How SEAM is Leading a Generation of Strong Educators

As President and Co-President of SEAM (Student Education Association of Massachusetts), Caroline Pupecki (she/her) and Allison Morrissey (she/her) are helping to prepare the next generation of educators. SEAM is part of larger organizations such as the MTA (Massachusetts Teacher’s Association) and its parent organization, the NEA (National Education Association). Through SEAM, students on campus from all areas of education, whether it be general-ed, early elementary-ed, or special-ed, have access to resources and professional development training to equip them with the proper tools to be successful in the education field. Additionally, students can seek advising on education courses. “It’s a peer-mentorship type of relationship,” said Pupecki. “We have a lot of freshmen that ask the older SEAM members about what the education block is like for student teaching and the higher-level courses.”

Those pursuing the education field can rely on SEAM to prepare them for one of the most stressful moments of an education student’s career: the MTEL! The Massachusetts Test for Education Licensure (MTEL) is a four-hour long exam that is required for students to pass in order to be able to teach. SEAM hosts MTEL Information Nights where students with any questions regarding the exam can get clarification and study tips.

During the Summer of 2023, Pupecki and Morrissey attended the Aspiring Educator Conference (AEC) in Orlando, Florida with all expenses funded by SEAM. The conference featured the President of the NEA, Becky Pringle, as speaker and hosted workshops about global education issues. They also had the chance to network with other student educators from around the country. Pupecki and Morrissey describe the AEC as their most memorable moment.

Past meetings have involved a variety of events including career panels, making arts & crafts for Guiding Eyes for the Blind dogs, and an International Student Teaching info-session where students learned about the opportunity to complete half of their student teaching requirement overseas. “I love when we have current teachers come back and talk to us,” Morrissey says about her favorite event. “The last two years we’ve had former SEAM members talk to us, and they said how much SEAM helped them prepare to be a teacher.” “It’s great to hear from them specifically because they were in our exact position once,” Pupecki added. “They didn’t go to a different college or have a different situation; they were in our exact places. They’ve been in schools for only a couple years, so they talk about the transition out of college and becoming a teacher full-time.”

For those looking to pursue a career in education, “hone your time management skills!” Pupecki advised. “Also, be open to constructive feedback,” instructed Morrissey. “When you’re teaching there is going to be things you are not used to and things that don’t go well. You have to be willing to try something else.”

SEAM meets bi-weekly on Wednesdays in Maxwell Library room 104 at 5:00 p.m.

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