The partnership between the University of Hartford and Hartford Public Schools took on a new dimension during Teacher Appreciation Week when Connecticut Milken Educator, Suzi D'Annolfo (1995) presented Connecticut's newest Milken Educator Recipient, Tameka Knight (2013), with the prestigious Milken Educator pin on May 9. The Milken Family Foundation annually recognizes top educators who have been nominated in each state for their effective teaching, leadership, and impact on student learning. Tameka Knight, a fifth grade teacher at the Annie Fisher STEM School, was surprised earlier this year by Jane Foley, senior vice president of the Milken Family Foundation, with the announcement of her selection as Connecticut's recipient and with a gift of $25,000.
Suzi D'Annolfo, who was the principal of Litchfield High School when she received the award in 1995 and is currently an assistant professor and coordinator of school partnerships in the College of Education, Nursing and Health Professions, coordinated the luncheon and recognition ceremony that also showcased the partnership between the University and the Hartford Public Schools. Through meaningful clinical and field experiences, teacher-candidates at the University of Hartford work closely with the teachers and students at the Annie Fisher STEM Magnet School located on the periphery of the campus. As part of the Institute for Translational Research, professors at the University collaborate with practitioners and the leadership team at Annie Fisher STEM to inform the teaching and learning practices in preparing the next generation of teachers. This public school-higher education partnership further supports educational reform and the work of the Milken Family Foundation to improve teaching and learning through the Milken Educator Network.
Celebrating at the University of Hartford with Tameka are (left to right) Christina Kishimoto, superintendent of Hartford Public Schools; Alan Hadad, dean of magnet schools; Fred Sweitzer, associate provost and dean of graduate studies; Tameka Knight, Milken Award Winner; Suzi D'Annolfo, coordinator of school partnerships; Ralph O. Mueller, dean of the College of Education, Nursing and Health Professions; and Dianna Roberge-Wentzell, former assistant superintendent of the Hartford Public Schools and current chief academic officer of the Connecticut Department of Education.
Pictured below with her colleagues from Annie Fisher STEM Magnet with Superintendent Kishimoto are (left to right) Melony Brady, principal, Annie Fisher STEM Magnet; Melissa Dillon, teacher; Tameka Knight, Milken Award Recipient; Erin Wilson, teacher; and Christina Kishimoto, superintendent of Hartford Public Schools