Beacon College promoted Dana Manzo and Alex Morris-Wood in July to vice presidents expanding the College’s programs and services for students with learning differences.
Manzo will now serve as the vice president of the division of student affairs. In this new role for the College, she will oversee all student affairs services, including residential life, student judicial affairs, Title IX, counseling services, student activities and first-year experience, community educators, occupational therapists and accommodations coordinators, health promotions, athletics and fitness.
Manzo joined Beacon College in 2012 initially serving as a mental health counselor and then assuming the role of director of counseling services in 2017. As director of counseling, Manzo implemented a new model expanding access to mental health care and support. In 2022, Manzo was named dean of campus wellness and student development and worked with colleagues across campus to instill a culture of health and wellness that enhances students’ capacity to develop lifelong skills.
Prior to Beacon, Manzo counseled juvenile sexual abuse victims at The Healing Tree Sexual Trauma Recovery Center and has also worked in private practice where she consulted on children’s issues and post-partum depression.
She earned her bachelor’s degree in psychology at New York Institute of Technology and her master’s degree in counseling psychology from Palm Beach Atlantic University. She is currently working on a doctorate degree in counseling education and supervision from National Louis University.
Morris-Wood will now serve as the vice president of the division of program development and global partnerships. In this new role for the College, he will oversee the development and integration of non-credit and auxiliary programs, including the Center for College Readiness, transition counseling, pre-college programs, admissions, and non-traditional programs and outreach.
Morris-Wood joined Beacon College in 2018 and created and implemented Navigator PREP, the country’s first virtual transition-to-college program for students with learning and attention issues. Since 2018, Navigator PREP has expanded, now working with high school juniors (Navigator PREP Jr.) and college students (Navigator PREP – College Coaching). Additionally, Morris-Wood oversees Summer for Success, a summer transition program, and created Beacon Foundations, a live, virtual online semester program for students who learn differently.
He has been a contributor to other College initiatives including Project Discovery with the Sharjah Center for Learning Difficulties and more recently, the design and implementation of the Triadic Developmental Model, which allows for a more holistic wrap-around support model for Beacon students.
With 15 years of experience in special education, Morris-Wood previously worked in the private school sector with students with Asperger’s Syndrome and nonverbal learning disabilities as a teacher, department chair, assistant dean of students, and director of transition programming.
He presents nationally and internationally on topics related to systemic barriers in higher education for students with learning disabilities. Morris-Wood was identified as one of the Top 100 Educational Leaders in America by the Global Forum for Education and Learning.
He has a bachelor’s degree from Connecticut College in history and American studies, a master’s degree in mental health counseling from Post University, and he is pursuing his doctorate in educational policy from the University of Missouri.