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(PDF) (DOC) (JPG)June 12, 2017

Ramapo Peer Facilitation Program

MAHWAH, N.J. — Ramapo College’s Peer Facilitation Program has been selected as the NASPA (National Association of Student Personnel Administrators) Excellence Award Bronze Honoree in the category for Enrollment management, Financial Aid, Orientation, Parents, Persistence, First-year, Other-year, and related. Ramapo’s entry was submitted for consideration by Tracey Bender, Student Success Coordinator.

“Under the leadership of Tracey Bender and two student interns, the Peer Facilitation Program has doubled in size to 84 Peer Facilitators who volunteer to serve in pairs across 42 first-year seminar courses,” said Joseph Connell, Assistant Vice President of Student Success at Ramapo College. “Through a ratio of 12 students to 1 peer facilitator, the Peer Facilitation Program provides the personal mentoring that helps welcome and transition each of our first-year students.”

The NASPA Excellence Awards were created to recognize student affairs practitioners who develop transformative, innovative, and data-driven programs at the institutional level.

The Peer Facilitation Program was designed to foster a sense of community among first-year students by connecting them with upper-class mentors who were once new to Ramapo themselves. Through exercises in self-reflection, team building, trust and acceptance, peers pass on their knowledge to ease the transition to college life, enhance the first-year experience and immerse students in the Ramapo community. The program provides new students with direction, a sense of what to expect during their first few months and a network of support that extends beyond the classroom.

Peer Facilitators are chosen from a pool of applicants with diverse experiences and perspectives who participate in extensive training. They work with First-Year Seminar faculty to forge bonds with and among students in their classes. Through their presence and weekly class facilitation they help new students feel comfortable and provide them with tools to help them excel; in doing so, they expedite three key forms of engagement: Personal, Social, Campus & Civic.


Ramapo College of New Jersey is the state’s premier public liberal arts college and is committed to academic excellence through interdisciplinary and experiential learning, and international and intercultural understanding. The College is ranked #1 among New Jersey public institutions by College Choice, and is recognized as a top college by U.S. News & World Report, Kiplinger’s, Princeton Review and Money magazine, among others. Ramapo College is also distinguished as a Career Development College of Distinction by, boasts the best campus housing in New Jersey on, and is designated a “Military Friendly College” in Victoria Media’s Guide to Military Friendly Schools.

Established in 1969, Ramapo College offers bachelor’s degrees in the arts, business, data science, humanities, social sciences and the sciences, as well as in professional studies, which include business, education, nursing and social work. In addition, the College offers courses leading to teacher certification at the elementary and secondary levels, and offers graduate programs leading to master’s degrees in Accounting, Business Administration, Data Science, Educational Technology, Educational Leadership, Nursing, Social Work and Special Education.


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