In the News

WEDF Presents Gurel Award to North High Student and Teacher

The Worcester Educational Development Foundation, Inc. (WEDF) is please to announce that the 2020 Dr. Lee Gurel Award for Teaching and Learning in Advanced Placement English has been awarded to student Lily Gandolfo of North High School and her teacher, Courtney Brousseau. Each year, the student honoree is chosen by lottery from the pool of WPS students who receive the highest score on the AP English exam.

Worcester Public Schools alumni Dr. Lee Gurel established this award in 2006 in honor of his 8th grade english teacher, Miss Wilmot, at Woodland Street Preparatory School. He donated an endowment for the award to thank the Worcester Public Schools for the educational foundation he received that prepared him to become a nationally recognized psychologist. Thanks to Dr. Gurel’s generosity, Ms. Brousseau and Ms Gandolfo both received $500.

WEDF Launches “Connected Kids” Campaign

 
Worcester Public Schools has identified Chromebooks as a primary need in the shift to remote learning during the global pandemic, and additional devices are needed.
 
 

Christina Chappell Joins WEDF as Advancement Associate

WEDF is proud to announce and welcome Christina Chappell as the organization’s Advancement Associate. Chappell will be responsible for supporting the work of the WPS Alumni Network, handling communications, and assisting with development.

Chappell holds a BA in English and Environmental Studies from Tufts University, and an MS in Environmental Education from Antioch University New England. Her career has always focused on education. She spent her early career in residential environmental education, and briefly taught in the Worcester Public Schools before becoming Manager of Education at the EcoTarium. After almost six years at the museum, Chappell is excited to help WEDF support the students and teachers of the Worcester Public Schools.

Mills Named Interim President

Dr. Stephen Mills, founder of the Worcester Educational Development Foundation, has been named interim president of the organization. 

Mills retired as Superintendent of the Acton-Boxboro Public Schools, was Deputy Superintendent of the Worcester Public Schools, and served on the Worcester School Committee. He is currently the director of the Center for Effective Instruction at Worcester State University.

Mills is a graduate of Burncoat High School, and his three adult children are Doherty alumni.

Pitcher Honored for Contributions to WEDF

Retiring WEDF president Stephen Pitcher was awarded the Dr. Stephen Mills Award for Advancing the Mission of the Worcester Educational Development Foundation at the June board meeting. 

Pitcher has been president of WEDF for the last seven years, bringing strong financial and non-profit management to the organization.

Steve is a graduate of North High School and resides in Worcester with his wife, Cindy. Steve and Cindy’s three adult children are Doherty alumni.

The board also elected Stephen Mills as Interim president of WEDF. Mills retired as Superintendent of the Acton-Boxboro Public Schools, was Deputy Superintendent of the Worcester Public Schools, and served on the Worcester School Committee. He is currently the director of the Center for Effective Instruction at Worcester State University.

Mills is a graduate of Burncoat High School, and his three adult children are also Doherty alumni.

Olivia Guerra Wins WEDF’s Gurel Award

The winner of the 2019 Dr. Lee Gurel Award is Olivia Guerra and her teacher, Catherine Doyle.

Ms. Guerra was picked by lottery from a pool of students who received the highest ranking score in Advanced Placement English. The cash award will assist Olivia with college related fees and expenses. 

Dr. Gurel endowed WEDF with funds to honor his Woodland Street Preparatory English teacher, Miss Wilmot.

Dr. Gurel is a Distinguished Alumnus of the Worcester Public Schools who enjoyed a long career as a research psychologist with the Veterans Administration. Dr. Gurel’s philosophy is that we all owe a debt to the teachers and institutions that equip us for fuller, more enriched lives.