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Articles tagged with: ACE Teaching Fellows

It's Time to Mold Some Clay

Thursday, February 23, 2017 by Bridgette McDermott - ACE 22, Dallas

“What did you do over the long weekend, Miss M?” asks Sarah, one of my fourth-graders, as she hurries into our classroom on Tuesday, February 21. I smile and pause, struggling to find the words to answer her question. Maybe it’s the lack of coffee in my system, but I find myself truly speechless in this moment. My mind begins to wander, reflecting on the beautiful gift of the weekend and the transformative power of the ACE journey.

An Ode to the Life I Never Planned

Friday, February 10, 2017 by Mary Grace Mangano - ACE 22, Chicago

Mary Grace Mangano ACE Teaching Fellows

I didn’t plan on being a teacher. I didn’t plan on being responsible for sixty-four little lives every day. I didn’t plan on working twelve hours or more each day and weekend.

5 Reasons You Should Apply to ACE Teaching Fellows

Monday, January 23, 2017 by Alex Kruszewski

I want to teach in Catholic schools

1. You will be CHALLENGED.

ACE calls our Teaching Fellows to embrace challenge: we are challenged to find ways to reach our students and to help them grow academically while also creating a sense of family in our classrooms and schools. This dual focus on heart and mind might just be the challenge you are looking for! Our ACE Teaching Fellows welcome the challenges of their classrooms and communities, creating opportunities for change with individual students and schools. Read “The Middle School Roller Coaster”, the story of Darby Evans (ACE 22) and her time in an English Language Arts classroom in Fort Worth, Texas. Many of our graduates have also leaned on their ACE experiences to tackle larger issues beyond the individual classroom. Jenny O’Donnell (ACE 16) has helped find new ways for St. Adalbert Catholic School to improve instruction and earn an A grade from the Indiana Department of Education. Read her story ”Seeking Challenge: Using Knowledge to Create Change” to see how the challenge of ACE Teaching Fellows can prepare you for future successes.

Risky Business

Thursday, January 19, 2017 by Katie Bodie, ACE 20 - Corpus Christi

First day of school

During the spring of my second year as an ACE teacher, I interviewed at a school that did not yet exist. I taught my demo lesson to the principal and president instead of students. I toured an elementary school and struggled to picture what it would look like with high school students walking the halls. Although it was difficult to predict what the first year may hold, I was drawn to Cristo Rey Dallas immediately.

3 Final Lessons from 2016

Thursday, January 05, 2017 by Mary Pullano - ChACE 15; ACE 20 - St. Petersburg

Mary Pullano ChACE 15 Final Lessons from 2016

The end of the year 2016 marks the end of my experience of the ACE in Chile teaching program. I have learned so much! Moving to the southern hemisphere turned most of my preconceptions about the country upside down. I knew that I was signing up for an adventure when I said yes to ChACE, but I had absolutely no idea what unexpected experiences and extraordinary people were ahead of me. I want to highlight some of the “teachable” moments that have helped me to grow as an educator and as a person. 

If I Could, I'd Still Choose You

Monday, December 19, 2016 by Theresa Steinmeyer - ACE 23, Tampa


Eight months after resolving to move back home to Chicago after college, I’m standing with one of my community members in front of a fourteen-foot plastic alligator at an official Florida Welcome Center rest stop. Over the past day and a half, we’ve driven through three states I’ve never seen before, cycled through the soundtracks of half a dozen musicals, and survived our first dinner at Waffle House. And yet, the most intimidating encounter is still a week away: our first First Day of School, when I’ll meet the 140 sophomores and juniors listed on my rosters.

Where Two (or Seven) Are Gathered

Monday, November 21, 2016 by Brett Cavanaugh - ACE 20, Brownsville

Brett Cavanaugh Community

As a discerning senior, I was certain of only two things: I wanted to serve the Church, and I enjoyed working with young people. With those two ideas as my guide, teaching in a Catholic school seemed like the natural fit. As I learned more about the ACE program, I was thrilled about the teacher training component and confident that I would grow in my faith through teaching. The great unknown was the pillar of community. As a quiet person, I was a bit hesitant. I was used to having time to be introspective and was comfortably confident in my ability to be independent.

A Letter to My Pre-ACE Self

Thursday, November 03, 2016 by Maeve Mulholland - ACE 22, Sacramento


Dear Maeve-before-ACE,

You’re feeling pretty good about yourself, aren’t you? You have just graduated from Williams College, a prestigious school, where you were captain of the lacrosse team and were surrounded by tons of super smart people. You have “suffered” through eight-hour stints at the library, written several 15-page papers, and done this all while maintaining a decent social life and enjoying your college experience. You figure you know yourself pretty well at this point. You are hardworking, motivated, and certain that you know how to handle a challenge. Next year you’ll start at Our Lady of Grace as the third-grade teacher. You’re sort of nervous to be moving across the country to live with people you barely know. The teaching part–that’ll be difficult–but, as I said, you’re a hardworking, motivated person, right? Surely you’ll figure it out. You know yourself pretty well, after all.

The Power of an Invitation

Wednesday, November 09, 2016 by Ryan Clark, Ph.D.

Ryan Clark ACE Teaching Fellows Invitation

“The servant-leader is servant first…It begins with the natural feeling that one wants to serve, to serve first. Then conscious choice brings one to aspire to lead.” –Robert Greenleaf

Back to Thee, O Notre Dame

Sunday, November 06, 2016 by Nick Padrnos - ACE 22, Biloxi

Nick Padrnos Alliance for Catholic Education Teacher

Current ACE Teaching Fellow Nick Padrnos (ACE 22, Biloxi) details his recent trek back to campus for the Notre Dame-Stanford football game. 

Love, Respect, and Goofiness

Thursday, November 03, 2016 by Maria Rodriguez - ACE 20, Chicago

Love Respect Goofiness Maria Rodriguez ACE Teaching Fellows

For me, the feelings I get from teaching are probably closely related to that same feeling that a preschooler gets when they get to school and see that they are going to get to play with a tub full of dried pasta noodles: excitement and exhilaration. Although I am often faced with struggles and challenges, ACE has showed me how the amount of purpose and growth outweighs all else. As a result, this new extraordinary adventure of teaching has helped me recognize my inner calling, my gift to share, and my fundamental philosophy which will guide my life forever: teach with love, teach with respect, and teach with goofiness.

The Most Powerful Question

Wednesday, October 26, 2016 by Peter Prindiville - ACE 21, Biloxi

Peter Prindiville ACE 21 Biloxi The Most Powerful Question

I can do hard things.

A Letter to My Favorite Student

Monday, October 24, 2016 by Anthony Barrett - ACE 22, Denver

Dear Student,

You have no idea how much I appreciate you and how much I love you. You can’t grasp it, because you don’t see what goes on between 3 p.m. and 8 a.m. 

A Love Letter to the Butterflies

Monday, October 10, 2016 by Abbey Dankoff - ACE 23, Richmond

LoveLetterToButterflies (1)

So, here we are. My calendar tells me we’re six weeks in, though I think twenty seems closer to capturing the reality of how full this time has been. I’m sitting before a Richmond sunset (#RichLove #RVACE #VirginiaIsForACErs), sipping rooibos tea out of my favorite purple mug as I write these words—a beautiful evening, no doubt. Today was, as always, a whirlwind; as always, a crash course in adulting; as always, a miracle. This morning, like all others before it, began the same way: a skilled execution of the classic “three snooze n’ roll,” fumbling for glasses from table to ground to face, the quickest bedside reading (one page a morning, try it), and, like clockwork, one singular thought has moved into my mind.

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