Alumni Spotlight

  • Mark Constable - MHS '69

    Posted by Methacton School District on 9/15/2022

    mark constable

    Mark Constable's first connection to "Methacton" goes back more than sixty years. It began one day in 1960 when he and his father explored numerous concrete footers that had been poured near the high point area where Germantown Pike and Kriebel Mill Road meet. Officially, that location was the joint secondary school construction site for Lower Providence and Worcester Townships. The footers were the foundation for what would become “Methacton Junior-Senior High School”, and it was the beginning of Mark's long history of experiences with and for Methacton.

    Mark said he still remembers the day during the 1960-61 school year when his Worcester Elementary School Principal, John Scholl, interrupted classes to make a special announcement over the school's PA system: “The results from community voters have been tabulated and the name of the new high school will be Methacton spelled M-E-T-H-A-C-T-O-N...a Native American word which means 'an evil or difficult to climb hill'. The school mascot will be a warrior and the school colors will be Dartmouth Green and white.”

    Methacton's first graduating class was the class of 1964. Mark noted that year (the 1963-64 school year) brought about several other firsts for Methacton as well. He said, “Being built as a school for grades 7 through 12, it was the first year we actually had students who were in 7th through 12th grades. The football team won their first game ever. It was the first year that there was a senior prom and it was the first year Methacton had an official yearbook. It was also the first year that my classmates (MHS Class of 69) attended Methacton.”

     
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    While at Methacton, Mark was on the football, basketball and track and field teams. He was also a member of student council and class congress. He enjoyed serving on prom and banquet committees along with his participation in the Varsity M Club and the Track and Field Club. He noted how the first generation of Methacton teachers supported student activities and events. “The faculty members really supported student activities and our sports teams. They served as our coaches, sponsors and chaperones. They also attended performances and competitions to support our efforts and to let us know they cared.”

    Many faculty members also participated during pep rallies and special events. “I can still see Mr. Bill Forsyth (biology) and Mr. Charlie Wisner (math) during a pep rally each leading their side of the gymnasium while trying to out cheer the other side. Faculty members would also dress up in funny outfits during faculty-student competitions and during the faculty follies assembly."

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    Mark said that he benefited greatly while being a student during Methacton's first generation. “Methacton was a brand-new, well-equipped school when we attended. I later learned from Mr. Vincent Farina (former Supervising Principal and Superintendent) how the faculty was put together to staff the new high school. There was a lot of thought and planning that went into the selection process. I really appreciated what Mr. Farina did for Methacton. I can also say that he had a positive influence on my experiences as a student, as an athlete, and as an educator at Methacton.”

    After graduating from Methacton, Mark attended Bloomsburg University where he was a member of the Husky Football and Track and Field teams. He served as a member of the Student/Faculty Senate and the Inter-fraternity Council. He was also a Resident Advisor for men and a Fraternity House Manager. He majored in Social Sciences and graduated with a Bachelor of Science Degree in Education in 1973.

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    Mark returned to Methacton in 1973 to teach fourth grade at Audubon Elementary School. He also coached football at the high school. He became Methacton School District’s first Professional Development Coordinator in 1984. His role primarily included providing needs-based staff development opportunities and follow-up support for Methacton educators. He also created Methacton's continuing professional development plans and assessed progress. Mark recalled how beneficial it was for him to also be able to observe and learn from others while he was in his professional development role. Interestingly, at times, he was tasked with providing professional development for educators who had once taught him when he was in school at Methacton.

     
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    Mark returned to teaching in the regular classroom during the 2001-2002 school year when he joined the Explorers Team to teach 6th grade Geography at Arcola. He enjoyed the opportunity to apply much of what he had learned and observed as a staff developer. He also realized how much he missed teaching and coaching the “kids”. Mark retired from teaching in 2008. He continued to coach the Methacton Track and Field team until 2013.
     
     
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    Mark credits Methacton's first generation of teachers, along with his father (Joe Constable) and his uncle (Richard Constable), for helping to drive his love for teaching, coaching and professional development.

     
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    Those who know Mark would not only say what an outstanding individual he is, but how passionate he is about all things Methacton. Mark has been actively involved in many influential roles at Methacton. He was a student, an athlete, a teacher, a coach, a mentor, a role model and a professional development coordinator. He has also been a member of the Methacton Schoolmen's Club since 1973, serving many years as the club's president and treasurer.
     
     
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    In 2009, Mark helped to establish what has become the Methacton Education Foundation. He served as the Foundation president for six years. He continues to support the foundation. Over the years, he has also been involved with many Methacton Alumni activities, including reunions, homecoming events, the 50th anniversary graduation walks, tours, alumni and friends golf outings and more.
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    Today, you can often find Mark in the press box, on the field or in the gym during Methacton events. He enjoys spending time and riding bikes with his wife of 47 years, Nancy. He also enjoys reconnecting with former Methacton classmates, alumni and colleagues.
     
    Although Mark retired from Methacton as an employee in 2008, he has never retired from his unofficial role as “Mr. Methacton”.

     

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  • Kevin Kochka MHS '06

    Posted by Methacton School District on 5/26/2022

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    The breadth of accomplishments and occupations of our Methacton graduates is astounding. This month we not only share the success of another graduate with you, but emphasize our appreciation for what he has done in helping to protect and serve others.

    Kevin Kochka is a 2006 graduate of Methacton High School and currently serves as a Community Services Officer as well as Public Information Officer with the Pennsylvania State Police. Kevin attended Lock Haven University, where he walked on to the baseball team as a three-year starter and graduated with a degree in Criminal Justice. Having seen his career develop over the years from a Correctional Officer to a West Chester Borough Police Dispatcher and through his appointment to the State Police Academy in 2015, Kevin has always served to protect others.

    It’s no secret that Methacton has a strong history of having great teachers. Kevin shared that Jamie Sabella Gravinese had the greatest impact on him. “She continued to be invested not only in my education before and after having her class, but […] invested her time in my family's life. She listened to me when I needed to vent, she consistently followed up with me to ensure [that] I continued to succeed, and for those reasons, I will be forever grateful and still continue to stay in touch with her to this day.” Kevin praised all of Methacton’s teachers for being strong educators who prepare students for their future endeavors.

    Playing baseball and golf as a Warrior was another highlight of Kevin’s high school career. He received the Schoolman's Award for overall character and contributions to the community as a senior. He also received the Coach's Award for best all-around work ethic and attitude and was the recipient of the Lions Club Award.

    In terms of advice for current students, Kevin suggests the following mantra: “Tough times don't last, but tough people do". He uses this quote regularly and believes it serves as a reminder that “whatever you are going through, WE will get you through it TOGETHER.”

    Kevin resides in West Grove with his wife, two daughters and dog Beau and enjoys golf and slow pitch softball among spending time with his family.

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  • Karen Pflug-felder - MHS ' 67

    Posted by Methacton School District on 4/29/2022

    karen pflug-felder

    Karen Pflug-felder is a 1967 graduate of Methacton High School and taught at her alma mater from 1972-2005. Karen attended Dickinson College for undergrad and obtained her Master’s degree in education from Arcadia University (then known as Beaver College).  She was one of the founding members of the Methacton Education Foundation and served as Board secretary. Karen has amassed outstanding achievements during her career. She was inducted into the Dickinson College Sports Hall of Fame and was nominated for Who's Who Among America's Teachers. She was also the first recipient of the Warrior Legacy Award.

    Karen has very positive memories of her time as a Methacton student. “Some of my best friends were made at Methacton and we still remain friends after 50 plus years.” She was very involved in extra-curricular activities and sports. She enjoyed playing field hockey, basketball and lacrosse and being part of Student Council and Student Congress. Academically, Karen was a star student, having graduated third in her class. She also shined as an athlete, receiving the WNAR Sports award and an award for Most Outstanding Female Athlete. While all of Karen’s teachers helped prepare her for college, she credits former Methacton teachers Bill Forsyth and Janet Geatens as her greatest influences.  “Their excellent teaching encouraged me to major in and teach biology.”

    Karen shares that some of her very best memories of Methacton are from her days of teaching. “I can truly say that I enjoyed every day I spent in the classroom.” She taught biology, A.P. biology, applied science, and environmental science and was Department Chair from 1982 until 2005. After school, Karen coached girl’s basketball, girl’s softball and girl’s lacrosse. She also sponsored the Classes of 1975, 1989 and 1996.

    Karen had this to say in terms of advice for current students: “Take your high school education seriously, but also have fun!”

    Karen is keeping busy in her retirement and still enjoys sports, hiking, bicycling, golfing, and coaching an adult softball league.

    We salute Karen Pflug-felder as an alumni who continues to make us Methacton PROUD.

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  • Karthik Yegnesh – MHS ‘18

    Posted by Methacton School District on 3/30/2022 6:00:00 PM

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    Karthik Yegnesh is grateful to be a part of the Methacton community. It served as the foundation that allowed him to achieve tremendous success in the subject of S.T.E.M. (Science, Technology, Engineering and Math) long before earning his diploma at Methacton High School in 2018. Karthik won first place in the mathematics category at the prestigious Intel International Science and Engineering Fair (ISEF) during his junior year. His award winning submission was titled, “The Homotopy Theory of Parametrized Objects”.

    Additionally, Karthik was among 80 of the world’s most accomplished high school students to earn a spot at MIT’s Research Science Institute (RSI). RSI is a summer science and engineering program that combines on-campus course work in scientific theory with off-campus work in science and technology research.

    Methacton High School science teacher, Mr. Helm, is credited with fostering opportunities for Karthik and his fellow classmates. “Mr. Helm’s work clearly supports the scientific research community and encourages students to be involved”.

    Karthik’s S.T.E.M ambitions have only grown stronger as he studies Applied Math and Economics at Harvard College. The senior spent this past summer as an intern with Bridgewater Associates, one of the world’s largest hedge funds. He also published a paper that focuses on applying pure mathematics to understanding network science.

    Karthik suggests that current Methacton students should always find ways to challenge themselves. “Take risks. Don't be afraid to put a lot of time into things you are passionate about, even if it's different from what other people are doing.”

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  • Matthew Michaels - MHS '11

    Posted by Methacton School District on 2/25/2022 6:00:00 PM

    Matt Michaels

    Our next alumni spotlight features a Temple Owl that you may have heard on the radio.

    Matthew Michaels has been queuing up some of Philly’s Relaxing Hits as a Digital Program Director for iHeartMedia/iHeartRadio. It is a career that requires him to wear many hats – with responsibilities on air and behind the scenes. He relishes the challenge that comes with his work. Matthew earned this opportunity shortly after graduating with a Bachelor’s Degree in Media Studies and Production at Temple University.

    “I was able to be on morning radio just a year out of college!” For the past five years, Matthew has had his own on air slot. You can hear him on 106.1 The Breeze on Sunday nights from 7p-12a.

    Before radio became his passion, Matthew’s high school experience focused on building great relationships with friends and teachers. One teacher who had a profound impact on his career as a student was his English teacher, Ms. Meanix. Matthew took her class as a freshman and as a senior. He remembers enjoying her style of teaching. Another teacher who had a great influence on Matthew was his father, Bryan Michaels, who taught in the Methacton School District for more than 20 years.

    In terms of experiences, the Class of 2011 graduate admittedly wishes that he had been involved in more of the available extra-curricular opportunities.

    “It's okay to get involved in activities and clubs, but even if you're not, I wouldn't worry about it. There's always time to branch out more in college”.

    There is one activity that Matthew is glad he didn’t miss out on – Post Prom. He remembers it being a ton of fun.

    “I was always amazed at the work that went into the Post Prom by volunteers and staff – they made it such a great time for everyone.”

    Although he graduated a decade ago, Matthew believes the following advice will serve us well at any age. “Always stay true to yourself, be humble, and always be willing to learn more.”

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  • Bill Covaleski - MHS '81

    Posted by Methacton School District on 11/22/2021

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    Bill Covaleski is the Co-Founder and Brewmaster of Victory Brewing Company in Downingtown, Chester County. Long before Bill’s business became a household name and giant in the global craft beer industry, he was a Methacton High School student who played ice hockey and even earned the title of ‘Most Artistic’ in the Class of 1981 yearbook. Bill recalls his high school experience as being one of great fulfillment.

    “My favorite Methacton memory was graduation as the day was full of promise for the future. I believe that my friends and I felt that we were exiting high school well-prepared for exciting futures of our own choosing.”

    Bill went on to graduate Magna Cum Laude from Temple University’s Tyler of School of Art & Architecture with a Bachelor of Fine Arts degree. He also earned a certificate for Brewing Studies at the Doemens Institute in Munich, Germany.

    He points to his Methacton art teacher, Pam Johnson, as the educator who had the most influence on his life as a student.

    “There are two reasons why I feel she made a great impact on my future. First, she taught a thorough range of materials, methods and techniques so that a young artist was exposed to many channels for their creative expression to flow into. Additionally, she also made time to convey the less tangible aspects of art by offering historical context and inspiring concepts. As an example of this second point, she once made the statement 'the mind is like a compost pile so expect to dig deep for the richest material.' That has always resonated with me in my pursuit of solutions and directly in my business.”

    Bill and his business partner, Ron Barchet, were best friends through their high school years. The pair used that time together to inspire and challenge one another to work harder.

    “We often selected differing classes and compared notes on what we were learning and experiencing. A short thirteen years after graduating we found ourselves writing our business plan for a brewery as we had both gathered diverse experience that one another could benefit from in a business mode. Our strength was that of a team, not as two isolated individuals.”

     

    bill and ronBill (left) and business partner Ron Barchet in 1995 when brewing equipment was delivered to Downingtown, PA location.

    Today -- their teamwork is paying dividends as evidenced by the success of Victory Brewing Company. Just last year, Bill and Ron were inducted into the Chester County Business Hall of Fame. The award recognizes an individual’s outstanding achievements and contributions within the local business community. They are also recipients of the Clayton M. Hoff Award from the Brandywine Valley Association for their environmental stewardship.

    Bill currently serves as a board member with the Chester County Agricultural Land Preservation, the Chester County Conference and Visitors Bureau, and Downingtown Main Street Association. He has also served as the Chairman of the Pennsylvania Restaurant & Lodging Association and as President of the Brewers of Pennsylvania.

    Bill and his family

    When he’s not leading Victory Brewing Company’s marketing team, Bill enjoys traveling with his family.

    We salute Bill Covaleski as an alumni who continues to make us Methacton PROUD!

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  • JP Hussey - Class of 2001 & Beth Ann Bittner Mazza - Class of 1984

    Posted by Methacton School District on 10/29/2021

    JP Hussey

    As a proud and successful business owner of The Hussey Team-Mortgage Advisors in Conshohocken, Joseph “JP” Hussey, a 2001 Methacton graduate recalls his school experience fondly. JP participated on the varsity baseball, basketball, and golf teams and was recognized by his peers senior year as Best Dressed and Best Personality.

    After graduating from West Chester University with a degree in Professional Services, JP kicked off a successful career in mortgage banking. His dream of owning his own mortgage brokerage became a reality in February of 2019 when he opened The Hussey Team – Mortgage Advisors. “I have always wanted to pave my own way and I was able to do this by opening up my own company with my own brand.”

    JP’s advice to our current students: “BELIEVE in yourself first, BALANCE out the good and the bad, and then REMEMBER to consistently do these things over and over.  Don't overlook the CLICHE sayings and meanings in life.  They are there for a reason.  Don't be a mean person, because it will come back to you.”

    Having grown up in Methacton, JP still resides in the community and is proud to have all three of his children attend Methacton School District. He and his wife, Rachael, are excited for what the future will bring.

    Beth Ann Bittner Mazza

    Our alumni spotlight for October 2021 also shines on Beth Ann Bittner Mazza from the Class of 1984. Beth Ann says she has so many wonderful memories of the Methacton School District, but being part of the MHS Swim Team is at the top of her list. “We had a great team!  We were Suburban I League Champs in 1980-81.”

    Beth Ann recalls taking advantage of activities and athletic opportunities available for students to pursue. Not only was she a varsity athlete on the swimming and track and field teams, she also participated in Class Congress, Theater and Drama, Ski Club, and Key Club. Beth Ann encourages all Methacton students to take the time to get involved, make friends, and enjoy all the little moments.

    During her time as a student, several teachers had a profound effect on Beth Ann. One teacher who stands out in her mind is her Kindergarten teacher. Miss Moyer noticed that Beth Ann had a hearing deficit and made recommendations to her mother for getting help. She remembers History teacher, Ms. Barb Clipsham, for her strength as a woman and passion for athletics. Mr. John Menichello inspired Beth Ann’s love for writing and English and nurtured her confidence in public speaking.  She remembers Coach George Marinkov for his courage to be different and Russian Communism class.  She fondly remembers track coach, Mr. Mann, and swimming coach, Mr. Coble, for their commitment to Methacton’s athletic programs. 

    Beth Ann’s post-secondary career may have led her to Delaware County Community College, Cabrini University and Villanova University, but she always came back home to the Methacton community.

    Two years ago, Beth Ann started her own company with Best Version Media. She is the publisher of Lower Providence Living – a hyper-local magazine that focuses on the Lower Providence Township community.

    Beth Ann believes in giving back and remains a committed advocate of the Methacton community through volunteering. "I am a firm believer that you need to be the change you want to see in the world."  

    Beth Ann is currently a board member for the Methacton Education Foundation, serves as President of the Lower Providence Business Association, Vice-Chairman of the Lower Providence Parks and Recreation Board, President of the Lower Providence Optimist Club and is an active member of the local Youth Aid Panel for the Montgomery County District Attorney's Office and the Montgomery County Critical Incident Stress Management Team.

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  • Miriah Rutledge - Class of 2009

    Posted by Methacton School District on 9/24/2021

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    As a 2009 graduate of Methacton High School, Miriah Rutledge had her aspirations set on a career in teaching as she pursued an English Education degree from Penn State University. Miriah recalls being shy and uncertain about her academic abilities during her high school years. However, she credits her AP English teacher, Ms. Welsh -- who also served as the Theater Director at the time -- with providing Miriah with the self-confidence and belief in herself to be successful. Miriah said that Ms. Welsh provided perspectives that took into consideration the attention to life’s many moral and ethical considerations.

    “Ms. Welsh had the compassionate ability to demand high-quality work in a supportive way. She saw me, believed in me, and inspired me to be a better person.”

    Miriah also has a fond appreciation for how involved parents, teachers, school administration, and our community were in creating such a positive Methacton experience, especially around Post Prom time. “Methacton was where I started to learn my purpose and I feel grateful for that,” she said.

    Having been the first in her family to graduate from college, Miriah most recently decided to pursue a career in counseling after earning a Master of Arts in Marriage and Family Therapy from La Salle University. She is now a successful entrepreneur who serves as a licensed Marriage and Family Therapist at her private practice Choosing Change Counseling in King of Prussia.

    “I've been particularly proud of my work with providing pro bono and reduced rate services to individuals and families in need during the pandemic.”

    She is looking forward to expanding her business with upcoming events in the community and at her practice this Fall.

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  • Michelle Konkoly - Class of 2010

    Posted by Methacton School District on 8/26/2021

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    Our inaugural inductee into the Superintendent’s Alumni Spotlight is Michelle Konkoly.

    Michelle is a 2010 graduate of Methacton High School, and currently a first-year Resident Doctor at DuPont Children's Hospital. This two-time High School All-American in Swimming, Swim Team Captain, and National High School Honor Society inductee credits Methacton AP Biology teacher Jeremy Walton for igniting her love of Biology. Michelle credits Methacton teacher and Swim Coach Ben Yoder for teaching her how to compete, which ultimately led to swimming at Georgetown University and later becoming a member of the Team USA Paralympic Team. When asked what advice she has for students at Methacton, Michelle says she encourages students take advantage of the many curricular and extra-curricular opportunities that Methacton offers such as our various competitive sports teams, AP classes, clubs, technical school, theater, and music.

    Having competed in the 2016 Rio Paralympic Games for Team USA and winning four medals (two Gold, one Silver and one Bronze), she now finds herself in the national spotlight once again – as a commentator for NBC in the Tokyo Paralympic Games, beginning on August 24, 2021. While we will celebrate as we get to see an alum featured on a national stage, I am certain that we will continue to see many great things from Michelle Konkoly as she pursues her career in medicine.

    To learn more about our alumni, join Methacton Alumni & Friends today: https://www.methactonalumni.org

    To be featured in our Alumni Spotlight series, complete the interest form here.

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