United Way of the Piedmont is proud to share the following release on behalf of our partner, Spartanburg Academic Movement (SAM). They have hired 3 new team members, one of which will be a shared position with United Way to deepen community relationships and align the work of SAM and United Way in support of children’s academic achievement. Below is SAM’s full release:
Spartanburg, SC — The Spartanburg Academic Movement (SAM) is expanding community engagement and impact with the hire of three new staff members: Mendy Mossbrook, Meghan Smith, and Savannah Ray. Each will lead different aspects of SAM’s work designed to impact student success county-wide. Support for these positions comes from an extension of two current community partnerships and funding through a Community Challenge Grant
Mendy Mossbrook has been hired as Director of SAM’s Continuous Improvement (CI) Institute. The CIInstitute, developed and launched with funding from a StriveTogether Community Challenge Grant Award, will train local educators and academic support non-profits in implementing data driven continuous improvement strategies in their operations. Mossbrook has career-long experience in rapid cycle continuous quality improvement, having been previously employed as Director of Engineering, NA, for Sealed Air Corporation and leading STEM career outreach programs with the Society of Plastics Engineers.
Meghan Smith has been hired to serve as SAM’s College and Career Readiness (C/CR) Project Manager. Her appointment to SAM is shared with the Spartanburg Area Chamber of Commerce and Spartanburg’s seven school districts. She will organize, fac
ilitate, and manage activities of the C/CR Collaborative Action Network, identifying and implementing strategies to support students’ attainment of skills included in the “Profile of the South Carolina Graduate.” Smith has had extensive work experience dealing with the challenges faced by first generation college students through her work with SC TEST PREP. Its “Open Doors” program supported a holistic approach to assisting youth in pursuing post-secondary ambitions. Smith comes to SAM and the Chamber with a strong network of contacts within area schools and community agencies including deep engagement with Hispanic communities in the area.
Savannah Ray has been hired as a dual appointment with SAM and the United Way of the Piedmont as Director of Educational Engagement and Partnerships. She will lead efforts to broaden active relationships with both organizations across the county’s diverse nonprofit, faith, and business sectors, seeking to align activities in support of children’s academic achievement. Ray was previously employed with the Girl Scouts of South Carolina, leading outreach teams for the Mountains to Midlands Council.
“Much of SAM’s work thus far has focused on kindergarten readiness and third grade reading. These outstanding additions to the SAM staff will make possible the expansion of our work across the cradle to career spectrum, including college/career readiness and post-secondary persistence and completion. We are very fortunate to have recruited the talent and experience represented by these three individuals,” said SAM Executive Director, John Stockwell.
About Spartanburg Academic Movement
Spartanburg Academic Movement (SAM) works to ensure, promote and expand student success in Spartanburg County through an all-in partnership of education, business, government, foundation, community and faith leaders. Working together, they pursue high levels of academic achievement for all children. SAM measures county-wide academic accomplishments from cradle to career, sets targets for these accomplishments, encourages and reports progress, and aligns collaborative action networks of non-profits and others to support students and schools in support of these targets. Visit www.learnwithsam.org to learn more.
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