Merissa is very excited to be part of the Central Synagogue team! Originally from Rockland County, New York, Merissa has lived and worked in Boston, Massachusetts for the last 10 years. She is thrilled to be moving back to the Big Apple. Growing up, Merissa attended Reuben Gittelman Hebrew Day School in New City, New York, and attended Young Judaea camps Sprout Lake and Tel Yehuda where her love for Judaism blossomed. Merissa graduated from Binghamton University in 2007 with a Bachelors of Science in Human Development, and later earned a Masters degree in Psychology and a CAGS in School Psychology from Northeastern University in 2010. While in graduate school and during her early career, Merissa worked as a religious school teacher, USY advisor, and Family Education administrator at Temple Emanuel in Newton, MA. Additionally, she piloted an all-girls self-esteem and Jewish identity program called, “Rosh Hodesh: It’s a Girl Thing! for pre-teens at Temple Emanuel. Since 2011, Merissa has served as the School Psychologist at Andrews Middle School in Medford, MA. Merissa comes to Central with years of experience working with children and families, as well as supporting and providing professional development for teachers and staff.
As Director of Elementary Engagement for the LCLJ, Merissa will work closely with her fellow members of the Youth and Family Engagement Department. In this position, she hopes to inspire the children and families of Central to embrace Jewish learning and make it a part of their everyday lives. Merissa will oversee programming, staffing, communication, and student recruitment for the LCLJ in partnership with the Director of Teen Engagement, and will serve as the primary point person for LCLJ parents and students in grades K-6. Merissa enjoys spending time with friends and family, rooting for the Red Sox, listening to live music, and exploring New York City.