Meet the WCP Team

Westport College Prep - Lauren

Lauren McBeth, M.Ed.

Executive Director

Lauren brings 14 years of experience to the field of education, both within public and private school environments. With her Bachelor’s Degree in Secondary Education and English from Keene State College and her Master’s Degree in Special Education from The University of Saint Joseph, Lauren brings a unique blend of experience, expertise, and passion to the field. Additionally, Lauren holds a current Connecticut certification in both English and Special Education.

Lauren began her career teaching English in a behavioral alternative environment in Stamford while honing behavior management techniques with high school students. She most recently taught at Winston Preparatory School in Norwalk for the past 11 years and also served as Dean of Student Life, building community service programming and experiential education excursions.

Lauren has extensive experience in working with students who learn differently, whether it be executive function challenges or students who are in need of individualized, academic support. With a passion for Service Learning, Lauren is always looking for ways to serve within the local community with her students, while both educating and broadening their views on the world around them.

Westport College Prep - Dawn

Dawn Matera, Ed.D.

Co-Founder

Early in her career, Dr. Matera earned a Bachelor of Science in psychology from Sacred Heart University and a Master of Science in special education from Southern Connecticut State University. She completed a teacher training program and obtained her Connecticut State Teaching Certification and taught complex learners, at specialty schools, for more than a decade.

More recently, she earned a Doctorate in educational leadership from Southern Connecticut State University.  Her doctoral dissertation focused on the student-teacher relationship, a potent but understudied construct.  More specifically, she examined special education teachers’ perceived facilitators and barriers to the teaching alliance, a construct borrowed from psychotherapy that involves the student-teacher relational bond as well as agreement on in class tasks and overall educational goals.

Dr. Matera founded two highly innovative academic programs over the course of her career.  The first is A Way to Learn, which has been providing academic coaching, executive function coaching, and tutoring for students of all abilities since 2008.  The second is the Westport Day School (WDS), a Connecticut state-approved special education school for internalizing students in seventh through twelfth grades.  WDS is academically accredited by Middle States and National Independent Private Schools Association (NIPSA) and certified as a therapeutic school by NIPSA.

Mark Beitel

Mark Beitel, Ph.D.

Co-Founder

Dr. Beitel is a licensed clinical psychologist. He holds a Bachelor of Arts degree from the Psychology Honors Program at the University of Michigan, a Master of Arts degree from the New School for Social Research, and a Doctoral degree in Clinical Psychology from Fordham University. He received clinical training at Bellevue Hospital Center, New York University Medical Center, and St. Luke’s-Roosevelt Hospital. Dr. Beitel received college-specific training in the counseling centers of Fordham University and Northern Arizona University. Post-doctoral work took place at Yale University School of Medicine.

Dr. Beitel began his career at Yale as a full-time member of the Psychiatry faculty and now serves part-time as an Assistant Clinical Professor. In this capacity, he teaches courses at the undergraduate and graduate level, conducts psychotherapy research, and provides supervision to trainees ranging from college interns to medical residents. He is affiliated with the Ethnicity, Race, and Migration program at Yale College. Dr. Beitel also served as an Adjunct Assistant Professor of Medical Psychology (in Psychiatry) in the College of Physicians and Surgeons at Columbia University.

He has authored or coauthored more than 40 scientific articles on personality, psychotherapy, substance use, chronic pain, integrative medicine, and culture. His current research interests include 1) the role of personality variables in health, illness, and treatment, 2) complementary and/or alternative mental health interventions, such as acupuncture, mindfulness, and physical activity, specifically yoga, and 3) the theory and practice of behavioral health interventions with Native Americans.

Next Steps...

Fall semester classes begin on Septemebr 8, 2020. Please contact Lauren McBeth for additional information or to arrange a tour.