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Two Generations of Cambridge College Alumni Success

Marta and Angel Rosa
Marta T. Rosa (MEd ’86) and her son, Angel Rosa (MM ‘06)

Marta T. Rosa (MEd ’86) and her son, Angel Rosa (MM ‘06), both experienced the power of a Cambridge College education early in their careers, and it has made all the difference in their later success.

Marta came to the College as a young working mom, already equipped with considerable education and work experience but needing an advanced degree to reach the non-profit leadership positions she had as her goal. Working full-time for A Kangaroo’s Pouch, Inc. in Chelsea, one of the state’s first bilingual early education centers, she took evening and weekend classes for three years and earned her MEd in 1986. She credits Professor Emeritus John Grassi, who led the pre-Master’s program for adult learners and founded the NITE program, with supporting her on the road to success during her time at the College.

“My program of study at Cambridge College formalized what I had been doing in my work and learning in bits and pieces at other institutions of higher education," explained Marta. "Theory and practice came together for me during the interaction in my classes and, together with my hard work, gave me greater self-confidence, sharper skills, more clarity of purpose, and a stronger sense of my value as a professional. I credit Cambridge College with not only supporting my learning but more importantly with helping my career soar.”

Not long after getting her MEd, Marta went to work for the state Department of Social Services (now Department of Children & Families), where she helped develop and implement child care policies and early education programs across the state. Her passion for public policy led her into political office, becoming the first Latino to win election in the City of Chelsea as a member of the Chelsea School Committee and later serving on the Chelsea City Council.

In 1990, she was asked to lead the Child Care Resource Center, Inc. in Cambridge, where she more than tripled the organization’s size and budget before departing in 2004 to start her consulting practice and join Wheelock College. Marta served as Chief Diversity Officer and Senior Executive Director for Government, External Affairs & Community Impact at Wheelock for more than a decade before stepping down to resume her consulting practice.

Marta remains passionate about the value of her Cambridge College experience and recently agreed to join the President’s Council, an advisory body for the Office of the President, observing at her first meeting: “There is no other place like Cambridge College and more people need to recognize its value to the region and to the members of our community. If you graduated from the College, you should tell your friends and family about its impact; they may be struggling to formalize their skills and learning, just as you may have been before enrolling, and no other college works as well for adult learners as Cambridge College.”

That was certainly the case for Marta’s son Angel Rosa, who came to the College as a young man already employed full-time in a well-paying job and not sure he had the time to pursue another degree. The College’s flexible programs soon convinced him he could both keep working and continue his education and professional growth: “I could be in class in the evening and apply the knowledge and skills I had learned the next day in my job.”

Angel credits SOM Senior Professor Donna Maimes with transforming the way he approached not just his program of study but the way he thought, executed and delivered in his job. He says of his time at the College, “Donna’s mentoring changed me as a professional, and I learned to be an innovator and an entrepreneur at Cambridge College. Before coming there, I had a job I went to everyday and collected a pay check. After going there, I had a clear path to a bigger career and a greater focus on achieving results-driven execution and transformative leadership at the senior levels of organizations.”

Today, Angel is a Vice President at AthenaHealth and knows he may never have taken this career path without Cambridge College. “I’ve told a lot of people about the College, especially those who need a place that will help them with balancing priorities. Not everyone can afford to drop their career and go to school full time, which is why institutions like Cambridge College are so vital.”