dsc02877-copy-2Director of Parent Education, Marissa Nadjarian, M.Ed.

As a native Angeleno, I am honored to be a part of A Magic Penny’s leadership team to help families experience philanthropy and strengthen our Los Angeles community through service. I have strong memories of being motivated to serve the community as early as first grade, which continued through college while I obtained a degree in Psychology and Education from the University of California, Berkeley.

As I began my teaching career and worked towards my Master’s Degree in Education from Pepperdine University, I discovered service learning- a powerful teaching methodology that connects curriculum and real-world issues through student-driven research and social action. During my career as an elementary educator at The John Thomas Dye School, I became the Co-Director of Service Learning. I loved helping youth find their voice for issues that concerned them. My favorite teaching moments came from watching students become their own advocates- informing their peers, teachers, and parents about issues at stake in their community. Now as a Service Learning Consultant, I work with educators to further develop social action curriculum, which includes program development, curriculum resources and workshops for organizations such as The Museum of Tolerance Tools for Tolerance® program in Los Angeles and The Educators Consortium for Service Learning, where I serve as the Director of Programs and Outreach.

All these experiences have fueled my new parenting passion to introduce volunteerism as a core family value. I founded Philanthroparent.com in 2014 as a resource for like-minded parents who strive to integrate service, philanthropy and social consciousness into their children’s lives. Focusing on helping others find family-friendly ways to serve their communities brought me to A Magic Penny because I am dedicated to working with organizations who value youth’s contributions to our societal challenges. In my role as Parent Education Advisor, I look forward to helping families navigate their service journey: providing resources and strategies to help your child uncover the purpose and value of your service experiences together. A Magic Penny is a tremendous way for parents to raise change makers who can ignite social change, and I look forward to giving my own daughter this opportunity. We can’t wait to meet fellow A Magic Penny families and serve together!