Staff Directory

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Jennifer Knapp Beudert

Manager

Jennifer.L.KnappBeudert.1@nd.edu

As Manager of the Robinson Community Learning Center (RCLC), Jennifer Knapp Beudert has responsibility for directing the operations of the RCLC in accordance with its goals of “hospitality, education, partnership, civic engagement, and sustainability.” This includes oversight of program development, supervision of staff and volunteers, general administration, facilities management, and fundraising. Jen is also responsible for managing the RCLC’s community and University educational partnerships, and coordinating the RCLC AmeriCorps program.


Jen arrived at the University after 13 years in Oregon, where she served as a faculty member at Linn-Benton Community College. In this position, Jen was Director of the Periwinkle Child Development Center, the lab school for the Education, Child and Family Studies Department, as well as co-director of the Early Education Partnership, a professional development program for early childhood educators funded by a Federal Early Childhood Education Professional Development grant with the goal of improving educational outcomes for at-risk children.


A native New Yorker, Jen holds two master’s degrees from Bank Street College of Education in NYC, one in early childhood/elementary education and one in educational leadership. She received her bachelor’s degree in psychology and political science from Swarthmore College (PA). 

 

 

 

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Andy Kostielney

Assistant Manager

Kostielney.1@nd.edu

Andy provides administrative and organizational support for the Center and its staff.  He is charged with managing the RCLC website and program data.

Andy is also responsible for scheduling the use of various rooms in the facility to outside organizations, as well as ensuring the Center’s trademark spirit of hospitality is upheld.

Andy just started his 14th year at the RCLC.  He is a lifelong resident of the area, graduating from Notre Dame more years ago than he cares to remember, and his favorite pastimes are the Chicago Cubs, ND athletics, and giving grief to Ms. Marguerite.

 

Michael Boyd

Michael Web

Advanced Skills & Entrepreneurship Program Director

mboyd5@nd.edu


Michael provides vision, instruction, and opportunities to the Youth Entrepreneurship Program. Michael is responsible for overseeing programming for high school and middle school students to expand academic capacity and personal development. The concentrated focus of his program is entrepreneurship and creative problem solving.  Through practical, hands-on experiences, the staff and mentors give the students a wide variety of marketable skills, including problem solving, public speaking, and an entrepreneurial mindset.
 
Michael is homegrown, born and raised in South Bend, Indiana.  Michael’s life goal is to make a lasting and positive contribution to this world by always listening first, and just smiling.  Michael believes that joy is the fuel within the heart that set fire to passion and dreams. 
 

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Ellen Kyes

Take Ten Program Director

kyes.1@nd.edu

Ellen Kyes directs the Take Ten program, reaching local schools and community sites, as well as those at a distance.  She recruits and trains college students to serve in the local program, works with schools and community sites in the South Bend area to bring Take Ten to local youth and adults, and expands Take Ten’s outreach beyond the local community.  
 
Ellen works with students and adults with a local, regional, national, and international scope, sharing presentations at schools, community locations, and many conferences.  She also teaches a Notre Dame seminar on youth and violence issues as well as an adult course in nonviolent communication at Bethel College.  Ellen and the Take Ten Team serve students and adults to help them understand the inevitability of conflict and the skills to resolve it well.
 

 

Velshonna Luckey

Velshonna Luckey

Youth Development Program Director

vluckey@nd.edu

Velshonna oversees after-school tutoring and enrichment programs for students in 1st through 12th grades. These programs help students develop their literacy skills, study habits, and plans for future success.  After-school enrichment activities include arts and crafts, college preparation, and trips to colleges and historical monuments around the country, broadening students’ worldview and ability to dream.  
 
Velshonna, a native of Detroit, Michigan, joined the University of Notre Dame in 2002, where she first worked for the TRiO Upward Bound Program.  In 2006, she joined the RCLC. Velshonna's community impact has received numerous awards, including the 2011 Presidential Values Award from the University of Notre Dame and the 2014 Indiana Torchbearer Award.
 

 

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Christy Burgess

Shakespeare Outreach Director

christyburgess@nd.edu

Christy Burgess attended the University of Alaska Fairbanks and received her M.A. in Drama and Theatre Education from the University of Warwick. Before moving to South Bend, Christy worked at the Fairbanks Shakespeare Theatre as their Education Manager and had the pleasure of traveling to parts of rural Alaska where she led Shakespeare workshops with youths and Alaska Native Elders.  In 2011, Christy was fortunate to be a North American Teaching Consultant for the Royal Shakespeare Company.

In the summer, Christy is the Notre Dame Shakespeare Festival’s ShakeScenes Coordinating Director.  Favorite directing credits include The Tempest, The Merchant of Venice, Macbeth, and Richard III.

 

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Jennifer Wittenbrink Ortega

Literacy Programs Director

wittenbrink.1@nd.edu

Jennifer studied humanities, math, and science at Northwestern University, and received her Master of Education from the Erikson Institute in Chicago.  She currently runs the Literacy Programs, including the English as a New Language Preschool, LitCorps tutoring, and the After School Programs at the Notre Dame Center for Arts & Culture.  

 

Kris Arizmendi

Kris Arizmendi

Talk With Your Baby Coordinator

Volunteer Coordinator

Community Base Learning Coordinator

arizmendi.1@nd.edu

Kris is the coordinator for the Talk With Your Baby program, which is a multi-organizational program in South Bend. She is also responsible for recruiting and coordinating student volunteers at the Center, and helps oversee the after school tutoring program.

 

Lu Ella Webster

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Adult Programs Coordinator

lwebste1@nd.edu

LuElla is responsible for adult programming at the Center after serving as a three year member of the AmeriCorps program.

LuElla is a lifelong resident of the Northeast Neighborhood who and she serves on Northeast Neighborhood Council, Inc., Campus Community Advisory Coalition, the Kelly Park Renovation Project, and the Northeast Neighborhood Crime Committee.   

 

Marguerite Taylor

marguerite

Community Liaison

mtaylor43@juno.com

Marguerite represents the RCLC on a number of community boards and organizations, making sure the best interests of the Center, as well as the entire Northeast Neighborhood are considered.  Margurite serves on the Northeast Neighborhood Council, the Northeast Neighborhood Revitilization Origanization, the South Bend Heritage Foundation, and the United Religious Communities, to name a few.