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Release Date: 
Wednesday, September 22, 2021

HFC welcomes Dr. Carolyn Casale to lead the Pre-Education program

Headshot of Dr. Carolyn Casale

Growing up on a street called School Road in Staten Island, NY was a great precursor to Dr. Carolyn Casale’s career choice.

“I’ve always wanted to be a teacher. I love teaching. I think it’s important that we inspire people to become teachers,” said Casale, the new HFC Pre-Education program Director.

Born in New York City, Casale is one of two siblings. She is truly a first-gen student: she is the first and only person in her family to graduate from college. She lived overseas for 13 years, as well as the West Coast. Casale recently moved to Plymouth, where she lives with her son, Semai, 10.

A 30-year veteran of the education field, Casale earned her bachelor’s degree in history and her certification to teach social studies at the secondary level from the City University of New York College of Staten Island. She earned her master’s degree in history from CUNY Brooklyn College. She earned the equivalent of an education specialist degree and her certification in educational administration from CUNY Hunter College.

Casale went on to earn her doctoral degree in teacher education from the Teachers College at Columbia University in New York City. She was a Fulbright Scholar at Addis Ababa University in Ethiopia, where she taught curriculum and instruction for two years.

A global teacher

Casale began her career teaching at the high school level for 13 years. She also taught overseas in Ethiopia, Korea, Guyana, and the Czech Republic. She was an educational consultant for the United States Agency for International Development (USAID), an independent agency of the U.S. government primarily responsible for administering civilian foreign aid and development assistance. In this capacity, she worked in Pakistan and Ethiopia before going into higher education.

Casale taught at Delta State University in Cleveland, MS for six years and Adams State University in Alamosa, CO for two years. While she enjoyed teaching at the university level, Casale wanted to work at a community college where the main focus is teaching. That is what brought her to HFC.

Desire to teach at a community college

“I always wanted to teach at a community college. I love teaching and I enjoy focusing on that,” she explained.

HFC ended up being just about a perfect fit for Casale.

“Dearborn is a semi-urban area just outside of Detroit,” she said. “This area has students I most enjoy working with – many are first-generation students or students looking for a second chance. Some are students with families of their own. I can relate to them and I hope to connect with them.”

Expanding the Pre-Education Program

As the Pre-Education program Director, Casale’s duties include networking and partnering with 4-year universities, as well as working with K-12 school districts in the area to place HFC students. She reports to Dr. Cynthia Scheuer, Associate Dean of the HFC School of Health and Human Services (HHS).

In addition to her duties as the Pre-Education Program Director, Casale is teaching the following classes this semester:

  • EDU 201: Introduction to Education
  • EDU 202: Introduction to Education Practicum
  • EDU 250: Humanities and Performing Arts for Educators

“I love teaching the introductory classes. They are where students find out if education is what they want to do for a living,” she said.

Casale’s top priority and long-term goal at HFC is growing the Pre-Education program.

“I would love to see program grow,” she said. “In addition, I want our students’ associate degrees from HFC to transfer seamlessly to wherever they seek to pursue their bachelor’s degree. I want to see a smooth transition to the next steps on their journey.”