C'reer Advisory Board
C’reer has been designed to help high school students with their career and higher education planning with input from the top school counselors, educators and administrators in the U.S. Our advisory panel has played an important role in helping test our vocational assessment and keep our focus on the issues they face every day when working with their students.
The first step towards college is answering the question: What do I want to be when I grow up?
High School of Fashion Industries
New York, New York
Vita Vaccaro has been in education for five years, initially at a teacher and now as the Coordinator of the Marketing and Merchandising Department at the High School of Fashion Industries. She is also runs that school’s Virtual Enterprise Program and various mentoring, internship and other marketing programs.
Prior to working in education, Vita worked four years in operations for Jones Apparel/Nine West and another four yearsfor Mana, an international cosmetic manufacturer .
Vita graduated from St. Joseph's College with a major in Human Relations and a minor in Business and an area of concentration in Education. She also holds a Masters in Special Education from Tuoro University, and she just completed a Masters in Administration through the College of St. Rose.
Freedom High School
Nancy has spent the majority of her career in education working primarily with high school students as a teach and counselor. For ten years she was actively involved with the California Scholarship Federation serving in a variety of roles including as President, Seymour Chair, Historian and Legislative Chair.
Since 1996 she’s worked at Freedom High School and has also worked as a counselor at Los Medanos Community College.
Nancy graduated with a Bachelor of Arts Degree in Human Development and Masters of Science Degree in Counseling.
Vice President, Strategic Relations
Aaron has a long-standing career helping organizations of all sizes achieve greater brand awareness and long-term market relevance. Doing so successfully has meant an acquired knack for connecting the dots between the right people, companies and opportunities.
As head of strategic relations for Vireo Labs, Aaron’s immediate area of responsibility is developing, organizing and managing the product advisory board. This is a group of high school counselors, administrators and higher education professionals whose input will be critical to the initial development of C’reer.
Aaron holds an MFA in screenwriting from the University of Southern California and is also the managing partner of Big Brand Theory, a brand and communication strategy firm based in northern California.
Florida SouthWestern Collegiate High School
Fort Myers, Florida
Amanda has over thirteen years of experience in K-12 education as a teacher, school counselor, and administrator.
After working in both private education abroad in West Africa and Latin America and public education in the United States, Amanda now works as a school counselor for Florida SouthWestern Collegiate High School, one of only two accredited STEM schools in the state of Florida. Florida SouthWestern uses an early college high school model that combines high school and college courses to maximize student motivation with college and career readiness.
Amanda holds a bachelors degree in Elementary Education from the University of Northern Iowa, a masters degree in Counseling from Drake University, and is currently finishing her doctorate in Interdisciplinary Leadership from Creighton University.
Albany High School
Michelle has been a school counselor for nine years at various schools in California. Her experience includes working in an urban high risk community, a rural beach community and a small urban, highly diverse, upper middle class community in the Bay Area where she is currently a counselor.
Most recently, she created a curriculum and implemented a four-year College Basics Intentional Guidance program dedicated to increasing college preparedness, application acceptance and career readiness for underrepresented students. The focus of the program is to expose the students to college, monitor their progress and provide targeted support throughout their 10th -12th grades.
Michelle is an active member of American School Counseling Association (ASCA) and holds an M.S. in counseling from San Diego State University.
Salvador Contes, Jr.
Assistant Principal, Technology
New Dorp High School
Staten Island, New York
Salvador Contes, Jr., is a passionate educator who focuses his efforts on empowering students and assisting them in unleashing their academic prowess. He prides himself on the ability to meet the needs of youth in the K-12 environment and to inspire them to achieve above and beyond their abilities. Sal holds a Bachelor of Science in Occupational Education from New York City College of Technology (CUNY) and a Master of Science in Education Administration from City College of New York (CUNY). He is currently working on completing his Doctorate in Computing from Pace University.
Ponchatoula High School
Denise has been a counselor for 10 years at Ponchatoula High School following six years there as a teacher. While employed as a teacher, Denise was instrumental in implementing the First Responder and Pharmacy Tech Program.
Since becoming a counselor, Denise has coordinated dual enrollment, hosted career days and college fairs, developed an after school ACT prep class, organized school-wide college field trips and college application nights, introduced a job fair for the graduating class, and regularly holds parent workshops.
Prior to Ponchatoula High School, Denise was a teacher at Independence High School in Independence, Louisiana. She is a National Certified School Counselor and holds an M.Ed from Southeastern Louisiana University.
Business and Computer Science Teacher
Corey Powell has ten years of teaching experience and is currently a Business and Computer science teacher at the STEM Academy in Savannah, GA. Corey focuses on teaching his students career readiness while using technology to facilitate job embedded learning.
A part-time Instructional Designer, Corey is also the author of the curriculum that led to the Savannah STEM Academy becoming the first STEM certified middle school in Georgia. The school and curriculum were also nationally recognized with the 2016 STEM Excellence Award.
Corey began his teaching career in Atlanta and has been at the STEM Academy for the last two years. He has a Master’s Degree in Teaching and an Education Specialist degree in Instructional Technology.