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New Faculty Stand Ready to Mentor and Guide Our Saints

New Faculty Stand Ready to Mentor and Guide Our Saints
Jim Norman

When students returned to campus for the 2023-24 school year, they no doubt noticed some new faces on campus. A number of talented teachers are primed to make tremendous contributions to the hilltop.

“I am very excited to welcome our newest faculty members to the Canterbury community. Working with a new group of colleagues is always exciting and this year is no exception,” said Associate Head of School for Academics Suzanne Roberts P ’24, ’27. “This cohort represents impressive educational backgrounds and an incredible amount of experience in public and private schools in addition to secondary and higher education.”

Introducing our new faculty… 

Emmanuel Chinyumba, Assistant Director of Admission
Manny has spent much of his college life and professional career supporting diversity and inclusion initiatives. He served as a legal clerk for the Judicial Branch (State of Connecticut) and trial clerk for Criminal Superior Court and recently taught at the Flatbush Ascend Charter School. Manny was also a Research Associate for the Global Poverty Research Lab at Northwestern University's Kellogg School of Management. He is living in Sheehan House. 

Trevor Fanning, Director, D’Amour Center for Faith, Service & Justice/Theology Teacher
Trevor returns to the hilltop after having served on the faculty in 2004-2005. His impressive background in diversity and service immersion work includes 20+ years in locales such as Haiti, Ecuador, and Lourdes. Trevor has also held positions at Fairfield College Preparatory School in Connecticut, Roncalli and Cathedral High Schools in Indiana, and the Holton-Arms School in Bethesda, Maryland. He lives in Sheehan House.

Sydney Feeney, Diversity, Equity, Inclusion, and Justice Dean/Theology Teacher
Sydney joins Canterbury after serving as a DEI Specialist at Quinnipiac University School of Medicine. She was also Assistant Director of Diversity, Inclusion, and Belonging at Wentworth Institute of Technology in Boston and advised the National Pan-Hellenic Council, which focused on community awareness and action through educational, economic, and cultural service activities. She is living in the apartment in the Advancement building on Circle Drive.

Amy Franklin, English Teacher
Amy will serve as Head Coach for Girls’ Varsity Soccer in addition to teaching. Originally from the United Kingdom, Amy began working there as a Teaching Assistant at St. Thomas C.O.E Primary School. She was also a Writing Center Tutor at Bergen Community College in Paramus, New Jersey; taught in a Kindergarten classroom in Ludenhausen, Germany; and completed her student teaching practicum at two Pennsylvania schools. She lives in Havemeyer House.

Noah Gichan, Theology Teacher/English Teacher
Noah returns to Canterbury for his second stint as a faculty member and Head Coach of Boys’ Varsity Squash. He also coaches Boys’ JV Tennis. He has served as Apprentice Teacher at Woodstock Day School in Saugerties, New York, and Ramapo For Children in Rhinebeck, New York, and worked as a Litigation Paralegal at Mayer Brown LLP in New York City. While attending Bard College, Noah was a standout member of the Men’s Squash team. He lives in Sheehan House.

Peter Gintoli, Academic Counselor, Donovan Center for Learning
Peter spent four years as a Business Analyst at Connecticut Distributors. He has also held a variety of positions related to ice hockey—Head Coach at Elite Hockey, Lead Skills Instructor for IPH Hockey, BCHL New England Scout, and Director of Hockey Operations for Yale University’s Men's Hockey program. Peter and his wife, Senior Associate Director of Admission Molly Gintoli, live in Carmody House with their son Jack. 

Ashley Hassiak, Spanish Teacher
Originally from New Milford, Connecticut, Ashley comes home to Canterbury with a wealth of experience. She was a Talent Recruiter, Traveling Counselor, and Spanish Translator while a student at Central Methodist University in Missouri; Admission Counselor at the College of Westchester in White Plains, New York; and talent recruiter at Madison Davis in Tarrytown, New York. She most recently worked at Schaghticoke Middle School in New Milford supporting grades 6–8, specifically first- and second-year Spanish students. Ashley resides off campus. 

Father Brendan Horan, S.J., Resident Chaplain
Connecticut native Fr. Horan comes to Canterbury as Resident Chaplain after having taught political science at Fordham University and serving as one of two pre-law advisors for undergraduates in arts and sciences. He is an integral part of Campus Ministry on the hilltop and teaches courses in Theology and Honors Constitutional Law. Fr. Horan has advanced degrees in philosophy, theology, education, and law. He previously taught at Loyola University Chicago and Boston College and was a member of the founding faculty at the first Jesuit school in Nigeria—Loyola College—where he was a Theology Teacher and Dean of Students. Fr. Horan lives in the Chaplain’s Residence on campus.

Ahmed Hussein, Math Teacher
Ahmed is no stranger to the boarding school environment, having arrived in the United States as an international student from Somalia attending Worcester Academy in Massachusetts. He has taught English and Math to more than 100 underprivileged students at Hajji Muse Igarre High School in a rural area of Somaliland, as well as secondary level STEM courses at Higher Ground Secondary Academy and math at Sylvan Learning Center, both in St. Paul, Minnesota. Ahmed lives in Carmody House.

Brendan Kennedy, Math Teacher
Brendan’s extensive experience includes working as an Equities Trading Intern at Trillium Management in New York City and a Data Science Intern at Curiosity Stream in Silver Spring, Maryland. While attending Fordham Preparatory School in the Bronx, New York, he taught and mentored middle school students at nearby St. Ignatius School. He also spent time as a Senior Counselor and Assistant Director at Camp Montserrat in Lake Placid, New York. He is living in Sheehan House.

Greta Massey, Assistant Director of Admission
With a passion for non-profits, health and exercise, and education, Greta worked as an Assistant Program Director and Senior Program Director at Harlem Lacrosse, as Director of Junior Tennis at East Chop Tennis Club on Martha’s Vineyard, and as a Ski Instructor at Vail Resorts in Park City, Utah. While attending St. Lawrence University in upstate New York, she completed a semester abroad in London as a Marketing and Public Relations Intern at the Totally Thames Festival. Greta lives in Hickory Hearth.

Isabel Polletta, History Teacher
In addition to her teaching duties, Isabel works in the Donovan Center for Learning Writing Lab and is a coach in the Crew program. Previously, she taught Social Studies and coached Crew at Rhinebeck High School in New York and served as a Certified International Baccalaureate History Teacher at Brooklyn Prospect Charter School in New York City. She lives in Sheehan House.

Andrea Ramirez, Spanish Teacher
Andrea comes to Canterbury with significant classroom experience as a Spanish Teacher at Lorain High School in Lorain, Ohio, and, most recently, Kenston High School in Bainbridge, Ohio. During her undergraduate college years at Kent State University, Andrea attended La Universidad de Salamanca, where she earned a Diploma of Hispanic Studies. She and her husband, Canterbury Math Teacher Christian Ramirez, live in Havemeyer House with their son Michael and daughter Emilia.

Christian Ramirez, Math Teacher
Christian is an experienced mathematics/STEM educator, having previously served as a Math and Computer Science Teacher, Dorm Head, and Coach at Andrews Osborne Academy in Willoughby, Ohio, and at Grand River Academy in Austinburg, Ohio. He was also an accountant at Pepco and a customer service rep at Discover. Christian also coaches Boys’ JV Soccer at Canterbury. He and his wife, Canterbury Spanish Teacher Andrea Ramirez, live in Havemeyer House with their son Michael and daughter Emilia.

Christopher Rich, Co-Director of Theater/Music Teacher
Christopher is now a full-time faculty member after working part-time at Canterbury since 2014. He was previously Founder and Director of the All For Arts Performing Arts Centers in New York’s Bedford Hills and Smithtown and in West Haven, Connecticut. His 30-plus years as a performance/vocal coach and piano instructor include roles as director, music director, writer, composer, and performer. Christopher has worked at local schools and community organizations such as Stamford schools, The Klein, Trinity Catholic High School, and Wooster School. Chris lives off campus.

Edward Smith, History Teacher
As a graduate of Choate Rosemary Hall, Ted is no stranger to boarding school life. He has worked for Bank of America as a Portfolio Manager, Goldman Sachs as a Proprietary Derivatives Trader, and the State of Rhode Island as the Chief State Bank Examiner, among others. He also taught at The School of the Holy Child in Rye, New York; The Russian School of Mathematics; Berkeley College; and the University of Connecticut. At Canterbury, Ted helps coach Squash in addition to his teaching duties. He lives on campus in Hickory Hearth.