Christine Rinella - Owner/Director Christine is a graduate of SUNY Cobleskill with a degree in Early Childhood Education. She opened the PUMPKIN PATCH Nursery School in Cohoes, New York in January, 1975. Seeing the need for full day child care, she opened the PUMPKIN PATCH Early Learning Center in Guilderland in 1989. In addition to directing two child care sites for over 33 years Christine develops and regularly presents professional trainings with an emphasis on child care administration, marketing, program and staff development and parent communication. She has presented programs in New York City; Binghamton; Saratoga Springs; Boston; Richmond, Virginia and Anchorage, Alaska. Chris is Infant/Child First Aid and CPR trained. You will currently find Miss. Chris teaching in the Preschool room.
Miss Rhonda - Co- Director- Rhonda has an Associates Degree in Early Childhood Education from Hudson Valley Community College. She is a 30 year veteran of the Early Childhood field. Rhonda has worked as a UPK teacher for eight years. She also holds a NYS Teaching Assistant certificate and was the after school director for Pre-K summer program with the YMCA. Currently, Rhonda is enrolled in the Children's Administration Programming Credential program at HVCC, pursuing her certificate of Early Childhood Center Director.
Miss Gail - Substitute Teacher Gail started teaching at the Patch in 1990. Over the years she has worked as a full time teacher in every room in the center. She received her Associate’s degree in Early Childhood Education from SUNY Cobleskill. Over the years Gail has become a mentor to all new staff. She is responsible for creating classroom environments that are developmentally appropriate for all the children at the Patch. Gail is certified in both Infant/Child CPR and First Aid.
Miss Wendy - Office Manager-Wendy’s accomplishments include a degree in Early Childhood from Hudson Valley Community College, and she is also a mom of daughter, Izabelle. She has worked in childcare for 27 years both as a teacher and as an administrator. Wendy has been a great addition to the PUMPKIN PATCH family since joining us in September 2011. She is First Aid, Infant/Child CPR and MAT certified.
Miss Muna -Pre School Teacher - Muna has a degree in art from Birenda College, Tribhuvan University, Nepal. All of the children at the Patch respond to Muna’s gentle spirit.
Miss Mackenzie- Toddler Teacher- Miss Mackenzie has her Associates degree in Early Childhood Education from HVCC, and is currently pursuing her Bachelor's degree in the field of Early Childhood at SUNY Empire College.
Miss Barb- Substitute- Barb has worked at Pumpkin Patch for the last 17 years, she currently is retired and works for us as a substitute.
Miss Rose-Teacher Assistant- Rose is a current student at Mildred Elley College working toward her degree and license in Massage Therapy. . She has served in the Early Childhood community for the past 3 years. She has a passion for seeing children learn.
Miss Alivia-Floater- Alivia is a student at Mansfield University studying Early Childhood Education. She is an avid basketball player for her school, and is on the Dean's list
Miss Arianna -Toddler Teacher -Arianna is a graduate of HVCC with her Associates Degree in Early Childhood Education. She has been with the Pumpkin Patch for 4 years, and has a passion for children's growth and development.
Miss Sarah - Floater- Sarah is a student at Bucknell College, studying Early Childhood Education. She is on the Dean's List and First Baseman of the Girl's Softball Team. Sarah is Pumpkin Patch Alumni from the Class of 2005.
Mrs. Connie Zack - Preschool Teacher - Connie is a recently retired FACS teacher, having taught Child Development classes for over 30 years at the Middle School, High School, and College level. Connie holds a B.A. in Human Ecology from NYS College of Human Ecology at Cornell and a Masters of Arts in Curriculum and Supervision from Hampton University.
Mrs. Joanne Buckley- Floater- Joanne is a retired 3rd Grade Teacher from N. Colonie School District where she taught for 30 years. She is a mother of two children, one which attended Pumpkin Patch.Joanne has a passion to see children blossom and grow into confident students.