Maranda Valentino-Kotchman


Maranda Valentino graduated from Waynesburg University in 2017 with a Bachelors in history with secondary education.  She was part of the 2016 VIH cohort and completed her experience in Saint Petersburg, Russia.  While abroad, she studied the Russian language and culture at Peter the Great Saint Petersburg Polytechnic University.  Her host parents, Dymitri and Olga, made sure she experienced the most of Russia by helping with learning the Russian language and cooking different traditional Russian cuisine. 

She was able to accomplish her goals and action plans, which were to learn and use Russian in the city and learn about the role of women during the Soviet Union and in present day Russia.  She worked with the other Waynesburg Viras with completing a CEE based around different experiences each person had abroad and how the community can locally address the problem. After learning Russia’s common saying “If he hits you, he loves you”, she knew she needed to spread awareness about domestic violence in Russia and within the community. 

Since graduating, Maranda has worked in short term and long term positions teaching AP United States History, Psychology, and middle school Social Studies. Maranda currently works for Intermediate Unit One as and English as a Second Language (ESL) teacher for students in K-12.