Education and teaching Alumni

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Matt Coia, B.S. ’06
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Matt Coia is a performance analyst for M&T Bank and was local middle- and high-school teacher before working in technology services. Matt Coia is a performance analyst for M&T Bank and was local middle- and  high-school teacher before working in technology services. He credits undergraduate research as helping him feel real impact in his work. Learn more. 
John Guzda, B.S. ’12
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 John Guzda is a high school social studies teacher who participated in action-based search in a school in Ghana, West Africa while studying as an undergraduate.John Guzda started his undergraduate research knowing that he was passionate about teaching. His completed his action-based research project in Ghana, West Africa and focused on classroom management. Guzda—who is a social studies teacher in New Orleans, Louisiana—presented his work as an undergraduate at the National Council for the Social Studies in Seattle. Guzda said his international travels catalyzed his decision to move to New Orleans after graduation. Learn more. 
Devon Holler, B.S. ’17
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Devon Holler is pursuing a graduate degree in early childhood studies from Walden University.Devon Holler examined the effects of Common Core State Standards curriculum on creativity from the perspective of teachers. She coupled academic research with a study-abroad trip to Zambia, Africa to learn culturally-responsive approaches to teaching. Holler is pursuing her master’s in education, and says the skills she learned in foreign classrooms are ones that she applies to her graduate studies in education. Learn more. 
Crystal Holmes-Smith, B.S. ’15, M.S.Ed. ’16
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Crystal Holmes-Smith complemented her undergraduate research with study-abroad experiences at Buffalo State. She’s currently serving as a Peace Corps volunteer co-teaching English as a foreign language in Nicaragua.Crystal Holmes-Smith studied in Santiago, Chile thanks to support from the Edgar H. Turkle International Volunteer and Service-Learning Scholarship Fund. Since graduating from Buffalo State with degrees in childhood education and literacy, Holmes-Smith has taught elementary school in Honduras and is now in her first year of Peace Corps service in Nicaragua. Learn more. 
Sarah McNutt, B.A. ’11
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Sarah McNutt  is an art and tinker teacher based in San Francisco, California. She is also a ceramicist whose work has been featured across the United States. Sarah McNutt is an artist and art educator based in San Francisco, California. She says undergraduate research “was a great solution for artists [at Buffalo State] to continue the momentum of their work.” McNutt continues to examine how we process and rationalize visual information, and how educators can use those insights to provide a better learning experience for students. Learn more.
Stan Skotnicki, B.S. ’05
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Stan Stonicki developed his passion for nature as a child and grew up spending time in the woods with his father. He attended Buffalo State as a non-traditional student to study geoscience education and the world in its most natural form. Stonicki’s undergraduate research involved examining the structural geology features of the Adirondack mountains. Since graduating, Stonicki (who is a full-time teacher in Western New York) has continued his research during the summer months through a program called PolarTREC, which links teachers and researchers. Learn more.