Site Coordinators are trained educators who manage our School on Wheels of Massachusetts (SOWMA) tutoring sites. They help coordinate student/tutor matches, supervise tutoring sessions, and fill in as a tutor when needed. Each week they set up the learning resources before tutors arrive. Resources include student tutoring boxes, leveled reading book bins, educational games, curriculum binders, i-Pads and computers. Each week they make sure their students have the supplies and project materials they need for school and tutoring. They also send out the weekly tutoring schedules and provide direct hands-on support during tutoring sessions as well as support once tutoring is over by checking in with the tutors. Site Coordinators are the liaison amongst the program partners (shelter/school staff), children and families, tutors, and SOWMA staff.
Friends of the Homeless
Myra joined our staff as a Site Coordinator in 2010. She has a degree in biology from Queens College, and more recently obtained a Certificate in Childrens Book Illustration from Rhode Island School of Design. Myra has 15 years of experience working with underserved students in Brockton, tutoring at the elementary school level and serving as Team leader for the Greater Boston Jewish Coalition for Literacy program at the Kennedy School.
Friends of the Homeless Weymouth
Mary Kearney Briggs grew up in a big family near Wessagussett beach in North Weymouth, MA. Her parents came over from Ireland and started a new life here in America after WWII. As one of six children, she had to work to pay her way through school. It took some time, but she received degrees in Music Education, Counseling and Reading. Mary taught Middle and High School Chorus and worked at the Weymouth High Guidance office, volunteered for PTO, the Norwell VNA, the Friendship Home, South Shore Day Care and raised 2 wonderful sons. She enjoys working with children, cooking, gardening, music, dancing, art, decorating, and reading. She says that, “Children are precious, funny, and curious, and I love working with them.”
I am a graduate of Massasoit community college with a degree in early childhood education and administration. While still in school I was working in a daycare preschool. After a few years working with the little ones I moved on and joined the Easton public school system as a substitute teacher and landed a long term position in a separate classroom. From there I worked closely with children with disabilities and fell in love with it. As time went on a new program opened up and I went through training as a ABA (Applied Behavior Analyst). I fell in love with the profession. 3 1/2 years later, I still love my position and my kids with the company I am with.
Family Life Center
Becky joined SOWMA as the Site Coordinator for the Louison Center in the fall of 2015, and added the Family Life Center in January of 2016. Becky earned her BA in French and her MA in teaching from Clark University in Worcester. Upon finishing grad school, she moved to Paris, France to teach English. Her next move took her to Santa Fe, NM, where she worked as the administrative assistant and family services coordinator for a Head Start program on a Native American reservation for a year and a half. Eager to begin her teaching career, she moved to northern California where she taught high school French for five and a half years. She has recently made her way back to her home state of Massachusetts where she now teaches middle school French. Becky is passionate about working with youth of all ages and finds the opportunity to work for SOWMA very exciting and fulfilling.
Lisa Meisterman has joined SOWMA as the Site Coordinator at Bolton Place. She recently retired from Dover-Sherborn as a special educator who primarily worked in fifth grade. Her specialty is providing literacy instruction and she finds nothing more gratifying than getting students excited about reading and writing.
Lisa feels raising five daughters, who now range in age from 26 to 32, was her best training for becoming a teacher. She is proud that all five daughters are happy and successful professionals in the community. She been married to her husband for 35 years and they have recently become grandparents.
Her personal interests vary from reading and knitting to cycling and yoga. She spends much of her summer on the beach with friends and family.
Kelly has a BA in Latin American Studies from Union College. After getting her degree, she joined the Peace Corps and spent three years working on education related projects in Honduras. While in the Peace Corps, she discovered her love of learning and education so when she returned to the US, she returned to school to earn a Master’s Degree in Curriculum and Instruction from Wichita State University. She has been teaching Spanish for the last 16 years in the Old Rochester Regional School District on the beautiful South Coast. This area is where she spent her summers as a child and is now raising her twin daughters, who are juniors in high school. Prior to joining School on Wheels, she also taught English as a Second Language to adults in New Bedford through the Massachusetts Migrant Education Program. She is also active in her local Unitarian Universalist church serving as a youth leader. When she is not working, she likes running, reading and hanging out at the beach with her family and her dog.
Crescent Credit Union Learning Center
Lakia joined SOWMA during the 2012/2013 school year. She has an AS in Early Childhood Education from Bunker Hill Community College and a dual BS in Early Education and Care in Inclusive Settings/Adminstration and Supervision of Child Care Programs from the University of Massachusetts Boston. Outside of SOWMA, Lakia works with families experiencing homelessness and at-risk families. Lakia always knew that she wanted to work with families and/or children in the at-risk population. Prior to devoting her career to the Brockton Community, Lakia worked for more than 15 years with similar populations in Boston, MA. In her spare time, she enjoys traveling, being creative, cooking, shopping, giving back to the community and spending time with her teenage daughter. Lakia's passion is working with underserved families (especially the children!!!).