By Samantha Vega-Torres – Features Editor
Undergraduate commencement speaker Gabby Bertoldi did not know Lasell University existed until a university representative came to visit her school. One tour around the campus later, and the senior early childhood education major became a Laser.
Bertoldi is finishing up student teaching at the Haley Pilot School in Roslindale, Massachusetts. The school is an all-inclusion school where general education and special education students are taught in the same classroom.
“I think Gabby’s biggest asset is her ability and desire to think deeply about the work that she does. She’s incredibly thoughtful and reflective about her own teaching,” said Associate Professor of Education Amy Maynard.
While Bertoldi appreciates professors that cheer her on, such as Maynard, Bertoldi witnessed the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic during her practicum last year.
“I wasn’t sure if I wanted to be a teacher anymore. Teaching in a post-pandemic school has just been absolutely crazy. I do love the field of education, but I would love to do something more creative,” said Bertoldi.
Bertoldi has put much of her creative energy toward Lasell Community Television (LCTV). Her time at the station has given her a strong media and video-editing skill set that she hopes to take with her.
“I would love to do an education podcast. I really love creativity and art and things like that and I would like to mesh that with my education degree” said Bertoldi.
She co-hosts “The Stew,” a lifestyle and pop-culture show with her roommate, senior fashion merchandising major Kaitlyn Duarte. The duo met during their sophomore year, but it was during junior year that their friendship grew.
“It’s been so much fun creating “The Stew” together. It’s something that we bond over and something that we take a lot of pride in. I’m so happy that we carried through with what started out as a silly, random idea,” said Duarte.
Many of Bertoldi’s ideas initially started as a joke. Her laidback and carefree energy inspires those around her. “She lights up any room she walks into, and people naturally gravitate towards her,” said Duarte.
Whether reading tarot cards with Duarte or learning from Maynard, she is grateful for her various Lasell connections. With the upcoming graduation, Bertoldi is focusing on herself and what she wants to do next.
“I feel like a lot of people feel this pressure to jump into something, and I feel like I’m doing something wrong because I’m not lining up teaching jobs, but I think it’s good to recollect before jumping into something,” said Bertoldi.
Bertoldi does hope to end up teaching Kindergarten, but for now, is considering pursuing a visual arts degree. She believes in a balance between creativity and career.
“She has what it takes to be a teacher because she thinks about the students first,” said Maynard. “The job of a teacher in elementary school can be very overwhelming and Gabby appreciates that in her heart and as she matures as a teacher she will handle that and it will make her an incredible asset to any school of what she is a part.”
Bertoldi has shined in her time at Lasell, making a heartfelt impact on those around her. Important advice from Bertoldi would be to stay true to oneself while exploring new things and giving everything a fair shot, even if it’s a joke.