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Three Ramapo Graduates Recognized Among the State’s Top Teacher Candidates

(PDF) (DOC) (JPG)June 9, 2022

Ramapo DCIA Recipients

MAHWAH, N.J. – Three May 2022 graduates of the Ramapo College Teacher Education program were recognized for their outstanding academic work and clinical performance, distinguishing themselves as being among the finest New Jersey teacher candidates. Sona Borekjian, Rachel Olivo and Jamie Woods received the prestigious New Jersey Distinguished Clinical Intern Award (DCIA), which recognizes the top graduates and certification candidates of the state’s educator preparation programs.

“I am so very proud of our 2022 Distinguished Clinical Internship Awardees – Sona, Rachel and Jamie,” said Brian Chinni, Assistant Dean of Teacher Education at Ramapo College. “Each represents RCNJ Teacher Education’s finest, and embodies the exemplary education professional in every way. Their futures are extremely bright, and their influence on the children they serve will be profound.”

In addition, the credentials of each of the 2022 DCIA recipients from the pool of New Jersey educator preparation programs were evaluated by an external independent panel of educators. Jamie Woods was among the fifteen award recipients with distinction selected by the panel.

“Each of these exemplary clinical interns was provided invaluable mentorship and coaching from their respective Cooperating Teacher(s),” said Chinni. “On behalf of our DCIA recipients, faculty, administrative staff, and Teacher Education community, we would like to recognize and offer each our most heartfelt thanks and appreciation for all of their dedicated efforts and professional partnership.”

  • Sona Borekjian – Jennifer Winkler; 1st grade teacher at Alexander Hamilton School in the Glen Rock School District
  • Rachel Olivo – Christian Hildreth and Lauren Olson; both Social Studies teachers at West Morris Central High School in the West Morris Regional High School District
  • Jamie Woods – Lisa Kirch; 4th grade teacher at John Y. Dater School in the Ramsey School District.

“Congratulations to our distinguished recipients from Ramapo College, and to all of the 2022 recipients, and their dedicated faculty, cooperating teachers and clinical supervisors who have contributed to their success,” Chinni added.

Now in its nineteenth year, the DCIA is a collaborative effort between the New Jersey Association of Colleges for Teacher Education (NJACTE) and the New Jersey Department of Education (NJDOE). Selection is the result of a rigorous internal evaluative process that allows each program to nominate up to three (3) outstanding education students for the annual award.

Ramapo College’s Teacher Education and Certification Undergraduate Programs offer a wide range of state-of-the-art academic and professional certificate programs designed to meet a student’s unique learning, professional and personal needs. Each of our undergraduate degree and certification program offerings is grounded in the liberal arts, and built upon the four institutional pillars that promote experiential, interdisciplinary and culturally responsive teaching and learning.

Ramapo’s Teacher Education and Certification Graduate Programs offer a wide range of state-of-the-art academic and professional certificate programs designed to meet your unique learning, professional and personal needs. Each of our graduate degree and certification program offerings is grounded in the liberal arts, and built upon the four institutional pillars that promote experiential, interdisciplinary and culturally responsive teaching and learning.

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About Ramapo College

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 comprehensive college is situated among the beautiful Ramapo Mountains, is within commuting distance to New York City, was named one of the 50 Most Beautiful College Campuses in America by CondeNast Traveler, and boasts the best on-campus housing in New Jersey per Niche.com.

Ramapo College provides its students with individualized attention, mentorship, and supports; hands-on learning; and a range of opportunities for service and leadership development. Its graduation and retention rates exceed national averages and it places approximately 1,000 students per year in internships in New York City. The College is ranked #1 among New Jersey public institutions by College Choice; is recognized as the state’s top college on the list of Best Disability Schools by Great Value Colleges; is designated a “Military Friendly College” in Victoria Media’s Guide to Military Friendly Schools; and is recognized as a top college by U.S. News & World Report, Kiplinger’s, Princeton Review and Money magazine, among others.  

Ramapo College’s over 40,000 alumni are the confident, intellectually curious, self-aware, and humble people who are highly sought after and who make a positive impact at local, national, and global levels.  Ramapo College is distinguished as a Career Development College of Distinction by CollegesofDistinction.com. Every student at Ramapo is enrolled in its unique and award winning Pathways Program which equips and empowers students, across the continuum of their academic career, to secure internships, pursue graduate/professional school, and/or enter the job market. 

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, Applied Mathematics, Business Administration, Contemporary Instructional Design, Computer Science, Creative Music Technology, Data Science, Educational Leadership, Nursing, Social Work and Special Education, as well as a Doctor of Nursing Practice.

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