Mount St. Joseph University

Larissa Phillips ’12: Leading Literacy through Reading Science Program

Education, Education, Alumni

BY: Jessica Baltzersen

Larissa Phillips’ current role as a Reading Specialist at Forest Hills District has a heavy focus on leadership in literacy as well as teaching students that require additional and more intensive instruction in language arts.

After graduating from Mount St. Joseph University in 2004 with her Bachelor of Arts degree in Special Education, she returned in the fall of 2010 in the Reading Science program. By spring 2012 she earned her Master's Degree in Education with a Reading Endorsement.

Phillips has been at Forest Hills since completing her undergraduate degree in 2004. ”I heard about the new Reading Science program and knew it was exactly what I wanted and needed to further my knowledge and skills for teaching reading, advocating for students and families, and becoming a resource for teachers,” she says.

“I would say my biggest accomplishment after completing the graduate work, was that I felt empowered to not only revolutionize my own teaching and practices but spark curiosity in other teachers, becoming a resource for them,” says Phillips.

After completing her Master's degree, she began moving forward as a leader of literacy in her role as a Reading Specialist and member of the Building Leadership Team at Forest Hills School District in Anderson Township.  “The ten years that I spent as an Intervention Specialist and my work in the graduate program has completely prepared me for this role,” she says, “Although I am still learning daily, I am a savvy consumer of all there is to offer in the world of education, and investing time and effort in practices that promote student growth.”

“The Reading Science program fostered and ignited my passion for teaching reading, says Phillips, “I feel so incredibly blessed to teach children how to read.”

Learn more about the Mount’s Teacher Advancement Programs.