Ed.D. Program Highlights

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Doctoral Dissertations

Erik C. Leite

Erik C. Leite began his career as an eighth-grade science teacher for Roselle Public Schools. However, for the past fourteen years, Leite has worked as both an Assistant Principal and Principal for Roselle's middle and high schools. He's dedicated his career to advocating for students less fortunate than those in more affluent districts.

His dissertation, titled "21st Century Learning: Utilizing Technology in Mathematics Classrooms to Improve Problem-Solving Skills," explores the effectiveness of technology on enhancing students' problem-solving abilities. (https://www.steu.edu/-/erik-c-leite-defends-doctoral-dissertation-at-cse)

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Elizabeth DeMichino-Acquadro

Elizabeth began her career as an educator in private schools, where she was able to convey her passion for science through teaching. However, after earning her master's in educational leadership from SEU, she transitioned into more administrative roles. Currently, she is the head of upper school and guidance at Oratory Preparatory School in Summit, N.J.

DeMichino-Acquadro's dissertation, titled "Examining the Impact of Orientation and Mentoring on New Teacher Induction," examined current orientation and mentoring practices at a private suburban middle/high school. https://www.steu.edu/-/elizabeth-demichino-acquadro-defends-doctoral-dissertation-at-cse

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Alex Guzman

A charismatic leader, Alex has extensive experience in public education where he fervently shares his passion for chemistry and physics with his students. Formerly the Principal of Middlesex High School, Guzman worked to provide a collaborative learning experience between students and staff.

His dissertation titled, "An Examination of a Suburban District's English Language Learner (ELL) Program," explores the barriers ELLs face on their first day of school.

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Kurt Ceresnak

With more than a decade of service to New Jersey public schools as a teacher, coach and school administrator, Kurt is passionate about education. He currently is the principal at Netcong Elementary School in Netcong, N.J., and has previously taught at the middle and high school levels. Ceresnak also has served as an athletic and academic facilitator, assistant principal, principal, superintendent intern and grant coordinator.

His dissertation titled "Perceptions and Experiences of New Jersey School Principals When Implementing and Leading Educational Change Within a School" examines the ever-changing field of education in the state's public schools and how school principals are essential in determining factors that influence change within schools.

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Matthew A. Spelker

Matthew has been involved in education for many years. Most recently, Spelker was named Superintendent of the Harding Township School district, where he worked with the Harding school community to improve instruction, school climate, and the academic achievement of its students.

In 2013, the Harding Township School District partnered with the Saint Elizabeth University and the United Way to implement the Social Emotional Learning Initiative (SELI). Spelker's dissertation titled, "The Impact of a Social Emotional Learning Initiative on a School's Climate, Bullying, and Academic Achievement" explores the impact of social and emotional learning on students' education.

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Social Media Mentions

Stephanie Macaluso

Stephanie is the Principal of Paramus Catholic High School and has served in the Archdiocese of Newark for over 34 years. Her doctoral research investigates "Assessing School Climate" in which she advocates that an effective school climate is essential for a positive productive school.

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Tony LaRocca

Tony's dissertation, Examining the Impact of One-to-One Technology in Mathematics & Science, explored one high school's implementation of a one-to-one technology initiative and its impact on the students and staff of that district. The study revealed that the technology initiative had an overall positive impact on the students and staff by creating collaborative environments which promote efficiency in teaching and learning.

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