ALEX SOSA, ENGLISH LANGUAGE ARTS
Alex Sosa is a native New Yorker and successful graduate of the New York City Public School system. Through his dedicated educators and mentors, he has come to love learning about life through literature. Alex believes English class teaches us more than just to read and write; it teaches us to think critically about the world we live in and how we can actively shape it instead of being shaped by it.
As an English Teacher with UA Maker, Alex hopes to use technology in his classroom to redefine the way learners experience literature. He believes in harnessing student’s knowledge to create a rich classroom culture of varied and valued experiences. These collective experiences will lead to sharp, dynamic writing that occupies the page with the learner’s stories, and, in the process, creating literature that is both insightful and introspective.
Alex completed his Bachelor of Arts at Hunter College In New York City, and his Master of Arts in Secondary English at Boston College’s Donovan Urban Scholars Program. He currently resides in Brooklyn, where he adventures for fun foods to eat.
Erin Hunkemoeller, Spanish
Erin Hunkemoeller, Spanish Teacher, born and raised in Cincinnati, Ohio. She earned a Bachelor of Arts in Spanish and a Bachelor of Science in Spanish Education at the University of Dayton. While teaching at Northmont High School (NHS) in Clayton, Ohio, Erin taught and developed curriculum for Spanish Levels 1-4, with a focus on Spanish 1 and 2 at the beginning level. While at NHS, Erin was color guard director, Spanish club advisor, and co-founder of Catalyst, the school's a cappella group. Most recently, she taught Spanish K-7 for Blue School in Manhattan and is very excited to be part of the UA Maker staff.
Erin believes in teaching language and culture through hands-on experience and need-based communication. She believes that the goal of education is life-long learning and curiosity, and that language and culture learning are key components to success in our ever-changing world. Erin has presented at language conferences in different states around the country, and has led groups of students in educational travel abroad.
When not in the classroom, she enjoys studying and competing in ballroom dancing and giving dessert and history tours as a licensed New York City tour guide.
JARED RUSSO, Englsih
Jared Russo is a life long learner and Special Education teacher. He completed a Bachelor of Arts at the University of California Berkeley, and a Master of Arts at the New York University. He is a proud visual artist, and believes that performance and practice in the arts are excellent training ground for character and critical thinking. Most recently he put his philosophy into action leading the Sony Stop-Motion Animation Project and the Music Unites Youth Choir.
MARGARITA LOPEZ, ENGLISH LANGUAGE ARTS & AP English LaNguage and Composition
Margarita, a Brooklyn native, attended Brooklyn College in New York City where she studied Journalism and Creative Writing. While at Brooklyn College she realized her commitment to social justice and what it means for her to be an activist - by being an active member in organizations she was (and remains) passionate about: newspaper, the Puerto-Rican Alliance, and the Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, and Transgender Alliance.
In 2014, Margarita completed a Master of Arts program at Teachers College, Columbia University in Secondary Teaching of English/English Education. While at Teachers College, Margarita's commitment to social justice through working in education strengthened.
She is a writer who believes in using media literacy as a vessel to get young people to think critically and begin to unpack larger themes and messages that permeate their lives. Margarita asks her students to push against the media and provide alternative perspectives for viewing their world. At the core of her pedagogy, Margarita believes that young peoples' voices are essential to the way that we navigate literature and the world around us.
When Margarita isn't teaching, she is spending time with friends, writing, traveling and spending time with her partner and their English Bulldog, Langston at the dog park.