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Professional Staff

the barbara and patrick roche center for catholic education

picture of Weitzel - O'Neill

Patricia Weitzel-O'Neill, Ph.D.
Executive Director 

Patricia Weitzel-O'Neill joined the Roche Center for Catholic Education the summer of 2010 after serving as Superintendent of Schools for the Archdiocese of Washington and the Vice President for Academic Affairs at Trinity Washington University in Washington, DC.

As the Executive Director of the Roche Center, she is responsible for the oversight and management of Center personnel, professional development for leadership teams in Catholic education, advocacy work, and facilitating applied research on behalf of the Lynch School of Education and the Catholic school community, both locally and nationally.  Currently, Dr. Weitzel-O’Neill is continuing her partnership with Loyola University Chicago and the National Catholic Educational Association (NCEA) as they advance and support the implementation of the National Standards and Benchmarks for Catholic Elementary and Secondary Schools.  An advocate for Catholic schools, she presents frequently at conferences and serves on various boards and councils and is on the Editorial Board for the Journal of Catholic School Studies, Australian Catholic University.

As Superintendent of Schools for the Archdiocese of Washington, Dr. Weitzel-O'Neill was responsible for 29,000 students in 96 early learning, elementary, and secondary schools. During her eight-year tenure, she was credited with strengthening school academic programs, introducing a standards-based curriculum, and enhancing professional development standards. In addition, she was instrumental in the efforts to secure the DC Opportunity Scholarship Program, a federal initiative that enabled thousands of low-income children to attend parochial schools.

Prior to serving as superintendent, Dr. Weitzel-O'Neill worked with Trinity Washington University as Vice President of Academic Affairs, Dean of the College of Arts and Sciences, and an associate professor of sociology. She is a graduate of Wheeling Jesuit University and holds an M.A. and a Ph.D. in sociology from St. Louis University.
Email: patricia.weitzel-oneill@bc.edu

Charles Cownie

Charles Cownie
Director, Urban Catholic Teacher Corps

Charlie joined the Roche Center for Catholic Education in 2012 as the Director of the Urban Catholic Teacher Corps of Boston College (UCTC). Prior to arriving at Boston College, Charlie was an Associate Director of Campus Ministry at Loyola Marymount University in Los Angeles.  Previously, he was also a member of the Educational Partners in Catholic Schools Program (EPICS) at Seton Hall University, which provided him the opportunity to teach in a Catholic high school in New Jersey while also earning an M.Ed.  Charlie graduated with a B.A. from Santa Clara University and also received a J.D. from Loyola Law School.
Email: charles.cownie@bc.edu

Derek Hoy

Derek Hoy
Office Administrator

Derek joined the Roche Center for Catholic Education in the fall of 2013 and supports center operations and finance, as well as general research and programmatic initiatives.  Derek is completing a dual-degree M.A./MBA in the Higher Education Administration Catholic University Leadership program in the Lynch School of Education and the Carroll School of Management.  Prior to arriving at Boston College, Derek worked internationally in Catholic higher education and served for two years on an inaugural team that established a branch campus for St. John’s University (New York) in Paris, France. Derek received a B.S. in business management from St. John’s University in 2008.
Email: derek.hoy@bc.edu

Kristin Melley

Kristin Melley
Associate Director, Professional Development

Kristin joined the Roche Center for Catholic Education in the fall of 2011 as an Associate Director focusing on professional development and brings 13 years of education experience, as both a classroom teacher and administrator, to her position. For six years she served as the director of a national center for Catholic schools and students. She is passionate about serving the mission of Catholic schools and empowering Catholic school leaders to excel in the many roles they hold. Kristin holds a B.A. from Wheaton College in Norton, MA and an M.A. in theology from Harvard University.
Email: kristin.melley@bc.edu

Dr. Martin Scanlan

Martin Scanlan, Ph.D.
Visiting Associate Professor

Martin joined the Lynch School of Education in the fall of 2013 as a visiting associate professor assigned to the Roche Center for Catholic Education.  He works on the Two-Way Immersion Network for Catholic Schools (TWIN-CS) and has been a member of the faculty design team since the inception of the initiative.  He comes to the Roche Center as an assistant professor with the School of Education at Marquette University.  Dr. Scanlan received an undergraduate degree from the Catholic University of America, an M.A. in elementary education from Trinity College (Washington D.C.) and his Ph.D. in Educational Leadership and Policy Analysis from the University of Wisconsin, Madison.
Email: martin.scanlan@bc.edu

Meghan Scheffler

Meghan Scheffler
Program, Events, and Media Administrator

Meghan has been with the Roche Center for Catholic Education since June of 2007. Meghan coordinates and plans all Roche Center events and conferences and also manages all of the Center's media outlets.  She has led several educational programs for the Roche Center, including the Stand Up, Speak Out student leadership conference for Catholic middle school students. Meghan previously worked with the Urban Catholic Teacher Corps (UCTC) for five years, where she worked with many principals from the Archdiocese of Boston and also mentored and supported the UCTC teachers. Meghan graduated with a B.A. in History from Boston College.
Email: meghan.scheffler@bc.edu

Jenny Small

Jenny L. Small, Ph.D.
Research Coordinator

Jenny joined the Roche Center for Catholic Education in the spring of 2012.  Jenny holds a Ph.D. from the Center for the Study of Higher and Postsecondary Education at the University of Michigan, an M.A. from Teachers College, Columbia University, and a B.A. from Brandeis University. Her research has focused on the spiritual lives of religiously diverse college students and how students use language to define their identities. Her first book, entitled Understanding College Students’ Spiritual Identities: Varied Faiths, Different Worldviews, is available from Hampton Press. She currently serves as the Chair of he ACPA Commission for Spirituality, Faith, Religion, and Meaning.
Email: jenny.small@bc.edu