ESU Announces Winter 2017 Graduate Student Speaker
Melissa Dowches, a master’s degree candidate from Saylorsburg, Pa., will be the graduate student speaker for East Stroudsburg University’s winter commencement ceremony on Saturday, December 16, at 9:45 a.m. in Koehler Fieldhouse.
Currently employed by the Bethlehem Area School District, Dowches is a grade 5 classroom teacher at Spring Garden Elementary School. Prior to joining Spring Garden Elementary in 2014, she was a grade 4 classroom teacher at Marumsco Hills Elementary School in Prince William County, Va., and the head teacher at The Growing Place Child Care Center in Kresgeville, Pa. Dowches graduated from Kutztown University in 2009 with a Bachelor of Science in education.
Dowches entered the Master of Education degree program in reading in 2013. “Through this program I have been afforded many opportunities,” she said. “But, perhaps the most important benefit of my participation in this program has been gradually developing and perfecting my craft with integrity and precision under the guidance of distinguished faculty.”
With a demonstrated knowledge of effective planning and teaching, as well as the ability to use creativity, Dowches makes her lessons engaging, fun, and meaningful. The lesson plans she wrote were used as models for other students in her program.
Dowches completed the entire M.Ed. online, yet has continually built strong relationships with other graduate students. Mary Beth Allen, Ed.D., professor of reading, said, “For every project, discussion, and collaboration, Melissa has epitomized the ideal for a graduate student. She used every class experience to help her refine, broaden, and improve her own practice and has shared that knowledge with classmates and with her colleagues at school.”