Shannon Mersand is a Professionally Licensed School Media Specialist in New York State. She is also certified in English Language Arts 7-12. She has worked in the education field for 10 years, and prior to that as a public librarian and in journalism.
Mersand attended Dutchess Community College, where she received a Music Performance Certificate before she discovered her desire to be a part of the education universe. She later attended the University at Albany, State University of New York where she received her Bachelor of Arts in Information Science and Policy with minors in English and Education Studies in 2003, as well as her Masters of Library Science, with a concentration in School Media in 2004 and a Masters of Curriculum Development and Instructional Technology in 2009. In 2014 she will earn her Certificate of Advanced Study in eLearning and Online Teaching from the University of Wisconsin, Stout.
Everyday, when Shannon Mersand walks in to work as a School Media Specialist, her ultimate goal is to inspire learners to work harder and achieve more than they ever imagined they could. By learners, she does not just mean the 1300 teenagers in the building, she also means the teachers, the certified teaching assistants, the clerical staff, and the administration at the building and district levels. Her recent journey to obtain a Certificate of Advanced Study in Online Teaching and Learning has renewed her passion for teaching online, and has brought with it the desire to teach at the College and University level, inspiring future educators and librarians to reach for the stars, no matter the circumstance.
Passionately is the most accurate word to describe how Mersand approaches everything. Be it the implementation of a new technology initiative, the creation of a new unit of study, or finding the right book for any reader. She takes on seemingly insurmountable tasks, and works hard to make them a reality. Her particular strengths are in Instructional Technology (classroom application of tools, Google Apps for EDU, eLearning, and mobile learning), Young Adult Services (building programming, readers advisory, Young Adult Literature and educational theory), and Curriculum and Instructional Design.
Mersand brings with her a variety of experience in both the education and library profession. She began her career at Philmont Public Library, a small rural library, where she served as Director for two years, moving the library to a new location, and building programs for children, teens and senior citizens. She then moved into education as a School Media Specialist at New Lebanon Jr/Sr High School, where she was a member of the district Technology Committee, planned and implemented two Superintendent’s Conference Days focused on technology and its implementation in the classroom, served as webmaster for the district webpage and taught multiple technology related workshops. During her time at New Lebanon Mersand also served as a liaison to the Questar III BOCES School Library System and was a key member of a committee to develop a Regional Information Literacy Skills Curriculum for the Questar III BOCES, which she presented in March 2007 at the Capital Area School Development Association Librarians and Administrators Conference.
Mersand later moved to Pawling High School, where she served as a Tenured School Media Specialist, was a member of the district Technology Committee, and was frequently called on to teach a wide variety of technology related professional development in the district on Superintendent’s Conference Days, after school, and during the summer. Mersand actively collaborated with classroom teachers on projects that incorporated both information literacy skills instruction and technology. She also developed and taught an online course which blended information literacy skills with contemporary literature which prepared students for rigorous college level research. During her time at Pawling High School, she was also involved in a number of initiatives of the Mid Hudson BOCES Consortium, including the TELL (Technology Enhancing Literacy Learning) conference in 2008 and 2009. In 2010, Mersand participated in their e3 (Electronic Enhance Environments) project, where she was a co-lead author of a completely online research skills course that blended information literacy skills with social studies and historical fiction. In November 2011, Shannon was named the Lee Bryant Outstanding Teacher of the Year by NYSCATE. In 2012, she became Individually Qualified in Google Apps for Education.
Mersand currently serves as a School Media Specialist at Yorktown High School. In Yorktown, she is a member of the District Technology Committee, and the Chair of the Building Technology Committee. She works closely with teachers on a regular basis to incorporate instructional technology into their curriculum, and formed and chairs the Bring Your Own Technology Committee in the High School. Mersand also serves as the Site Coordinator for the PNW BOCES OC21 program, which connects teachers and students in various member schools in online classrooms. She has also worked with a number of teachers to develop blended and online learning opportunities within the building, and provide technology training to faculty and staff on a variety of technology topic, including training the faculty and staff in Google Apps for Education.
Learning and teaching about technology tools is a passion Mersand can't seem to shake. She has presented a number of topics at local, regional and state level conferences, including New York State Association for Computing and Technology in Education, and the New York Library Association Section of School Libraries Spring Conference. Mersand has also designed and teaches 9 online courses for Creative Teacher Education Institute, 8 related to technology, and 1 designed to incorporate Literature outside of the English classroom. More information about the conferences and events Mersand has participated in can be found on her Professional Development Portfolio or in her resume.
In 2014 Mersand began work with Intel Teachers Engage, writing a blog on the Common Core Standards and Technology for Intel Teacher’s Engage, and began writing product reviews for Tech & Learning Magazine. She was named an Authorized Google Education Trainer in August, 2014.
Mersand has an avid interest in the areas of technology in education and online learning. She is a self proclaimed lifelong learner, and does not shy away from the opportunity for a challenge. She continues to pursue new knowledge by participating in a number of professional development opportunities.