by Susan Stone
Neena McBaer originally hails from Colorado, but she has relocated to the Hudson Valley and now lives in Poughkeepsie where she attended Vassar, recently graduating from the college with a bachelor’s degree in Educational Policy/Studies and a minor in Sociology. At Vassar, Neena developed her love for early childhood education – and her passion for programs that promote early literacy. As a student, she worked at the Wimpfheimer School in Poughkeepsie, with children ages 2 – 11. She was also a research assistant working closely with two professors in the Education and Sociology departments gathering, entering, and analyzing quantitative and qualitative data about youth club sports programs.
In 2016, Neena was a Vassar Ford Research Scholar serving as one of two primary ethnographic researchers on a project exploring special education in New York public schools. Back home in Colorado, Neena has been a reading intervention specialist at Lindamood-Bell Learning Processes in Denver.
“On behalf of the Pawling Library Board of Trustees, I would like to welcome Ms. Neena McBaer to the position of Children’s Programming Coordinator at the Pawling Library,” says Stephanie McLaughlin, President of the Library’s Board of Trustees. “Children’s programming is of the utmost importance to our library, and Ms. McBaer’s passion for childhood literacy makes her a good fit for this position. We are looking forward to getting to know her and discovering all that she will bring to our library and the families of Pawling.”
Brian Avery, Library Director, adds: “We are really excited to have Neena join our staff. We think the families of Pawling are going to love working with her because she has such a deep commitment to learning and an inviting natural warmth.”
Libraries have always been a special place for Neena. “When I was a child,” she says, “I would frequent our local library and voraciously read anything I could get my hands on. The same was true as I moved through school. I have always felt safe in libraries, and I appreciate the impact that they have on children’s learning and reading. I’m an educator by nature, and helping kids from a safe, beneficial setting, seemed like a wonderful fit for me.”
“Miss Neena” is looking forward to bringing her knowledge and expertise to the children of Pawling, and says with enthusiasm, “I predict I will greatly enjoy meeting the families who enroll in the children’s summer programming.”