An alumnus of St. Lawrence, Matt McCluskey returned to his alma mater in 2008 as the Coordinator of Academic Support. In this varied and engaging position, he provides general assistance and advice to the St. Lawrence student body, mentors and instructs students in the Higher Education Opportunity Program, plays a primary role in the University's early warning process, works extensively with the college's peer tutors, and teaches in the First Year Program. Through this work, Matt has been able to further long-time interests in reading and writing pedagogies, education, and the social sciences.
After graduating from SLU, Matt enrolled at Duke University, where he earned a master's degree in political science. At Duke, he furthered longtime interests in American politics and the history of political thought and developed a particular passion for land use policy and urban planning. During this same time period, Matt received extensive training as an Orton-Gillingham language tutor and has subsequently worked with students with dyslexia and ADHD in Maryland, North Carolina, Tennessee, and New York. Related to these experiences, Matt has taught such courses as America’s Suburban Landscape, Reading Political Philosophy, and Rural Dreams at St. Lawrence. He particularly enjoys providing hands-on learning experiences within these courses, including opportunities within the University and Village of Canton Archives, the GIS lab, and through photography-based projects. He is also a representative on the First Year Program Council, delights in serving as the university mentor for the men's soccer team, and has written on education issues for such publications as the Huffington Post and Adirondack Daily Enterprise.
One highlight among Matt's academic support duties is helping students develop the habits that will allow them to head off academic trouble in the short run and excel throughout their college careers. He meets regularly with students who are working on their note-taking, test preparation, communication, and time management skills or exploring their academic interests. He is especially interested in helping students to use active reading strategies and connecting them with engaged learning opportunities. He also works to build effective support systems around campus, including the provision of regular training for the University's peer tutors, teaching in the HEOP summer bridge program, and engaging with faculty and staff members across campus to address students concerns and promote robust learning outcomes. When he’s not at work, Matt can be found venturing out on photography excursions or playing soccer with his wife, Jennifer, and his son, Sean. He also enjoys reading extensively, including on such topics as the promise of rural entrepreneurship, the principles of New Urbanism and Smart Growth, promoting broad access to higher education----and the occasional spy novel.