Connections: Linking Talented Educators
Connections: Linking Talented Educators

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"Prior to winning the Milken Educator Award, I was lost and unsure about how I could make a greater impact. I did not know where to begin, and I lacked the network to help propel my words into actions. Additionally, I had to drop out of the doctorate program at Holy Family University due to my inability to afford my tuition. It was a difficult time, but with that said, I always ensure that I gave my very best to my school and my students.

"This award changed the trajectory of my life and my ability to make a greater impact. With the Award money, I was able to return to the doctorate program and continue with my studies in Educational Leadership and Policy. And with the Milken Educator network, I have been able connect with teachers, leaders and policymakers all across the United States, enabling me to make that greater impact I desired.

"You give teachers much more than an award, you give them an opportunity to be more. Since winning the award, I have been invited to speak at conferences and districts all across the United Stated about my work. I was invited to become a part of the Pennsylvania Teachers Advisory Committee. And I am only at the beginning of my long journey.

"Thank you for selecting me to become a part of the Milken family and believing in my ability to be a change-maker in education. Please know I will always be here to support any of your wonderful initiatives. I wear the Milken name and Milken Educator pin with much pride. Also, thank you you for celebrating the work of teachers. With the current state of our world, both political and otherwise, our teachers need you more than ever to help bring hope to the profession."

— Posted on Facebook on the one-year anniversary of her surprise Milken Educator Award notification

Jayda Pugliese (PA '16)