowd, many of whom were career changing teachers themselves.

See also this blog post written by Shonna McGrail, as well as this article that ran in the New Bedford Standard-Times.

JET's award-winning staff

Dr. Theresa Romanovitch, Dean of the BCC New Bedford campus and JET partner, has received BCC's Alumna of the Year award.

Joanne Gracia, JET Coordinator at BCC, has won BCC's "Sceptre and Scroll" Award, which is awarded to members of the college community who consistently provide exceptional college-wide service and/or leadership.

Jenna Burns, JET assistant at BCC, has been awarded the Silver Shield award, which is awarded to members of the BCC community who have made significant contributions to the college. Jenna also recently earned an MA in Educational Leadership from Bridgewater State College.

JET congratulates Terri, Joanne, and Jenna for their well deserved accolades.

JET makes the news

The Massachusetts chapter of the American Federation of Teachers has featured the JET program in a front-page article in the Advocate September 2009  (pdf).

JET has also been featured in the
Fall River Herald-News and the
New Bedford Standard-Times.







UMass Dartmouth cohort with Liberal Arts Program Director Jen Riley (far left, front) and JET Director Pam Herrup (far right, back row)

BCC cohort in a science class

UMass Dartmouth's Journey into Education and Teaching (JET) program is funded by a Transition to Teaching grant from the United States Department of Education and is overseen by Project Director Karen O'Connor.

Contact Pamela Herrup, Program Director, at 774-929-3032 or pherrup@umassd.edu.