Samantha Kuczun, Director and Owner
Samantha has been dancing since the age of 3 and began teaching in high school. She has performed at the Amesbury Playhouse and the North Shore Music Theatre, as well as at Radio City Music Hall with the Rockettes. In 2014 she graduated with a Bachelor of Arts Degree in Dance Pedagogy from the Conservatory of Performing Arts at Point Park University in Pittsburgh, PA.
While living in Pittsburgh, Samantha taught at a performing arts school with special needs students. She fell in love with her job and wanted to continue teaching performing arts to special needs back at home in Massachusetts. Samantha opened Special Stars in October 2014. Her goal for Special Stars is for it to always be a place where life can become more special for the individuals.
Tom Kuczun, Volunteer Assistant
Tom Kuczun started volunteering and assisting with Special Stars in January 2015, but has been behind the scenes since day one. He currently works at Xpress Natural Gas in Stratham, NH as a project engineer, but loves being able to volunteer and help his wife during classes at Special Stars. He enjoys seeing how proud individuals become of their accomplishments and loves seeing the joy on their faces.
Kathy Manson, Volunteer Assistant
Kathy Manson started volunteering and assisting with Special Stars in May 2016. She owned Kathy’s Tumbleweed School of Dance for 35 years and has now closed down to start a new journey. She is looking forward to helping her daughter, Samantha Kuczun, with the Special Stars Program. Kathy enjoys helping the individuals learn to be confident and feel special. Nothing pleases her more than seeing the students’ excitement and improvement over the course of a session.
Melanie Gardella, Volunteer Assistant
Melanie is a lifetime resident of Salisbury and a mother of three. She works at the Institution for Savings and is very involved in the community. Melanie was the first assistant for Special Stars and we are very lucky to have her. She loves spending time with the indivuals, helping during class, and watching the students shine.
Katherine Lee, Volunteer Assistant
Katherine has worked in several different fields, but her true passion is in assisting individuals with disabilities. She was very excited when she saw that Special Stars was a new program at the studio. She enjoys watching all of the indivduals as they learn new skills and work on old skills. Being able to watch them enjoy their time with us is amazing!
Jessica Carroll,Volunteer Assistant
Jessica recently joined Special Stars in 2018, but has worked in the special needs community for many years. She has a cousin with special needs and has always had a specialce place in her heart for this community. She enjoys helping these individuals grow in their lives and is excited to be a part of Special Stars.
Jen Coco, Volunteer Assistant
Jen Coco began assisting at Special Stars in September 2016. She enjoys working with our students and finds it extremely rewarding. She is a mother to 3 young children and is the PTA’s treasurer at their school. She volunteers throughout the year in the classrooms, on field trips, and also as a lunch recess monitor. She has also worked at Kathy’s and Kadee’s Tumbleweed for the past 4 years and loves helping with the little kids dance classes!
Katelin Murphy, Volunteer Assistant
Katelin Murphy has 10 years of dance experience. She recently graduated from Utica college with a Master's Degree in Occupational Therapy and is hoping to begin working in August helping children to succeed in their own environment. Katelin loves working with individuals with a variety of abilities. Special Stars is a great opportunity for her to continue developing her skills working with many individuals.
INTERESTED IN VOLUNTEERING?
Special Stars could not keep doing our work without the incredible support of our volunteers. If you, or someone you know, is interested in volunteering, please put "Volunteer" in the subject and message us today!
*Volunteer internship opportunities available.