MEET OUR TEAM:
Mentoring and Guidance
Mike Cerkovnik, J.D.M.A. grew up just outside of Pittsburgh, PA and has a degree from Miami University (MA in Clinical Psychology), The Penn State/Dickinson School of Law (JD in Law), and Saint Vincent College (BS in Psychology). He has enjoyed 20 plus years of working at the intersection of education and psychology, as an independent school psychologist, as the director of psychological services for three schools in Vermont, and most recently, in independent school administration as a division head, headmaster and director of educational innovation & research. Mike, school clinical psychologist with teaching experience and various publications to his name, has worked at some of the nation's most prominent institutions. Throughout this work, he has imbued his passion for helping students/families use their imagination to design a better future for all.
Mike has a particular focus on psycho-educational testing and interpretation, attention deficit disorder/learning disabilities as well as social-emotional learning and counseling. He has a particular expertise in attachment therapy/reactive attachment and most child/adolescent clinical psychology issues. He enjoys career/college counseling and helping students enrich their lives with developing a growth mindset, along with an anticipatory skill set including self-assessment.
“Learning is more than the acquisition of the ability to think; it is the acquisition of many specialized abilities for thinking about a variety of things.” --- Lev Vygotsky
Mike’s passion is to provide guidance to families and schools while advocating for the “best interests” of the student. For example, reviewing IEP (Individual Education Plans) and 504 plans to provide clear understanding of the results and in developing action plans to help the student.
He has a particular focus within developmental psychology in attachment therapy and is a available to consult with families who have adoption support needs.
Mike chaired the year long professional development for teachers at a prestigious private school and offered several professional learning community offerings in reading development, intellectual character, ADHD/LD, Mindset (Carol Dweck) and Drive (Daniel Pink). Mike also does remarkable work emphasizing enrichment with the gifted learner community, challenging students in ways they're unlikely to be challenged elsewhere, engaging learners who are otherwise bored with the regular academic curriculum.
Mike also designs and leads a bevy of phenomenal after-school and summer institute options for students, public, independent, and home-schoolers alike. For example, “Mind, Brain and Education Science” and "Imagination: The 21st Century Skill."
College-essay writing and 1st-4th grade reading development are other important areas in which Mike specializes (and he is well-known for his penchant for engaging even the most reluctant middle- and high-school readers!).
"Be a good steward of your gifts. Protect your time. Feed your inner life. Avoid too much noise. Read good books, have good sentences in your ears. Be by yourself as often as you can. Walk. Take the phone off the hook. Work regular hours." --- Jane Kenyon, poet
Mentoring and Counseling
Kathy Bray grew up in the Washington, D.C. area. She is a graduate of Davidson College, and returned to the area twenty years ago as the Associate Dean of Admission and Financial Aid. She served in that role for five years and then as the Associate Dean of Students for the subsequent fifteen years. In addition to working individually with students, Kathy supervised the Director of Academic Access and Disability Services. As well, Kathy supervised the Student Health and Counseling Center, collaborating closely with the therapists to develop academic and personal strategies for students who found themselves struggling for many different reasons. In recognition of her commitment to students, she was awarded the Omicron Delta Kappa National Leadership Honor Society Staff Award.
Kathy’s experiences also include teaching high school French and working as a college counselor at an independent school in Atlanta.
Kathy currently serves on the Board of Trustees at Cannon School, and she served previously as a Board Member of Woodlawn School. She is currently enrolled in a full-time Master’s in Counseling Program and is working toward a specialty in Clinical Mental Health Counseling.
Kathy has a passion for working with high school and college students as they explore their options and plans.
One of her favorite quotes is from Parker Palmer’s book, Let Your Life Speak. “Before you tell your life what you intend to do with it, listen for what it intends to do with you. Before you tell your life what truths and values you have decided to live up to, let your life tell you what truths you embody, what values you represent.”