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NSF-TEU Program at Trinity College Provides Support for Teaching and Learning at the HMTCA Summer Science Academy


The teaching interns in the HMTCA summer science academy are all undergraduate students majoring in science and they are interested in a career in teaching. Funded by a grant from the National Science Foundation – Teaching Experiences for Undergraduates (NSF-TEU) program, these teaching interns come from colleges and universities across the country such as Trinity College, Vassar College, and Brown University, among many others. For example, one of the twelve NSF-TEU interns is current Trinity College student Jessica Duong, ’19 (fourth from left).

Because starting a teaching career is such a difficult task, the teaching interns have had mentors to observe and comment on their teaching and student learning. On July 2, mentor teachers from HMTCA met with the NSF-TEU interns to talk about highlights and challenges in teaching high school science. Trinity College alumna, Zuleyka Shaw ’06 (second from left), also joined the conversation as a former mentor and current HMTCA science teacher.

The HMTCA summer science academy and NSF-TEU programs are led by Trinity College Science Center Director Alison Draper and Dr. Kurt Love. Learn more about the program in a full-length story from the Trinity Reporter (Winter 2017), “Teaching to Teach”.

(Pictured above from left to right: Angela Kumm, HMTCA teacher and NSF-TEU mentor; Zuleyka Shaw, T ’06, HMTCA teacher and former mentor; NSF-TEU Interns: Madeline Crump, Jessica Duong T ’19, Thomas Schindelman, Oliver Yang, Alexa Castellana, Angela Zhang, Linda Zhang, Maria Salameh)

2018 HMTCA Summer Academies Begin at Trinity College


On June 19, the Hartford Magnet Trinity College Academy (HMTCA) summer writing and science academies kicked off. Over the last few weeks, HMTCA ninth and tenth grade students have participated in these academies as part of the unique Early College Program partnership with Trinity College.

On the first day of session one, HMTCA students in the 9th grade writing academy chatted with current Trinity students on the first day (pictured above). Tennyson O’Donnell, the Director of the Allan K. Smith Center for Writing and Rhetoric and HMTCA writing academy faculty, arranged the discussion in his classroom.

Over the next few weeks, HMTCA students in writing academy will practice and read different types of writing. Supported by a National Science Foundation – Teaching Experiences for Undergraduates grant, HMTCA students in the science academy will learn about environmental sustainability, including field work to test local water quality. Faculty and staff from both HMTCA and Trinity College design and teach in the summer academies.

Session one took place from June19-29 and session two will take place from July 2-13. Learn more about the partnership between HMTCA and Trinity College here.

HMTCA Students Visit Trinity College Admissions Office


As part of the summer writing academy, ninth grade students visited with Trinity College associate director of admissions, Kyle Smith ’05 on July 3. In the Reese Room at the Smith House, Mr. Smith explained the different components of a college application, particularly for Trinity College admissions that seeks deeper student narratives by being test optional. In the question and answer period, HMTCA students asked about GPA’s of applicants to Trinity College, the cost of books, and the fraternity system.

Learn more about the partnership between HMTCA and Trinity College here.

Heartbeat Ensemble’s Youth Play Institute (YPI) Spring 2018

HartBeat Ensemble‘s YPI, our paid theater internship for 16-21-year-olds.This program is in its 11th year, and has served more than 500 young people from Greater Hartford.

In this program, a group of youth co-creates an original play about a social justice issue over an 8-week period.Internships are available for stage managers, actors, and designers.

This is a great program for young performers, activists, visual artists, collaborators and writers. Many different personality types and levels of experience excel at YPI.

Interviews will take place February 7th and 10th.


Team Effort Helps Save Injured Hawk At Trinity College


On Monday, July 17, Hartford Magnet Trinity College Academy (HMTCA) science teacher Jared Lewis noticed an injured red-tailed hawk near McCook Hall at Trinity College. Lewis was on Trinity’s campus for the HMTCA summer science program. He called Campus Safety and Robert Cotto, Jr., the Director of Urban Educational Initiatives, at Trinity College. And that led to a team of people working together to help the injured raptor.

The young hawk was hopping around on the ground near McCook and trying to avoid people. Upon further inspection, it appeared the hawk had an injured left wing.

Unsure of who to contact, Cotto and security officers Jeff LeBreque of Trinity College and Edwin Santiago of Hartford Public Schools made several calls to local bird rescue centers. The State of Connecticut’s Department of Energy and Environmental Protection website offered these contacts as suggestions of people trained to handle distressed birds.

Finally, Grace Krick from “A Place Called Hope” raptor center answered Cotto’s call. Being in Deep River, CT, which is almost an hour away from Trinity College, she asked for pictures of the injured hawk. Within minutes, Grace had a volunteer, Nick D’Onofrio, in the Hartford area at Trinity College to collect the bird. Nick safely collected the young male hawk and without too much distress.


If the hawk can be quickly rehabilitated, then it will be released back near Trinity College. But it is likely that the hawk will be released to another location so it does not directly compete with its adult kin for food and space. Red-tailed hawks are territorial by nature.

A decade ago, there were very few urban red-tailed hawks. Now they are all around Hartford, including around Trinity College. Being in such close proximity to people, the red-tailed hawks can face a variety of dangers. But that also means they can sometimes get a helping hand, or wing.


For more information:

Dealing with Distressed Birds: CT DEEP Website

A Place Called Hope: A 501(c)(3) non-profit organization run entirely by volunteers along with donations of time, supplies and money from our supporters. One of the goals at A Place Called Hope, Inc. is to teach the public how to protect and respect wildlife, in particular Raptors. You can learn more about the organization here:

Meet the 2016 NSF-TEU Undergraduate Interns

The National Science Foundation – Teaching Experiences for Undergraduates kicked off last Monday, June 6, 2016 at Trinity College. The program brings together 12 undergraduate students (middle) from across the country in order to develop their knowledge and skill in teaching high school science.

A major goal of the program is support undergraduate science majors at small liberal arts college towards a career in teaching science. In order to accomplish this goal, the NSF-TEU interns, who are all majoring in one science discipline, take a science pedagogy course with Dr. Kurt Love and will participate in a summer teaching practicum under the supervision of experienced local teachers from the Hartford Magnet Trinity College Academy (HMTCA) in Hartford, Connecticut.

Here are some of the NSF-TEU interns.


Jacob Abaraoha


Jacob is a rising senior at Columbia University majoring in Earth science, with a concentration in urban teaching. Jacob is passionate about issues of equity and access in education, and about science education as a context for examining morality and social responsibility. He hopes to be a middle school science teacher, working on citizen science initiatives with students and using the classroom as a space for boundless scientific exploration. As a prospective educator, Jacob’s goals revolve largely around promoting critical inquiry, developing meaningful and lasting networks of support for students, encouraging students to recognize their efficacy in their communities, and helping students see science as a tool for social change.

Mariel Becker


I am Mariel Becker and I am a Junior at Wesleyan University. My major is Biology and I am also earning a Certificate in Jewish and Israel Studies. At Wesleyan I am part of the Ski Team, teach a fitness class, and TA for Introductory Biology and Elementary Statistics. This next semester I will be studying abroad at the University of Glasgow in Scotland (I am most looking forward to hiking the Highlands)! Although I am not sure if teaching is what I want to pursue, participating in the TEU program has been a valuable experience.

Carol Bowe


I am a senior physic major at Bryn Mawr College, a women’s college outside of Philly but I was born and raised in Boston. I have always had a passion for teaching. In fact, when I was little that’s what I wanted to be when I grew up and although that has changed slightly over the years, I am happy to once again be pursuing that career. Outside of teaching I am passionate about sustainability and environmental work. I also write spoken word poetry and recently competed in a national poetry slam as part of a team from my college.

Charlotte Gbomina


Hello, my name is Charlotte Gbomina (the G is silent). I am a rising senior at Grinnell College with a declared Biology, Spanish and Education major. I’ve been interested in education since the day my family moved to the U.S in 2003 when I noticed how fun learning could be. I was that one student that was always interested in concepts that almost everyone disliked and as I went further in my schooling, I encountered teachers who were passionate about teaching which inspired me to aspire to become a teacher. After graduation from college, I plan on going into the teaching profession to implement the philosophies I’ve learned.

Jess Voight


Hi! My name is Jess Voight and I am a senior Biomedical Engineering major and Models and Data minor at Trinity College.  On campus at Trinity I am involved with the Outdoors Club, Engineers Without Borders, and the Society of Women Engineers. I enjoy getting outdoors, gardening, and puzzles. Unlike most others in this program, I am not set on becoming a teacher in the future. Rather, I see this program as a way to expand my abilities as a leader and make a meaningful difference in the local community. Additionally, I see the need for students to develop a passion and interest in the sciences and hope I can help with that.

 Stanley Walker

Hello, my name is Stanley Walker and I’m a senior Astronomy Physics combined major at Whitman College. I am the sixth of seven children and I grew up Olympia Washington. I love getting outdoors, going on runs, and climbing on things. I am also a nerd in every sense of the word, I love comic books, video games, D&D, Harry Potter, etc. I chose an Astronomy Physics combined major because space is awesome and studying the origins and evolution of the universe is incredibly satisfying. I was homeschooled for the majority of my formal eduction. This has instilled in me a love for learning and a unique viewpoint on education that I would like to bring with me into a career as a teacher.

First Day of HMTCA Summer Academies at Trinity College

Theresa starting of high school

Today the Hartford Magnet Trinity College Academy (HMTCA) 9th grade summer writing and 10th grade science academies began at Trinity College. Although the two programs take place on Trinity’s campus, this is technically the first day of high school for the rising 9th grade students in the writing academy. Summer Academy administrator and HMTCA teacher Theresa Kemp (top right) explained this fact and other key info at the Fuller Arch before the start of classes.

These academies are part of the Trinity-HMTCA partnership and a key part of the students’ high school experience. The writing and science academies are taught by a mix of Trinity and HMTCA faculty, as well as undergraduate interns. HMTCA students earn high school credit for both the writing and science programs. Trinity College has hosted the writing and science academies since 2011.

Summer academy continues from June 21 to July 15.


Summer 2016 at Trinity


Trinity College slows down during the summer. But there are a number of programs and events that still happen to make the campus vibrant.

Are you on campus or planning to be on campus this summer? Trying to find out what’s going on at Trinity and around the City of Hartford? Here is a listing of various programs, places to eat around campus, events in Hartford, and more.


Programs on the Trinity College Campus

The National Science Foundation-Teaching Experiences for Undergraduates (June 6-July 22)

The HMTCA Summer Writing Academy (June 21 – July 15)


Where to Eat Near Trinity During the Summer

“Guide to Eating at Trinity During the Summer” by Jess Voight, T ’17


Events in Hartford (and around here too)

Trinity Today

June 2016 Events in Hartford by Real Hartford




Religious Life

A note from Megan O’Brien, Program Coordinator, Office of Spiritual and Religious Life, Chapel:

We do not have services throughout the summer on campus unfortunately but depending on what the faith background/interest is for the undergraduates on campus, here are some suggestions for places in the area that offer religious services:

Buddhist: Dae Yen Sa Buddhist Temple, New Hartford (

Episcopal: St. John’s Episcopal Church, West Hartford ( 

Jewish: Congregation Beth Israel, West Hartford (

Muslim: The Berlin Mosque, Berlin (

Roman Catholic: St. Joseph Cathedral, Hartford (

There are, of course, plenty of other places of worship around the area so they are welcome to explore! 

Want more information, you can contact Megan at

Loving Community Conversation on Housing Integration


Photo by Defining Studios, Hartford, CT, 2016

On April 21, the Connecticut Fair Housing Center hosted a panel in Hartford’s downtown on housing integration that included Trinity College Professor Jack Dougherty (middle left), author Lisa Belkin (middle right), and Hartford City Councilwoman Wildaliz Bermudez (far right). Pinch hitting for Professor Jelani Cobb, Trinity Director of Urban Educational Initiatives, Robert Cotto (far left) moderated the panel. The panel served as a public, community conversation on housing integration before the Center’s annual awards dinner.

Before the panel, Professor Dougherty presented an 15-minute introduction to housing and school segregation in the Hartford, CT area based on his research and book-in-progress, On the Line: How Schooling, Housing, and Civil Rights Shaped Hartford and its Suburbs. He offered slides that showed the close connection between housing restrictions that segregated neighborhoods by race and class, which resulted in school segregation.

After the presentation, the panel weaved together Dougherty’s work on housing and schools, Belkin’s account of a housing desegregation case in Yonkers, NY, and Bermudez’s community activism and involvement as an early plaintiff in the Sheff v. O’Neill school desegregation case.

As the CT Fair Housing Center 2016 Loving Civil Rights Award recipient, Lisa Belkin drew on her research and writing of “Show Me A Hero”. The book chronicled the contentious housing desegregation case in Yonkers, NY in the 1980s. An adaptation of the book also recently appeared as a mini-series on the HBO channel.

Throughout the afternoon, the audience of roughly 75 people had opportunities to ask the panelists questions. This generated a great deal of discussion. In the end, comparing efforts in Hartford, CT (school desegregation) with Yonkers, NY (housing desegregation) helped the audience understand each case better, along with the history and persisting challenges towards racial integration of housing and schools.


Additional photographs can be found at the CT Fair Housing Center Facebook page here.