Literacy Specialists

For those who are trying to decide between the many different Master’s programs that SUNY Potsdam has to offer, here’s a little insight into one of the programs…

I am currently majoring in the MSED Literacy Specialist program, which I love!  This program has given me a great opportunity to get involved in the schools right away, while getting paid.  What college student wouldn’t want to make a little extra money?  The MSED Literacy Specialist program gives Master’s students the chance to work first hand with a Literacy Specialist at a local school.  However, this is nothing like student teaching or any type of practicum.

During this internship YOU are the teacher!

Each day I meet with different groups of students for a half hour at a time.  The groups range from one-on-one up to two students, but could be more depending on how many students need this service.  For each group I plan lessons that are focused on the students’ needs, and then teach the lesson.  Not only am I teaching, but I also assess the students to see if they are improving in their literacy skills.  Based on these assessments, the student’s services are either increased or decreased.  This means that my groups are changing constantly.

This internship lasts for two semesters, and takes place of the Literacy Practicum.  You are able to work for half a day, or for a whole day, depending on your schedule and what the school you are placed in offers.  I find that there can be some benefits to doing this internship:

1. You make money, while practicing what you are studying.

2. You are getting into a reading room right away, so you can see if that is what you really want to do.

3. Being involved in the classroom gives you a great opportunity to connect what you are learning in your courses to how it can be used in a reading room… Which you will do for ALL of your courses!

I have found this internship to be such a great opportunity!  I have made connections with many faculty members and administration, as well as learned so much in just the short time that I’ve been in the reading room.

If you are looking to become a Literacy Specialist, and proceed with the MSED Literacy Specialist program, I highly recommend that you consider taking advantage of this opportunity!

Good luck to all!

People of Potsdam

"My experience at SUNY Potsdam has been well so far...I have an
assistantship that not only gives me a break on tuition but it gives me
job experience and gets me ready for the future."

-Alyssa, M.M. in Performance, the Crane School of Music at SUNY Potsdam.

People of Potsdam shows the everyday faces of SUNY Potsdam's campus and

Adopt-A-Bear Cub Mentoring Program

Are you looking to get involved in the community and give back?  Well, the Adopt-A-Bear Cub Mentor Program is a great way to do so!  This mentor program gives area college students the chance to work with students at the local Lawrence Avenue Elementary School in Potsdam.

The school is located less than two miles from the SUNY Potsdam campus.  College students are given the chance to work with students either Mondays/Wednesdays or Tuesdays/Thursdays, from approximately 3:15pm to 4:15pm.  For the first half hour the program focuses on academics, such as homework, reading, etc.  The remainder of the time is given to playing games, going outside, etc.

Not only is this program a great opportunity for college students to get involved in the community, but the elementary students love seeing their mentor each day!  The elementary students involved in this program enjoy spending one-on-one time with their mentor, who they get to know and form a relationship with.  By the end of the program you won’t want to leave!  The elementary students involved in this mentor program are hand picked by the school counselor, Sue Pike.

I was a supervisor for the Adopt-A-Bear Cub Mentor Program for three semesters, an a mentor for multiple semesters.  As an education major, this program has taught me a lot about management, different home-lives that students come from, and much, much more!  Being a mentor also gave me the chance to form a relationship with a student who really benefitted from one-on-one time with someone who was always there for her.

I highly recommend being involved in this program no matter what your major!  This is a great opportunity for everyone, and only takes two hours a week.

If you are looking to get involved in this program I recommend that you fill out this survey:  Once you have filled out this survey you will be enrolled in a moodle course that provides a lot of information regarding the program.  Nicole Feml is the supervisor for all college students, and can be contacted at, or found in 112A Satterlee Hall.

In addition, there will be two training sessions:

Monday/Wednesday Volunteers:

January 26th, 2015: 3:15pm – 4:15pm

Lawrence Avenue Elementary School Cafeteria

Tuesday/Thursday Volunteers:

January 27th, 2015: 3:15pm – 4:15pm

Lawrence Avenue Elementary School Cafeteria

The program will officially start on:

January 28th & 29th, 2015: 3:15pm – 4:15pm

Lawrence Avenue Elementary School Cafeteria

And ends on:

May 6th & 7th, 2015: 3:15pm – 4:15pm

Lawrence Avenue Elementary School Cafeteria


Hi Everyone,

My name is Grace Cady, and I am currently a Graduate Student at SUNY Potsdam.  I just finished my first of three semesters in the MSED Literacy Specialist program here at SUNY Potsdam.  Not only am I completing my masters degree through SUNY Potsdam, but I also received my Bachelors Degree in Early Childhood/Childhood Education (Birth-Sixth Grade) specializing in English at SUNY Potsdam.  I just loved Potsdam so much that I decided to stay!

I am from a small town in the Adirondacks located on Lake George, called Bolton Landing,  What drew me to SUNY Potsdam was the small town community that both the campus and surrounding area has to offer.  The classes are small so you are able to be involved and form a connection with the professor and other students.  I have found that this really helps when there are group projects, or you are struggling.  These small classes really allow you to feel comfortable and succeed.

In my small hometown I was really involved in different activities in and out of school.  This carried over when I came to Potsdam.  The small community is great for getting involved!  It gives you the chance to join many different clubs, organizations, and other activities.  For those in education, there are many opportunities to substitute teach, or volunteer in the many surrounding schools.  This is a great time to get involved!

Feel free to come for a visit, or get in contact with one of our many Graduate Student Ambassadors to find out what else they have to say about SUNY Potsdam.  This is a great college to be a part of, and I hope that you are able to enjoy it just as much as I have!



Hi all! My name is Katie Binder, and I am currently a graduate student in the Masters of Science in Teaching in Childhood Education (grades 1-6) program at SUNY Potsdam.  I attended SUNY Potsdam for my undergraduate degree and graduated with my Bachelor of Arts in Dance with concentrations in technique and composition with a minor in Pre-Creative Arts Therapy.

What brought me to becoming a graduate student at SUNY Potsdam is my passion for education and interest in teaching kinesthetic learning in the classroom. The MST in Childhood Education program has encouraged me to investigate becoming an innovative educator and inspires me every day to follow my dreams.

I am currently in a cohort of 13 other future educators from the US and Canada, which creates an exciting environment for all of us. The program includes wonderful faculty, whom care and value each student for who they are.

We focus on different learning theories, strategies, management, elementary subjects, as well as get first hand experience. The faculty encourages passion for education and for all of us to find our purpose in life. I look forward to updating you on my time in the MST Childhood Education program.







As the semester comes to an end no matter which way I turn I keep hearing the horrible F word… Finals, Finals, Finals. Luckily, there is an upside to this! One of our wonderful dining halls, Lehman, hosts a free late night breakfast where students and staff can go for some yummy comfort foods, see their friends or possibly professors and of course, try to forget about that dreadful F-word… at least for a little bit!

For a sneak peek check out the collage I made:

  • In the top left corner picture we have Professor Carol Rossi-Fries ( Part of the Curriculum & Instruction, Secondary Education, Social Studies Education, and Center for School Partnerships and Teacher Certification- Student Teaching Supervisors)  and Professor Laura Brown (English Education and Secondary Education)
  • Below that, on the left side as well, you can see two graduate students, Alyssa and one of our own ambassadors- Andrea,  from the Science department (MST and BA/MST program)
  • To the right of that, are all of the free goodies from PACES dining service (Fritos, Apple sauce, bubble sheet, water, cereal, granola bars, post its, candy cane, and a #2 pencil!)
  • And last but not least, Andrea (same one as lower left picture) with the special of the night comprised of eggs, sausage, bacon, hash-browns, and a waffle!

Needless to say, it was a great night!

Hope you all had a great finals week, or are surviving at the current moment.

Happy Holidays!

Hello There!

Hello everyone!

Thanks for visiting the SUNY Potsdam Graduate blog, I hope you’re enjoying it so far!

Well, first things first (I’m the realest… ha just kidding!), my name is Moriah but most people call me Mya. I am from lower New York, in Sullivan County from a small rural town called Liberty. I fell in love with the campus and decided to complete my undergrad here with a dual major in history and secondary social studies education! During my four years here I kept falling in love, this time with the faculty and friends I made along the way, and decided to continue my education here at Potsdam in the Curriculum and Instruction program concentrating in secondary social studies.

The program started in the summer, shortly after graduation, offering a flexible schedule for those who have jobs and/or obligations during the day time. Most of my classes take place in the evening, with a few exceptions, giving me plenty of time to pursue some of my own personal enjoyments such as Adopt-A-Bear Club (similar to big sister & big brother), volunteering at the Potsdam Humane Society, and of course, trying out new recipes in my new crock-pot for the holidays! So far, I can say it’s been a smooth and enjoyable journey!

It’s hard to pin-point just one reason why I decided to stay at Potsdam, but I can narrow it down to the opportunities that led to the best experiences I will probably ever have in my life! There are a variety of clubs, organizations, eateries (Yes, those are important, especially when PACES Dining Service was rated #1 of all the 27 colleges and universities of its size in the SUNY Student Opinion Survey!), and activities I could try out to discover what was right for me! I was able to uncover new hobbies and interests while meeting great people along the way.

Even in the graduate program these opportunities are still available; with a simple walk into the Student Union where the clubs and organizations I mentioned are usually tabling and waiting to introduce themselves to you through fun games and sign-up sheets. Or, you can find what you’re looking for on flyers and table-tents all over campus for events going on throughout the week! The options are plentiful and the best part is even in grad school I am able to try new things if I want to and have time to focus on my academics! Which I should be getting back to now since finals week is next week!

Thank you for visiting the blog and hope to see you soon!

Happy Holidays!

hehe :)