The first day of school is approaching quickly, and we are almost ready to welcome your children back. You'll see some new faces on the VIMSIA campus this year, and we wanted to take a moment to introduce them to you.
Lucinda Prosterman, MYP and DP English
After twenty-four years teaching Language Arts at Heights High School in Wichita, Kansas, Ms. Prosterman retired from that position to join her husband in St. Thomas. The past two years she has been teaching English part time at Antilles. She graduated from Wichita State University where she received her Bachelor of Arts in Secondary Education and is certified as a Highly Qualified Teacher of English, Speech, and Theatre. Throughout her career, she has put her certifications to good use teaching a wide variety of courses and developing creative approaches to developing strong reading and writing skills.
Jess Di Francesco, Lower Elementary Directress
Ms. Di Francesco comes from Connecticut and has worked in Montessori schools there for four years. After finishing training in Hartford in 2015, she led a lower elementary classroom at a public school in the same city. She is very excited to be here on the island and loves snorkeling and meeting sea creatures.
Kate Ludick, Upper Elementary Directress
Ms. Ludick is from Novelty, Ohio. She graduated from Cleveland State University First College (a progressive education division of the University) with a degree in English Literature with some additional postgraduate English coursework from City College of New York. She has both Association Montessori Internationale Elementary (ages 6-12) and Adolescent (ages 12-18) diplomas. Kate has worked in Montessori and progressive education in a variety of roles for almost 20 years, living and working in Canada, USA, Spain, Ireland, and Indonesia. Special training includes “All Kinds of Minds” (Dr. Mel Levine) approach to learning differences, Montessori Model United Nations teacher training, Orton-Gillingham method for teaching reading, writing, and spelling from the Institute of Multi-Sensory Education, and the Green School Educator’s course from The Green School in Bali, Indonesia. She is a certified yoga teacher via the Cleveland Clinic School of Yoga. Kate loves reading, writing and the arts. She has been in sports her whole life – a gymnast in her early years and continuing on to play volleyball and row in college. She was the assistant coach at Cleveland State’s Division I cross country team, coached gymnastics and was the company and stage manager for Cleveland Contemporary Dance Theatre.
Kelsey Van Morrison, Spanish Infusion Teacher's Assistant
Ms. Van Morrison was born and raised in St. Thomas. She started her education with VIMSIA as a two year-old and proceeded to graduate in one of VIMSIA's first IB classes. She recently graduated from Ohio Wesleyan University with BAs in Sociology/Anthropology, Politics and Government, as well as Women and Gender Studies. During her undergraduate years she was fortunate enough to further her passion for global cultures by studying in Bueno Aires, Argentina, Cuba, and Chicago where she worked with underrepresented social and political activists. Ms. Van Morrison is very excited to be working with a program that gave her so many incredible opportunities as a child. She plans to pursue a JD PHD in Sociology.
Alayna Belshe, Spanish Infusion Teacher's Assistant
Ms. Belshe was born and raised on St. Thomas. She is joining our Spanish infusion team as an assistant in Ms. Morrison's classroom. She got her start speaking Spanish in Señor Araujo's classroom here at VIMSIA and is excited to be back on campus. Currently she is working on her Bachelor's in Communication at UVI.
Maggie Guzman, Spanish Infusion Teacher's Assistant
Maggie is originally from Maine. She received her Bachelor's in Political Science and English from the University of Southern Maine in Portland. After college, Maggie spent several years traveling and teaching environmental education, farming and wilderness programs. She worked in Seattle, Utah, Upstate New York, Montana and various parts of Maine before finding a home here in the Virgin Islands. She also works part time taking care of the trails on Hassel Island.
Radames Ortiz, Spanish Infusion Teacher's Assistant
Mr. Ortiz joined VIMSIA in 2017/2018 as a Spanish Speaking Teacher's Assistant. He was born and raised in Puerto Rico. After high school, he received a baseball scholarship to go to college and holds a sports marketing and administration Bachelor's degree from Northern State University in Aberdeen, SD. Radames has worked at a homeless shelter in Minneapolis, MN for the past five years. He is happy to be back home in the Caribbean where he can enjoy the beaches and the island beauty. Of course, watching, playing and coaching baseball are still at the top of his hit parade.
Jezellia Sujanani, Spanish Infusion Teacher's Assistant
Ms. Jezellia is a native of St. Thomas who also lived in the Dominican Republic and Jamaica as a child. She is fluent in both English and Spanish and has a background in Communications, Accounting, and Health Sciences fields. Her love of the Spanish language and the Montessori style of teaching has led her to join the Spanish Infusion team. She is excited to have the opportunity to share her knowledge with the students of VIMSIA.
Kara Ebe, Director of Admissions
Ms. Ebe has a Master's Degree in Teaching from Marian University and Bachelor's Degrees in International Business from the University of Missouri. She taught High School Math and has worked in higher education as both an Academic and Career Advisor. Ms. Ebe is originally from Arkansas, but she came to St. Thomas from Louisville, Kentucky where she worked in retail and supply chain management. She is excited to be working in education again and looks forward to making a positive impact as a part of the VIMSIA family.
When you see these new faces on campus, please take a moment and welcome them to the VIMSIA family!