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New Graduate Program Coordinator in Deaf Education joins McDaniel

McDaniel College announces Jessica Willoughby as the new coordinator of the master’s degree program in Deaf Education at the college. Willoughby, a 2018 alumna of the college, also serves as a lecturer in the program.

McDaniel College announces Jessica Willoughby as the new coordinator of the master’s degree program in Deaf Education at the college.

McDaniel College announces Jessica Willoughby as the new coordinator of the master’s degree program in Deaf Education at the college.

McDaniel College announces Jessica Willoughby as the new coordinator of the master’s degree program in Deaf Education at the college. Willoughby, a 2018 alumna of the college, also serves as a lecturer in the program.

Willoughby has spent more than half a decade in education. Starting her teaching career in 2014, Willoughby taught at the Maryland School for the Deaf in Frederick, Md., and the Model Secondary School for the Deaf (MSSD) in Washington, D.C., prior to coming to McDaniel.

At the Maryland School for the Deaf, she used differentiated instruction and project-based learning to teach Deaf students as an English and digital American Sign Language (ASL) literature teacher. Willoughby also served as a performing arts teacher, where she emphasized understanding the process of ASL translation and assisted in developing the skills and talents in the theater program. Additionally, Willoughby constructed all-original unit plans as a multimedia teacher for a new course, Orioles News.

At MSSD, Willoughby served as a high school English teacher in 2016 before serving as the coordinator of instructional support on MSSD’s School Leadership Team two years later. As a teacher, she designed lesson plans to advance Deaf students’ critical thinking and literacy skills in English through reading and writing and American Sign Language through receptive and expressive as well as their abilities of creating historical connections – relating to literary movements and associating with social justice and cultural heritage. In Willoughby’s most recent role, she provided leadership for programs, projects, and schoolwide initiatives supporting student achievement within an ASL and English bilingual environment.

Willoughby graduated from Gallaudet University in Washington, D.C., with bachelor’s degrees in English and Theatre Arts in 2013. She also earned a master’s degree in Deaf Education from McDaniel College in 2018. She obtained the Maryland State Department of Education Certificate for secondary education in 2018 and the Praxis 1 Certification.

She is currently continuing her education by working on a School Management and Leadership Certificate from Harvard University’s Graduate School of Education and Harvard Business School. She is also seeking a doctorate degree in Educational Leadership and Management from Drexel University in Philadelphia.

Since its inception in 1967 as a joint effort between McDaniel College and the Maryland School for the Deaf, McDaniel’s master’s degree in Deaf Education has prepared teachers of Deaf students at either the elementary or secondary level. Graduates of the program are employed throughout the United States, Canada, and other countries, and include award-winning educators, including the 2011 National Teacher of the Year Michelle Shearer from Maryland and the 2018 New Jersey Teacher of the Year Amy Andersen, who was one of four finalists for National Teacher of the Year.

Learn more about Summer 2021 course registration