School of Education to honor area teachers with 2007 Dean’s Awards for Excellence
NEW PALTZ -- The School of Education at the State University of New York at New Paltz will award six of the region’s teachers with the 2007 Dean’s Award for Excellence in Teaching at 4:30 p.m., Sept. 18, at a ceremony to be held at The Terrace Restaurant on the New Paltz campus.
Since 1984, the School of Education at New Paltz has collaborated with area school administrators and the Mid-Hudson School Study Council to recognize teachers in the Mid-Hudson Valley for being superior in their fields and endeavors.
As recipients of this award, each of the teachers will receive an honorary appointment as an adjunct clinical professor within New Paltz's School of Education. They will also be recognized at the Mid-Hudson School Study Council’s Award for Excellence Dinner in October.
Nominations for outstanding teachers are made by school principals and district superintendents. The awards are given by the office of the dean of education at SUNY New Paltz based on recommendations from a review committee of education professionals. The winners are teachers who have demonstrated their commitment to teaching, to excellence and, most importantly, to children and their education.
"The award winners for this year truly represent the region's outstanding and dedicated teachers,” said Dr. Robert J. Michael, dean of the School of Education. “The School of Education is delighted to honor these educators for their outstanding contributions to teaching and learning.”
Recipients of the 2007 awards are: Michelle Friedel (The Career & Technical Center at Ulster County BOCES); Thomas Bemont (Pine Bush High School); Jennifer Lamoreaux (Livingston Manor High School, Livingston Manor School District); Frances Lang (John F. Kennedy Elementary School, Brewster Central School District); Ms. Sharon Stephenson-Rojan (Ramapo High School, East Ramapo Central School District); Ms. Cheryl Leopold (Wallkill Central School District).
Editors note: The following information was generated from materials of recommendation from each recipient's school district administration.
Michelle Friedel teaches 11th & 12th grade for the Career & Technical Center at Ulster County BOCES. She has taught there for the last twelve years beginning her career with BOCES as the Coordinator of the Childcare Center and, for the last nine years, teaching in the early childhood education program at the high school. Ms. Friedel is known for her “boundless energy and positive outlook”, and as a colleague wrote, “She is that teacher you will see in the classroom during summer break preparing the classroom for her students, making sure resources are easily accessible and that each student enters feeling welcomed. She truly believes that all children can learn and tirelessly works to ensure her students’ success.”
Thomas Bemont has been a teacher in the Pine Bush High School for the last 21 years and from the letters submitted by administrators and colleagues, his enthusiasm and passion for the profession he loves has never dimmed. “As with most great teachers,” writes Assistant Principal Michael Amsden, “Mr. Bemont has a love of his subject matter coupled with a love for his students. He knows how to communicate the relevance of history in a way that students both understand and appreciate, and his passion for his subject engenders a similar passion in his students.” He defines the words, “master teacher.”
Jennifer Lamoreaux teaches Earth Science and Environmental Science classes for Livingston Manor High School in the Livingston Manor School District and has done so for the last fourteen years. Ms. Lamoreaux is known as a compassionate teacher who tailors her lessons to fit the needs of her students. In the words of her principal, “Ms. Lamoreaux is a master teacher who gives freely of her time to her students, the school, and the community. She brings out the best in her students….she is an incredibly valuable asset to her school, her students, and the profession, and is indeed worthy of this award.”
Frances Lang has spent the last 21 years teaching first grade for John F. Kennedy Elementary School in the Brewster Central School District. “The impact she has made on students, their families, and her colleagues is extensive,” writes Principal Robin Young, “Unfortunately, her extreme modesty allows us little opportunity to acknowledge her…perhaps this modesty is what propels her, a master teacher, to excellence…” A parent volunteer echoes this sentiment, “There is an excitement for learning that is contagious and the children are proud of their accomplishments.” Mrs. Lang is a passionate educator whose contributions will be long lasting.
Ms. Sharon Stephenson-Rojan teaches high school students at Ramapo High School in the East Ramapo Central School District. Ms. Stephenson-Rojan teaches AP Biology during the day and then teaches biology for the “Twighlight Academy”, an after-school drop-out prevention program. In addition, she runs Ramapo’s highly acclaimed science research program. “Students from all backgrounds have grown to admire her and to look to her for guidance” writes a parent, “it is my hope that every student will have a teacher of Ms. Stephenson-Rojan’s caliber at least once in their lifetime. In the classroom, Ms. Stephenson-Rojan inspires her students to aim for the best. There are no limits of achievement for her students, many are being challenged like never before, and the success rate is extraordinary.” “She is the teacher we envision we would want for our own children.”
Ms. Cheryl Leopold has been an English teacher for the last 37 years in the Wallkill Central School District. Ms. Leopold’s “professional career has involved teaching at both the middle school and high school levels, including Regents, Honors, Elective, Summer and Evening school course work,” reports Superintendent Anthony Argulewicz, “She has always been willing to apply her knowledge and expertise to any class or group of students when asked of her.” Indeed, “her dedication and passion for the Wallkill community and the field of education is legendary,” says, Principal David Bernsley.
Located in the heart of a dynamic college town, 90 minutes from metropolitan New York City, the State University of New York at New Paltz is a highly selective college of about 8,000 undergraduate and graduate students.
One of the most well-regarded public colleges in the nation, New Paltz delivers an extraordinary number of majors in Business, Liberal Arts, Sciences, Engineering, Fine and Performing Arts and Education.
New Paltz embraces its culture as a community where talented and independent minded people from around the world create close personal links with real scholars and artists who love to teach.