John Gerstmyer

Assistant Professor of Education
Director of School Counseling Program

Dr. Gerstmyer grew up in Towson, MD, near Baltimore. Before coming to Salem, he worked as a middle school counselor in York, PA, and has taught graduate classes at McDaniel College (Westminster, MD) and Penn State York (York, PA). On teaching at Salem, he says, “I truly cannot express how thankful I am to be on the faculty of beautiful Salem College with such wonderful colleagues and students."

Dr. Gerstmyer believes a women’s college can foster increased independence in its women students, creating the likelihood that these students will reach further and dig deeper to attain their unique and holistic potentialities.

Dr. Gerstmyer’s research interests include counseling, children’s play and child development. He has published an article about play as performance and another (with co-authors) which investigated children’s play-fighting in school. He looks forward to getting back to writing and publishing.

He believes that students entering the education discipline will leave with a sense of personal fulfillment and significance through school and academic leadership and they will be instantly employable.

His advice for students comes from a Chinese proverb, “If you get up one more time than you fall, you will make it through.”

Dr. Gerstmyer and his wife, Pat, have three grown children (two sons and a daughter), plus four grandchildren--a granddaughter almost four, a grandson almost two, and two granddaughters scheduled to "arrive" in November and December.

In his free time his family enjoys visiting Cape Town, South Africa, to visit friends they made while living there for six months in 1994, during the election period of Nelson Mandela. He also enjoys football, lacrosse and the beach. Most recently, he has taken up painting with watercolors.

Favorite Quotes:

Matthew 6:33 “But seek first his kingdom and his righteousness, and all these things will be given to you as well.” (NIV)

Philippians 4:13 “I can do all things through him who gives me strength.” (NIV)

Favorite Movie and Book:

Movie- House of Sand and Fog. A compelling tale of the dilemma faced by two seemingly justified antagonists

Book- Moby Dick Because it is a psychological study containing beautiful and haunting descriptions of life at sea.



Teacher Education