May 22, 2018

NORTH ADAMS, MASS. — Susan Lubell ’11 M.Ed, the 2018 Massachusetts College of Liberal Arts (MCLA) Alumni Educator of the Year, was recognized by the State Universities of Massachusetts at the State House in Boston on Tuesday, May 22, as an outstanding educator. MCLA previously recognized Lubell at an on-campus event on May 3.

Lubell, director of special education at the Berkshire Arts and Technology Public Charter School (BART) in Adams, was one of nine educators – each of whom is a graduate of the state university’s teacher preparations programs – to be recognized for teaching excellence. 

At BART for more than a decade, Lubell started her education career as a substitute teacher. She went on to become a paraprofessional, then a special education teacher, a special education coordinator, and finally the director of special education.

Lubell grew up in the Boston area, earning her baccalaureate degree in art history from Wellesley College where she graduated as a Durant Scholar (summa cum laude), and was elected to Phi Beta Kappa. After graduation, she worked in a corporate environment, married, and had three daughters. After the birth of her youngest, she focused full-time on raising her children.

When her daughters were older, Lubell found herself retired during the prime of her life, and desired a purpose on which to focus her energy. She enrolled in the Master of Education program at MCLA, with a concentration in special education, and found herself “profoundly moved” by the curriculum she encountered at the College, which was taught by a group of committed and insightful professors. Both her mind and perspective “were expanded and deepened by the caring and nurturing educators at MCLA.”

Almost two centuries ago, Massachusetts became the first state to recognize the importance of teacher preparation programs by the establishing the first three schools dedicated to educating teachers.  Today, these institutions are comprehensive state universities educating students in multiple disciplines beyond education.  The Massachusetts State Universities continue to educate more than one-third of all public educators in Massachusetts.

The nine-campus Massachusetts State University System comprises four-year, baccalaureate and master’s degree-granting teaching universities.  They include six comprehensive institutions that combine a liberal arts education with professional development training, which include Bridgewater State University, Fitchburg State University, Framingham State University, Salem State University, Westfield State University, Worcester State University, and three specialized institutions, including the Massachusetts College of Liberal Arts in North Adams, Massachusetts College of Art and Design in Boston, and the Massachusetts Maritime Academy in Buzzards Bay. The state university system educates more than 52,000 students each year, and has more than 225,000 alumni.

Massachusetts College of Liberal Arts (MCLA) is the Commonwealth's public liberal arts college and a campus of the Massachusetts state university system. MCLA promotes excellence in learning and teaching, innovative scholarship, intellectual creativity, public service, applied knowledge, and active and responsible citizenship. MCLA graduates are prepared to be practical problem solvers and engaged, resilient global citizens. 

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