Monthly Archives: February 2015

Sara Stecewicz: From Goodwin Student to Napa Valley Lab Tech

Sara Stecewicz, Goodwin College Environmental Studies graduate, now lives in sunny California working as a lab technician at Rutherford Hill Winery in Napa Valley. The winery was founded in 1972 and takes advantage of its geographic setting to produce a high quality selection of wines with a focus on merlot.

Stecewicz’s interest in natural sciences and water systems originally inspired her to pursue Environmental Studies at Goodwin. After graduation, she managed to combine her interest in the environment with her passion for wine and create a uniquely successful career. She has worked in a variety of positions in wineries, from cellar work to vineyard management. In her current position, she uses her experience and knowledge of chemistry and microbiology to measure wine for levels of acid and sulfur.

“I love that I get to work with wine and live in a beautiful place. It feels like I’m in a chemistry lab all day,” she noted.

She credits Goodwin’s program for preparing her for a successful career in the field through a hands-on approach to learning and an emphasis on using education to join the workforce. “I feel that Goodwin was really focused on getting me started in a career.”

Stecewicz is very interested in environmental and urban planning and sees herself continuing her contribution to the environment for years to come.

By: Hannah Stacy

Rosanna Getty: Creating a Sustainable Environment


Rosanna Getty, Environmental Studies student at Goodwin College and self-proclaimed “nature girl,” is an enthusiastic advocate for environmental sustainability.

Having worked as a bartender for 10 years, Getty decided to come to Goodwin to pursue a degree in a field she is passionate about: environmental stewardship. She believes it’s important for people to realize that our population is growing and resources are finite.

Getty feels that being able to do field work directly on the Connecticut River has been a huge advantage to her progress. Her core classes have allowed her to learn about wildlife, biology, ecology, chemistry, and other sciences. “Everything is coming together nicely,” she said. “I love what I’m learning and where I’m learning. It’s not just out of a book.”

Her professors have motivated her to do more and learn more. “The faculty members at Goodwin are worldly, charismatic, and have so many connections,” Getty explained.

Even the campus itself is a source of inspiration for her studies and a great example of sustainability. In developing and remediating the riverfront property, Goodwin was awarded multiple EPA Brownfield grants to convert contaminated industrial properties into the site for the new college campus. “It all connects. Comparing photos of the brownfields to what the campus looks like now is amazing,” Getty stated.

Getty hopes to continue her education, pursue her master’s in Environmental Studies, and become an environmental consultant.

By: Hannah Stacy

Ashley Cichowicz: “You Can Do It And Goodwin Can Help You”

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Ashley Cichowicz had been employed at a preschool in Manchester, Connecticut, but when it closed due to budget cuts, she found herself working at a fast food restaurant and unable to meet her bills.

Now, Cichowicz is a student in the Goodwin College Child Study program, with a promising future ahead. With an internship already lined up at Goodwin’s Early Childhood Magnet School, she is excited to once again work in the field she loves.

Her outlook on education aligns closely with the Early Childhood Magnet School’s philosophy. “I want children to be creative,” Cichowicz said, “and I want them to be able to choose how they learn.”

By observing careers at a number of educational settings and by having her professors share their own experiences with her, she hopes to expose herself to the wide variety of options she will be able to pursue with this degree. “Not only can you teach, but you can also become a director, a family engagement coordinator, a reading specialist, and so much more,” she explained.

An East Hartford native with a 7-year-old daughter to care for, Cichowicz appreciates the convenience of the magnet school’s location and class times. “My daughter and I do our homework together. I want to be a good example for her and show her that, even if something unfortunate happens in your life, you can pick yourself up.”

Her long-term goal is to advocate for a more open style of teaching by conducting and providing research.

To those who encounter their own challenges along the path to a fulfilling career, Cichowicz advises, “There are a lot of people out there — like I was — who can’t afford to pay their bills and are working at fast food restaurants or similar jobs. Don’t think you can’t do it. You can — and Goodwin can help.”

By: Hannah Stacy


New ImageGoodwin College has announced its spring 2015 Adult Continuing Education (ACE) offerings. The classes — free of charge to seniors 55 and older — are offered in conjunction with the East Hartford South End Senior Center. All courses are presented in two-part sessions at the Goodwin campus, One Riverside Drive, East Hartford and the Senior Center, 70 Canterbury Street, East Hartford. Introduction to Spanish: Part 1 on Friday, March 13, 5 to 7 p.m. at the Senior Center and Part 2 on Saturday, March 14, 9 to 11 a.m. at Goodwin College. Introduction to Computers: Part 1 on Friday, April 10, 5 to 7 p.m. at the Senior Center and Part 2 on Saturday, April 11, 9 to 11 a.m. at Goodwin College. Personal Safety: Part 1 on Friday, May 8, 5 to 7 p.m. at the Senior Center and Part 2 on Saturday, May 9, 9 to 11 a.m. at Goodwin College. Interested participants must register for classes by contacting ACE Program Coordinator Claude Mayo at 860-913-2051 or cmayo@goodwin.eduDownload flyer.






Connecticut River Academy Hosts Statewide Envirothon Student Aquatics Workshop

Approximately 140 students and 30 advisors from around the state attended the Connecticut Envirothon Aquatics Workshop hosted at the Connecticut River Academy (CTRA) at Goodwin College on January 17, one of several workshops in anticipation of the statewide student competition later this year. The impressive turnout at the Aquatics Workshop was well received by both attendees and hosts.

“This is great,” Envirothon Steering Committee Chair Jeff Folger said. “We’ve had statewide competitions that weren’t this well attended.”

The aquatics workshop was held at CTRA after Bruce Morton, Goodwin College’s Environmental Studies Program Director, reached out to the organization to suggest the environmentally-themed magnet school’s facilities as a potential location for the event.

“The Connecticut River Academy is amazing,” Envirothon Aquatics Chair Kim Bradley said. “The facilities and personnel were incredible.” With large science lab spaces and direct access to the Connecticut River, CTRA offered the perfect environment for the workshop. The aquatics workshop had previously been held at the main Goodwin College building, Bradley said.

The Connecticut Envirothon is a natural resource-based education program started in 1992 by the state’s Soil and Water Conservation Districts, which brings together teams of high school students to participate in workshops related to the environment. On May 6, the teams will meet for an all-day field competition and oral presentation to present before a panel of experts. The winning team will have a chance to compete at the North American Envirothon in the summer.

Goodwin’s Human Services “Dynamic Duo”

untitledGoodwin College’s Human Services program provides students with a wide range of opportunities to make a positive impact and to improve the quality of life for others — and that’s exactly what Veronica Vioude and Yamilette Rosado are learning to do, even before they graduate. Collectively, Vioude and Rosado are often referred to as the “dynamic duo” by their professors and classmates.

Vioude came to Goodwin straight from Manchester High School and chose to enroll in the Human Services program because she genuinely enjoys helping people and wants to make a difference on a large scale. She recognizes how much extra time the Goodwin faculty spends encouraging students and designing curricula that support all learning types.

Rosado is a transfer student and appreciates how different the atmosphere is at Goodwin compared to what she had seen elsewhere. “The difference can be seen in the professors, the surroundings, the warm and professional environment, and how students choose to pursue their education,” she explains. “It’s obvious that this school is centered on the students.”

Both Vioude and Rosado credit the Goodwin faculty on changing their lives. “The faculty members really want the students to succeed, and that makes such a difference. They’ve given us the knowledge and tools to move ahead,” Rosado notes.

Both students say that their ultimate goal is to establish an organization in Connecticut aimed at combatting human trafficking. “It’s our dream. We want people to have knowledge, stability, and a safe place to go,” Vioude states.

In their Human Services classes, Vioude and Rosado have learned different ways to facilitate therapy through group counseling. “It’s not only informative, but it’s therapeutic as well. It’s a safe place for participants to share what they’re feeling and have their voices heard,” Vioude notes.

“We’ve been empowered at Goodwin, and in turn we hope to empower others,” adds Rosado.

They will be graduating this spring and have both been accepted into the School of Social Work MSW program at the University of Connecticut.