The Learning Enrichment Center (LEC), located in the library, is a space for students to continue the thinking, learning, and planning that occurs in their classrooms. The experienced specialists in the LEC provide additional instruction that extends the work our teachers do in class in order to meet each student’s unique learning needs. At no extra cost, students are able to seek assistance and feedback on their assignments with one-on-one tutoring. Students may request tutoring before and after school, during their study hall, and during lunch.
Caroline Becker (B.A. English, Trinity University, M.A.T. Secondary Education, Trinity University) is the Director of the St. Thomas Learning Enrichment Center. She started her career in education in HISD, and has several years of experience as a teacher, English department chair, curriculum writer, and instructional coach.
Mitchell G. Dowalgo, CSB (B.A., St. John Fisher College, M.Div., University of St. Michael’s College, M.A., University of Notre Dame, plus post graduate studies at several universities) is a Basilian priest who joined the faculty in 2015. He teaches Spanish I and works with individuals in the Learning Center. Prior teaching assignments include: Assumption College School in Windsor, Ontario, Andrean High School in Merriville IN and the Aquinas Institute in Rochester NY. Fr. Mitch has extensive experience in university ministry serving at The University of Alberta, St. John Fisher College, and New Mexico State University where he was pastor.
Laura Speck (B.A. English with Special Honors, University of Texas-Austin; graduate studies in Education, Rice University) began teaching at St. Thomas in 2012. In order to support STH students as they develop as writers, she draws on her experience as a writing consultant at the Undergraduate Writing Center while attending the University of Texas at Austin. Her graduate education at Rice University focused on Reading and Writing methodology in the High School classroom.
Andrea Spiering (B.A. Biochemistry and English, Rice University; Ph.D. Biochemistry, LSU- Baton Rouge) is a graduate of St. Agnes Academy. Andrea joined the St. Thomas in 2018 as the Science Specialist in the LEC. Andrea has worn many hats – academic biochemist, chief scientist at several biotech firms, substitute teacher at local private schools and science teacher at local private schools. Additionally, she has tutored Chemistry and Biology.
Clint Matthews (B.S. Mechanical Engineering, Texas A&M University) has taught in public and private schools in the U.S. and for brief stints internationally. He lived 7 years at Still Creek Ranch, a ministry for youth from broken homes, and was involved with the start of its school. He taught at Houston ISD for several years, gaining certification in all levels of math, grades 6-12, then also acquiring certification to teach all high school science classes. He has travelled to at least 16 countries, teaching or speaking publically in many of them, and has enjoyed starting three successful businesses.
Beth Breuer(B.S., University of Texas at Austin) has been teaching at St. Thomas since 1997, and she teaches Algebra II and Algebra III and regular calculus. She has done graduate hours at Rice through RUSMP, is a certified calculus teacher and has attended the NMSI workshops.
Katherine Vasquez (BFA in Painting, Baylor University; MFA in Painting, Houston Baptist University) is the Testing Center Assistant. She began her career as a High School Art Teacher in HISD and took a few years away from education before working at St. Thomas. In her spare time, she enjoys making art, reading, gardening, and spending time with her adorable dog Hero.