ATLAS

ABE Teaching & Learning Advancement System

Accessibility Toolbar

Text size:

Color selector:

Elizabeth (Liz) Andress

Adult Career Pathways Consultant

As the ATLAS Adult Career Pathways Consultant, Elizabeth (Liz) Andress is overseeing two related projects:

  • creation of an Adult Career Pathways curriculum resource library on the ATLAS website (to launch Fall 2016); and
  • design of professional development for managers and instructors as they create their own Adult Career Pathways courses, programs and partnerships (to begin Fall 2017)

Liz has been an adult basic education (ABE) professional for over 15 years.  She holds a M.A. in Education.  Most recently she taught in St. Paul Public Schools ABE program.  At the state level, she helped shape the Transitions Integration Framework (TIF) and has incorporated TIF skills in her instruction at all levels.  Liz led an ACES PLC as well.  She has written curriculum for and taught a variety of occupational and career-related courses, including a bridge course and integrated instruction in a FastTrac early childhood education program.  She was the curriculum writer and on-site coordinator for an award-winning workplace ESL project in medical manufacturing.  Liz has presented numerous workshops on a wide variety of topics at local, regional, state and national conferences.

Penny Brown

STAR Trainer

Penny Brown holds licenses in Social Studies, Special Education, Reading and Adult Basic Education. She has a graduate degree in Special Education: Learning Disabilities from Minnesota University, Mankato. Penny has been an Adult Basic Education teacher with the Carver-Scott Cooperative since 1997. She teaches in Shakopee, Chaska, and the Scott County Jail.

Penny works with ATLAS as a trainer for the Minnesota STAR project; she is currently going through the STAR trainer certification process. After seeing 15 years of ever-changing initiatives and reforms in education, Penny had felt rather cynical of any new program – but two years after beginning STAR, she now believes that STAR has staying power. She has seen student attendance and level changes increase, and the speed with which her students earn a GED has increased. Most importantly, her enjoyment of teaching and her students’ enjoyment of learning have increased. Her response to the casual observer who asks “Why STAR?” is “because it works.”

Penny has presented on vocabulary activities, prefixes and roots, and she is author of 100 Prefixes and Roots: Reproducible Mini-Lessons for Intermediate Readers.

Stephanie Sommers

ACES Coordinator

Stephanie Sommers is the ACES (Academic, Career and Employability Skills) Coordinator. She has been involved with the ACES initiative project since it began in 2011. She was a part of the team that worked to develop the TIF (Transitions Integration Framework), and she has presented extensively on using the TIF to teach transitions skills. Stephanie was one of the original facilitators for both face-to-face and hybrid PLCs for teachers around the state learning about ACES. She also co-developed two of the TIF-Lens series webinars: Developing a Future Pathway and Navigating Systems.

Stephanie earned her M.Ed in Adult Education from the University of MN. For the past 11 years, she has been a teacher with the Minneapolis Adult Education program. She has taught various levels of ELL and GED classes, as well as Citizenship and Career Pathways.

Rebecca Strom

MNI Cohort Lead

Rebecca Strom holds teaching licenses in Mathematics in both Secondary Education and Middle School levels, graduating from MN State University, Mankato in 1994. She started tutoring math in 1990, and since graduating from MSU, has taught and/or tutored varying levels of math ranging from junior high through college level at Bethany Lutheran College.

Rebecca began teaching math part-time through Mankato Area's ABE in 2007.  She teaches GED/Diploma/College-prep math both in the classroom and as an online computer lab course.

Rebecca has been involved in MNI (MN Numeracy Initiative) since 2010, and joined on as an Advisory Team member in 2011.  She has had the opportunity to share what she has learned through MNI by presenting at several regional conferences, Summer Institute, and the national COABE (Commission on Adult Basic Education) conference.  As MNI Cohort Lead, she is responsible for coordinating the MNI cohort experience and serving as point person for cohort participants.

Amy Vickers

MNI Senior Consultant

Amy Vickers is the MNI (MN Numeracy Initiative) Senior Consultant. Amy earned her M.Ed. in Adult Education from the University of Minnesota. She has served as an MNI Advisory Team member since 2011 and was also the MN 2014 GED® PD Coordinator for 2 years. She taught with Minneapolis Adult Education for 8 years, teaching all GED subjects including all levels of math. As MNI Senior Consultant, she provides leadership and coordination for the MN Math Institute and E-quip webinar series, and is taking the lead in embedding CCRS (College and Career Readiness Standards) into the MNI first-year cohort experience. She also continutes to serve on the MNI Advisory Team.