Suzanne DeVito

Suzanne DeVito

English/Special Education, Robbinsville High School
4th year

What teacher had the biggest influence on you as a student & why?: When I was an undergraduate student at The College of New Jersey, Dr. Tarter had the biggest influence on me. She always attended class with a positive attitude and carefully selected materials/content that were not only engaging but inspiring. Dr. Tarter spent a large portion of her time teaching us English but spent the rest of her time teaching women in prison. She would go to a prison in northern New Jersey and teach the women how to write their own autobiographical story. Sometimes she would even take students with her as interns to assist with the work. Dr. Tarter would often tell us that teaching how to write an autobiography to the women in prison was the hardest work ever but she loved it and the reward was huge. Dr. Tarter's passion and commitment to our class and these women was incredible. She lived by this idea that sometimes you find what you love in the strangest of places so don't limit yourself or your experiences in life.   Although, I never got a chance to go with her to the prison, I embraced this passion and commitment to finding what I love in life and not limiting myself to the same experiences but seeking out new opportunities to learn and grow. I will always be grateful for Dr. Tarter and the life she modeled. 

Favorite book: Persuasion” by Jane Austen 

Hobbies: Cycling, reading, traveling and viewing Broadway performances.  

Favorite color: Purple

Favorite meal: Lobster and Fettuccine Alfredo

Favorite musician or musical groups: Aerosmith

Favorite movie: Breakfast at Tiffany’s”

Proudest moment on the job: When one of my students who had been struggling tremendously to stay motivated and had experienced many challenges in the areas of writing was able to push through and graduate with his class. 

Fondest memory on the job: When my students found out I was leaving for a while and my one freshman student who I had known for a few years surprised me by coming to school with a beautiful bouquet of flowers. He then thanked me for all I had done for him.

What is your hidden talent?: I sing Karaoke.

What inspires you: I'm inspired by the people in my family who work hard everyday and continue to thrive despite the challenges/difficulties they have faced.  

Is there a quote you live by?: "The saddest thing in life is wasted talent" - Robert  De Niro, A Bronx Tale and "The future belongs to those who believe in the beauty of their dreams" - Eleanor Roosevelt 

How do you make connections with students?: I make connections with my students by sharing stories and my experiences in life and beyond. I also get to know them through our conversations both in and outside the classroom, as well as, inquiring about their interests and hobbies. 

What makes a good day at school?: Smiling students greeting me at the door!
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