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NOVA-Manassas welcomes new faculty

Six people joined the faculty at the Manassas Campus of Northern Virginia Community College at the start of the fall 2012 semester.

Sarah Gunnarson, assistant professor of psychology, holds a doctorate in industrial and organizational psychology from the University of Maryland at College Park and a bachelor’s degree in psychology from the University of Virginia. She has one semester of teaching experience at NOVA and two years at the University of Maryland. She has also served as a consultant to GEICO and the Department of the Navy. She lives in Fairfax Station with her husband, Dave, and their two sons, 17-year-old Jacob and 15-year-old Peter.

Jonathan Harvey, assistant professor of English, earned a doctorate from West Virginia University, master’s degree from Marymount University and bachelor’s degree from Towson University. He brings teaching experience from Harford (Md.) Community College, West Virginia University and the University of Maryland, Baltimore County. Harvey lives in Abingdon, Md., with his wife, Mandy, and their newborn son, Lennon. They plan to move closer to the campus soon.

Health and physical education instructor Nicole Mancini is already familiar with the Manassas Campus, having taught there for two years as an adjunct. She also taught for Prince William County Public Schools for seven years. She earned a master’s degree at West Virginia University and a bachelor’s degree from Central Michigan University. Mancini lives in Gainesville with her husband, Adam, and their two daughters, 4-year-old Suzanna and 1-year-old Brinley.

Economics instructor Maryellen Ryan was an adjunct at NOVA’s Loudoun Campus for six years before accepting a full-time job at the Manassas Campus. While living in New York, she gained 11 years of teaching experience at Mercy College in Dobbs Ferry and Westchester Community College in Valhalla. She also served as an economist at the American Paper Institute in New York where her duties included building economic models to forecast domestic business activity. She earned bachelor’s and master’s degrees from Fordham University’s Rosehill Campus. Ryan and her husband, John, live in Ashburn. Their children, Christine and Andrew, both graduated from Virginia Tech.  

Alias Smith, assistant professor of biotechnology and biology, holds a doctorate from the University of California in Los Angeles and a bachelor’s degree from the University of Missouri in Columbia. Before joining the faculty at NOVA, he taught at National University for two years. Smith lives in Arlington.

Teacher education instructor Ashley Wilkins brings experience as a first grade teacher for Prince William County Public Schools and a kindergarten teacher for Greenville County Schools in South Carolina. She has served as a mentor and provided professional development instruction to new teachers in Prince William County. She earned a master’s degree in curriculum and instruction from the University of Phoenix and a bachelor’s degree in early childhood education from Clemson University. Wilkins lives in Haymarket with her husband, Philip.

Northern Virginia Community College is the largest institution of higher education in the Commonwealth of Virginia and one of America's largest community colleges. NOVA enrolls more than 75,000 students at its six campuses in Alexandria, Annandale, Loudoun, Manassas, Springfield and Woodbridge, and through the Extended Learning Institute. For more information about NOVA and its programs or services, call 703-323-3000 or visit the College's Web site, www.nvcc.edu.