Dana Tregilgas Johnson ‘68

  • What are you doing currently?
    • I graduated from Vis in 1968 when its name was “Convent of the Visitation.” I am now retired from teaching mathematics and education (middle school, high school, and college). In retirement, I have written a book, “Will This Be on the Test? What Your Professors Really Want You to Know About Succeeding in College,” that is intended to help high school students make a confident transition to college.
  • How has your experience at Visitation shaped your life?
    • Most of my teachers at Vis were Sisters. I learned not only great academic content, but also manners, kindness, confidence, work ethic, and expectation of high-quality work product. Learning to write well was a huge help to me for the rest of my life, both professionally and personally. My degrees are in mathematics and math education. For a while in the 90s, I worked for the Center for Gifted Education at the College of William and Mary doing curriculum development. I had no formal coursework in “gifted education” but I knew that Vis had given me a gifted education. When I found myself heading up a project to write a language arts curriculum, I told my boss, “My background is mathematics, not English. I don’t think I should be doing this.” She told me I had all the needed skills. “Really?” I thought. “Where did I get those skills?” Answer: Vis. At the end of the project, we put together an edited volume entitled, “Developing Verbal Talent: Ideas and Strategies for Teachers of Elementary and Middle School Students.” As one of the three editors, I was asked to write a dedication. You can see what I wrote below.
  • What would your advice be to current students at Vis?
    • Take as much math as you can! If you can do math, you can do anything!
    • There will always be stumbles in your personal and professional lives after high school. Use the confidence you build at Vis to know that you can recover, learn from the experience, and move forward successfully.

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