Nation’s Top Educators Prepared by Colleges of Education

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(May 2, 2014, Washington, D.C.) – The American Association of Colleges for Teacher Education (AACTE) applauds the Council of Chief State School Officers’ 2014 National Teacher of the Year Sean McComb, the three additional finalists and the colleges of education that helped prepare all of them for their highly successful careers.

McComb, who is also the 2014 Maryland Teacher of the Year, teaches English at Patapsco High School & Center for the Arts in Baltimore. Additionally, he oversees the school’s Advancement via Individual Determination (AVID) program. He completed his undergraduate and graduate preparation at the University of Pittsburgh, earning a bachelor’s degree English literature and master’s degree in English education.

“We’re delighted that University of Pittsburgh alumnus Sean McComb has been named National Teacher of the Year,” said Alan Lesgold, dean of the School of Education at the University of Pittsburgh, which also honored McComb with its distinguished alumni award for K-12 educators last month. “Sean is a special example of the many young people who leave schools of education ready to help improve the lives of children who need all the teaching expertise we can provide. We’re proud of him and of the many others who are trying to emulate him.”

All of the three other finalists for the 2014 National Teacher of the Year also received their preparation through colleges of education.

  • Dorina Sackman, 2014 Florida Teacher of the Year (master’s degree in English as a second language/applied linguistics – University of Massachusetts)
  • Ryan Devlin, 2014 Pennsylvania Teacher of the Year (master’s degree in educational leadership – California University of Pennsylvania)
  • Melissa Ann Porfirio, 2014 Virginia Teacher of the Year (master’s degree in curriculum and instruction – George Mason University)

“AACTE congratulates these outstanding education professionals and thanks them for their service to students and for their leadership in the field,” said Sharon P. Robinson, Ed.D., president and CEO of AACTE. “They exemplify all that we expect in our nation’s teachers – impressive instructional skills, unwavering commitment to their students’ education and welfare and a drive to always grow and improve their professional practice. AACTE is proud to honor their accomplishments and the educator preparation programs that contributed to their success in the classroom.”

AACTE is a member of the National Teacher of the Year Selection Committee, comprising representatives from 15 national education organizations that choose four finalists from state nominations, conduct personal interviews with the finalists and ultimately select the National Teacher of the Year.


AACTE: Serving Learners
The American Association of Colleges for Teacher Education is a national alliance of educator preparation programs dedicated to the highest quality professional development of teachers and school leaders in order to enhance PK-12 student learning. The 800 institutions holding AACTE membership represent public and private colleges and universities in every state, the District of Columbia, the Virgin Islands, Puerto Rico and Guam. AACTE’s reach and influence fuel its mission of serving learners by providing all school personnel with superior training and continuing education.

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