Mika Long has worn many .hats. during a .rewarding. 38-year teaching career in the Elizabeth Forward School District which will end at the current school year with her retirement.

This service began in the fall of 1976 as a half day Title I tutor at the high school. Her classroom was nicknamed .The Reading Room., a place where students could get help with reading skills and homework. She was hired full time in 1979 as reading specialist at the high school, teaching Title I Reading-Study Skills and SAT Preparation.

In 1982, Long first entered the technology world when her teaching assignment was changed to half day high school Reading and half day elementary Computer Literacy for fifth and sixth graders. Working with the high school computer teacher, Barb Walton, and the middle school computer teacher, Maryann Kantorczyk, they began creating an advanced technology program for all grade levels in the EFSD. Radio Shack TRS 80 computers and Apple IIe workstations were her first equipment. Today as an elementary technology integrator, she uses iPads and iPods.

Long has taught everything about technology from the basics of what the different parts of the computer do to assisting teachers in implementing technology as part of their curriculum. She always embraced the quick pace at which technology grows and changes and has sought out ways to improve instruction so that EF students would have an advantage as they pursue their futures. She has employed a .hands on. approach preparing her elementary students with the necessary technology skills for success in the ever changing world.

While at EFHS, Long sponsored the National Honor Society and SADD. She was an assistant track and field coach with Sandy Hearn and then later with George Lammay. Long was a member of the original planning committee for the Senior Citizen Holiday Breakfast at the high school. Over the years, she has served on numerous Long Range Planning committees, the Curriculum Council and Safety, Grading and Technology policy committees. She currently is a member of EFSD Safety Committee. She also has taken an active role as a staff trainer, conducting technology workshops during in-service days and after school.

Long has been recognized by the local and state community of educators for her work. She was chosen for the Pennsylvania Teacher Visitation . Goodwill Ambassador Program. in the the 1990s. In 2009, she was one of 25 employees receiving one of the .Making a Difference Awards. for making a difference in EFSD. The PA Department of Education recognized her as Keystone Technology Integrator as a teacher who focuses on student learning and uses technology as a tool to support this end. She was selected as the Elizabeth Forward Warrior Teacher for the 2011-12 school year.

Giving back to the Elizabeth Forward community is very important to her. One of her favorite roles has been teaching the evening Elizabeth Forward Adult Education classes. She is an active member of the Bunola Church of the Nazarene, the Pennsylvania State Education Association, the Elizabeth Forward Alumni & Friends Association, the Woman.s Club of Elizabeth, the Twentieth Century Club of McKeesport and the Elizabeth Township Historical Society where she is involved with fundraising to save, preserve and restore the Greenock Log House. In her spare time, she volunteers at Womansplace shelter.

A member of the EFAFA.s board, Long chaired the group.s .Entering Warrior Country. banner project. She and her husband, Bob, sponsor a scholarship, part of program administered by the EFAFA, which is given annually to an EFHS senior who will attend Penn State University.

The daughter of the late Donald and Ruth Smith Kvocka, she grew up on a farm near William Penn Elementary School in Forward Township. Her brother, Danny, still lives on the family homestead. Long graduated from EF in 1971. She attended Allegheny Community College.s South Campus and graduated from California University of Pennsylvania in 1975 with a Bachelor of Science degree in elementary education. She is married to Robert Long, also EF .71. They have one son, Robert Tyler, EF .06 and Penn State.10 graduate, who is a metallurgical engineer with U.S. Steel. The Longs reside in Mt. Vernon.