Future of Work in Education

Saturday, March 2
10:30 a.m.–3:00 p.m.
Curry College

Gather in person with fellow members of the Dartmouth community to connect and network with alumni who are making a difference for students, teachers, and communities. Hosted by Curry College President Jay Gonzalez ’93.

We welcome everyone’s participation—whether you are currently working in education, looking to break into the field, or simply interested in learning more about where education is headed.

Register Now

If you are a student looking for transport to Curry College, feel free to reach out to the Dartmouth for Life team at catherine.louise.darragh@dartmouth.edu.

And with any other questions, contact the Dartmouth for Life team at catherine.louise.darragh@dartmouth.edu.

Schedule of Events

Welcome and Reception

10:30–11:00 a.m.
Morning beverages and light snacks will be available.

From Crisis to Creativity: The Evolution of Teaching in the Post-Pandemic Era

11:00–11:45 a.m.
Our educational system has been impacted by a variety of factors: a global pandemic, staffing struggles, teacher burnout, and more. Hear from a panel of pre K–12 educators on how they are tackling today’s challenges.

Sara Zrike ’99
Instructional Coach, Boston MA

After graduating from Dartmouth, Sara Zrike ’99 spent a year volunteering in Camden, NJ, before attending graduate school at Tufts University for education. She has worked for the Boston Public Schools since 2001, teaching grades 2 and 4 at the Mather School, the oldest elementary school in the U.S., and then was the director of instruction at the Hurley School, a two-way bilingual school. During her 14 years at Hurley, the school moved from a Level 3 to Level 1 school in the state, closing traditional achievement gaps for students. Most recently, Sara has served as an instructional coach at the Murphy K-8 School, one of the largest schools in the city. She works with grades 2, 3, 4, ESL, and special education teachers, observing in classrooms, providing feedback, looking at data to inform instruction, and meeting with small groups of students in targeted learning groups. She is passionate about increasing opportunities for access for all students. Sara lives in Roslindale with her husband, also a BPS teacher, and daughter.

Dan Monahan '87 TH'88
Science Instructional Coach, Cambridge Public Schools

Dan Monahan ’87 TH’88 worked as a computer/production engineer in the electronics and wind power industries for five years, followed by two years of teaching math at the Putney School in Putney, Vermont. He then pursued his MEd from the Harvard Graduate School of Education and taught middle school math and science for 11 years. He has been a science instructional coach in Cambridge for the past decade and is currently serving as the president of the Cambridge Education Association, the local union in the Cambridge Public Schools representing 1,500 teachers, administrators, clerks, substitutes, and paraprofessionals. Dan has a National Board for Professional Teaching Standards Certification in Early Adolescent Math, a second master’s degree in education management, and a principal certification in Massachusetts.

Jen McNally
Professor and Math Area Coordinator, Curry College

Jen McNally, Ed.D. recognizes that teacher quality is the most impactful factor for student achievement. Throughout her education career, she has pursued opportunities to advance K-12 teacher and faculty development. After spending five years as a classroom teacher, Jen led a team of classroom coaches for Scholastic, Inc. as they provided in-classroom instructional support across New England. When she joined the Curry College faculty in 2011, she continued to lead faculty development initiatives and served as the College’s Faculty Innovation Coordinator (2016-2018) and later has assumed the role of Math Area Coordinator (2021-present). Her current research project has earned National Science Foundation funding and seeks to identify and explicate instructional practices that support discourse in the statistics classroom.

Robert Crawford ’90 (Moderator)
Director of Advancement, Fay School

Rob Crawford ’90 is director of advancement at Fay School in Southborough, Mass. After graduating from Dartmouth, he taught English in grades 5-9 for eight years. Since then, he has served in advancement and marketing roles at several independent schools in New England. A father of five, Rob has coached 54 seasons of youth sports; has run 39 races of 13.1 miles or longer; is a member of the Yawkey Baseball League’s Hall of Fame; and was elected vice president of Red Sox Nation in 2007. He earned a MEd at Lesley College and an MBA at the University of Michigan.


12:00–1:30 p.m.
Held concurrently with the Designing the Future of Education Workshop.

Designing the Future of Education Workshop

12:30–1:30 p.m.
A design thinking workshop that guides participants through reflection, articulation, and application of their educational values to help shape the future of education.

Rafe Steinhauer
Assistant Professor of Engineering, Dartmouth College

Rafe Steinhauer is an educator, father, and sports enthusiast. Professionally, he is most interested in the design of education and the education of design, especially helping students and educators bring their values to the foreground of learning. At Dartmouth’s Thayer School of Engineering, Rafe is an instructional assistant professor, teaching an introductory undergraduate course on design thinking; the capstone engineering design course for bachelor of engineering degrees; a continuing ed alumni course on life in the 21st century; and he is developing a new course on the intersections of design and education. His Studio for Emergent Education Design publishes lesson plans and educational materials in design education, engineering education, and life/career education (website forthcoming). Rafe also helps run a grant program that partners with any instructor at Dartmouth to reimagine an assignment in their course as a design project, thus deepening learning and engagement. You can read Rafe’s latest personal teaching statement here and his thoughts about the future of higher education at the outset of lockdown here.

Leaders in Education: Finding Motivation and Succeeding in Challenging Times

1:30–2:15 p.m.
Educational leaders reflect upon systemic challenges including equity of access, talent systems, mental health and wellness, and the role of leadership in driving positive change.

Jay Gonzalez ’93
President, Curry College

Jay Gonzalez ’93 is the president of Curry College and has served in that role since July 31, 2023. Jay has a deep breadth of experience in law, government, education, politics, advocacy, and business leadership. He is the 15th Curry president and is the first Hispanic leader of the College.

Jay was born and raised in Cleveland, Ohio. He earned his bachelor of arts from Dartmouth in 1993 and his law degree from Georgetown University Law Center in 1996. He moved to Boston in 1998. Gonzalez is married to Cyndi Roy Gonzalez and has two daughters, Isabel and Abby.

Stephen Zrike ’98
Superintendent, Salem Public Schools

Stephen Zrike ’98 is in his fourth year as the superintendent of the Salem (Mass.) Public Schools. During his tenure as the district leader, Salem schools have focused on expanding access to early childhood programming, enhancing career technical pathways, growing early college opportunities, and strengthening mental health supports for Salem's youth. In doing this important work, the Salem school system is driven by a fierce commitment to dismantling inequities so that all students are provided with a first-class educational experience. Stephen came to Salem from Holyoke Public Schools, where he served as receiver/superintendent. He previously served as the superintendent of schools in Wakefield, Mass., and as chief of elementary schools for the Pilsen-Little Village Network in the Chicago Public Schools.

Dr. Diane Nagel Palmer
Former Director of the Antigua International School in Antigua, Guatemala

Diane Palmer has worked in education all her adult life, teaching in public and private schools at all levels of education; training teachers, particularly in civic education; writing curriculum; and serving in school administration. Diane has lived and worked in the United States, Latin America, and Europe. Most recently she was general director of the Antigua International School in Antigua, Guatemala, a toddler–12 school. She is fluent in Spanish.

Kaitlin Gastrock ’04 (Moderator)
Consultant, EdStrategies

Kaitlin Gastrock ’04 leads talent and communications consulting for EdStrategies, a firm that fuels growth and innovation for education organizations. Previously, Kaitlin led the Regional Communications and Public Affairs team at Teach For America, where she was responsible for digital marketing, earned media, advocacy, and public funding campaigns for the national nonprofit’s 52 regions. She began her career in the office of Massachusetts Governor Mitt Romney during his 2008 presidential campaign.

Kaitlin earned her BA in government from Dartmouth, master’s of public policy from Brown, master’s of psychology and human development from Harvard, and EdD from Vanderbilt. Based in the Boston area, Kaitlin is the board chair at The Elizabeth Peabody House and a member of the Corporation at The Winsor School.

Networking Reception

2:15– 3:00 p.m.
Reflect upon the day with your peers and connect with the speakers.