- After School Program
- RYS Staff
- History of RYS
- Youth Resources
Beth Bannister - Beth Bannister currently is the Joint Youth Commission (JYC) Program Manager. She previously held the position of the Enfield Youth Program manager for over 6 years. Before that she worked as a Primitive Pursuits Instructor in Dryden and at GIAC, as well as working at Camp Earth Connections, the Community Nursery School and the BJM After School Program. Beth enjoys sharing her passions for nature, photography and community involvement with youth in Enfield. Her early Primitives Instructors were the woods, fields, farms and waters in Western NY, along with the cool adults who brought her there. She has also taken classes at Tom Brown's Wilderness School, learned tracking with Sue Morse and Paul Rezendes and studied the Art of Mentoring and Kamana with Jon Young at the Wilderness Awareness School. Along with all things outdoors, Beth especially likes birds and the songs they share. Following this passion Beth also works with Lang Elliott, a renowned wildlife recording artist.
Penny Boynton - bio will arrive shortly. :-)
Kat Clement - Currenlty holds the position of the Groton Middle School Program Manager.
Ian Creelman - Currently holds the position of the Lansing Middle School Program Manager.
Monica Dykeman - (10 years with RYS). After studying biology and elementary education at LeMoyne College, Monica spent several years teaching second grade at a rural North Carolina elementary school. She was awarded the NC Power grant three times during her tenure and was appointed to the LearnNC technology program. Upon returning to NY, Monica joined the Rural Youth Services Program in Groton (GYS). In her time at Groton, Monica has expanded the school year programs at the elementary school and developed a summer camp which approximately 100 local youth attend yearly. Monica currently lives in Groton with her husband and two young daughters and enjoys being part of such a close knit community.
David Hall - Dave has been working with Rural Youth Services since 1998, serving the Town of Dryden. The majority of Dave's programs are nature based with an emphasis on getting kids outside, building confidence along with nurturing social skills. Dave founded Primitive Pursuits in his first year with RYS, quickly recognizing the special impact that this program had on participants. This program has now grown well beyond Dryden to become not only one of the largest programs out of Cornell Cooperative Extension but one of the largest wilderness education programs in the Northeast. Dave continually try's new programs in order to keep things exciting and fresh often saying "if I get bored, it's my own fault". Dave loves giving youth the opportunity to try new things and make connections with their peers as well as the natural world. Dave has been working with youth as well as adults since 1990 working for such places as the Adirondack Mountain Club, Cornell Outdoor Education, Ithaca College Adventure Recreation Degree Program, SUNY Cortland, Rune Hill Earth Awareness Center, Manice Education Center, Fairview Lake Environmental Education Center, Lime Hollow Center for Environment and Culture as well as Boy Scout and Girl Scout groups.
Nancy Irish - (7 years with RYS). As a student at Cornell, Nancy fell in love with the Fingerlakes area and decided to make it her home. She worked at Cornell's Vet.School until she decided to stay home with her first child, Jenna. Two years later, Eric and Allie were born giving her two more reasons to be at home. As the children grew and reached school age, Nancy started a small business organizing marketing functions and helping resident's transitions to a local life care community. As her children grew, Nancy was involved in many activities in the school, community and church and spent a large amount of time organizing youth activities. When it was time for a career change, she was looking for something that would allow her to continue to work with youth providing positive opportunities for their growth and development. RYS was the perfect fit! Nancy is constantly pursuing her goal of providing interesting and positive activities in the Trumansburg area for middle school youth involving many local residents willing to share their talents and skills.
Dawn Kleeschulte - High School Helpers, LYS 7 years. Dawn moved to the Ithaca area in 1982, fell in love with the waterfalls (and her husband) and never left. Although her formal education includes a BA in English from Ithaca College and a Masters in Arts and Teaching English degree from SUNY Binghamton, Dawn has an eclectic employment history that includes work as a bank teller, landscaper, adult education teacher, and water aerobics instructor, in addition to teaching MS and HS English for which she was trained. She loves her current position matching youths with suitable employment situations in Lansing because she genuinely enjoys the variety of people with whom she works and the creativity, freedom, and flexibility of the job. In addition to employing the youths of Lansing, Dawn is a passionate runner, biker, gardener, and feeder of people and birds. She loves any activity that requires being outdoors, including hanging laundry.
Nikki Nease - Currently holds the position of Program Manager for the Dryden OURS Program held at 4H Acres.
Carissa Man Parlato - (10 years with RYS). Carissa's interest in people led her to a Bachelors degree in Psychology, with minors in Human Services and French. After graduation she left the cold winters behind and road-tripped out to California to see what all the fuss was about. She spent several years there, and after working for a jewelry designer, was eager to resume working with young people. Carissa headed back east in 2000 and was hired by Rural Youth Services later that year. One of her professional goals is to be a positive influence in a young person's life, and introduce youth to new opportunities and experiences that they may not normally have access to. In Carissa's spare time you might find her dancing, dressing up in crazy wigs, baking cakes, playing cards, hiking, or writing chapters for her memoir.
Linda Schoffel - Young people have been a major focus for Linda since she was one herself awhile back. She loved growing up in the country outside of Ithaca. As a teen, she enjoyed babysitting and working at local summer camps. In college she earned her degree from Syracuse in Elementary Education and then taught at the elementary level in New Jersey and New York. She soon realized that her passion was less academic and more with helping to guide young people in trying new things and discovering their own talents and passions. She found ways to do this through Girl Scout leadership of both girls and adults, many years as the Trumansburg After School Program Director, serving on the Trumansburg Community Nursery School Board and as the RYS Coordinator for the past seven years. Helping to shape the RYS program and providing daily guidance to the "awesome RYS Staff" has been a dream job for Linda. "It's a privilege to be a part of such a powerful program where we are making a difference in the lives of our local young people!" Linda and husband Rob recently returned to country living and are loving it, especially the daily sunrises over the lake.
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Last updated: January 11th 2013 - 4:26pm