Every April, OCC holds a ceremony called Curriculum Honors during which we recognize the top student in each of the College’s majors. It’s one of the highlights of the year. During the ceremony a faculty member introduces each student and details his or her accomplishments, the student receives a certificate and a light blue stole to be worn at commencement, and the student is photographed with OCC President Dr. Casey Crabill. Due to the coronavirus, also known as COVID-19, we were unable to hold our ceremony this year.
Nonetheless, we are proud to recognize the achievements of each of our 2019-2020 honorees. We are announcing each of them in conjunction with the reorganization of our majors into 8 schools. Following are the recipients in the School of Education:
Early Childcare Certificate - Nadine Abdelfatah
- West Genesee High School, Class of 2018
- Faculty testimonial from Professor Pat Martin: “Nadine displays a high level of professionalism as a student teacher at the Children’s Learning Center. She works well with her co-teachers, is dependable, reliable, and respectful, and has formed many bonds with children and teachers. Nadine is also very mindful of children’s needs, recognizes them, and adjusts her teaching to meet their needs, thereby demonstrating an ability to put early childhood theory into practice. On her student biography board posted at the Children’s Learning Center Nadine wrote, ‘I have been taking care of kids since I was 14 years old and it’s one of my favorite things to do.’ It makes her happy. Nadine is excited to graduate with her Early Child Care Certificate and ‘find out what my future holds.’ Her Education professors and staff at the Children’s Learning Center say there is no doubt Nadine’s future in Early Childhood Education is bright and she will be a great asset to the childcare profession.”
Early Childhood - Tammy Bean
- Onondaga Jr/Sr High School, class of 1997
- Faculty testimonial from Professor Nancy Gabriel: Tammy became interested in pursuing a career in Early Childhood Education when her children were enrolled at Lafayette Head Start. She began working as a substitute Teacher’s Aide and earned a Childhood Development Associate through OCC’s Early Childhood Career Advancement Ladder program. Tammy earned her associate degree and is now a Head Teacher at Lafayette Head Start. Observing her in the classroom was indeed a pleasure. It was obvious she connected child development theory to practice through the developmentally appropriate classroom activities and her genuine interactions with the children. According to her supervisor ‘Tammy has done a fantastic job leading her team and managing her classroom. She goes a great job teaching and interacting. Tammy demonstrates professionalism in everything she does.’ Tammy and her husband have nine children and enjoy traveling to national parks. Their most recent adventure took them to Alaska. Tammy plans to continue her education and pursue a bachelor’s degree in Early Childhood Education.”
Liberal Arts & Sciences: Adolescent Education - Timmy Winn
- West Genesee High School, Class of 2018
- Faculty testimonial from Professor Fran Dulcich: ”What a pleasure to have Timmy in my EDU 275 Cultural Foundations of Education class! I dare say he is every professor’s dream student! Always in class, always prepared (he read the chapters or at least made me think so!), always smiling, and genuinely nice! His work exceeded expectations such that I’ve kept his final project, a portfolio of his field experience in a high school classroom, as a model for future students! I am confident Timmy will make an excellent teacher and I’m delighted to nominate him for this award.”
Liberal Arts & Sciences - Childhood Education - Paris Graziano
- Central Square High School, class of 2018
- Faculty testimonial from Professor Fran Dulcich: “I have known Paris from having her as a student in two of my classes, the most recent being EDU 275 Cultural Foundations of Education. Focused on achieving her best, Paris was diligent with assignments and class work. She was active on campus as president of the Student Association as well as active in her community, coaching color guard for the Central Square School District. But above all of her accomplishments and stellar scholastic achievements, Paris was passionate about teaching! She was quick to recognize inequities in educating young children and determined to make a difference. She took special care of a young student in her field placement that needed extra understanding and attention. She modeled appropriate behavior whenever she could, all the while staying positive, cheerful, and respectful. I’m proud to nominate Paris for this award and I know her future students will be lucky to have her as their teacher!”
Physical Education and Exercise Science - Jonathan Pine
- Cicero-North Syracuse High School, Class of 2002
- A poem about Jonathan from Professor Robin Weeks:
- “‘J’ is for just and equitable, peer supportive, and considerate.
- ‘O’ is for one person you definitely want on your team. Jon is driven to achieve and works tirelessly for success as demonstrated by his 3.7 grade point average.
- ’N’ is for noble in his family-centered actions of caring for two children and a spouse while balancing work and academics.
- ’A’ is for A committed fitness professional.
- ’T’ is for tenacious.
- ’H’ is for honest with a solid sense of integrity.
- ’A’ is for academically minded and counting higher education in the field of Health and Exercise Science.
- ’N’ is for his never give up attitude because he knows we are all capable of more than we think we are.
- ’P’ is for positive mindset, growth mindset.
- ’I’ is for insightful and genuinely interested in learning other people’s perspectives.
- ’N’ is for nack for motivating people and remembering to congratulate their efforts with a ‘high five.’
- ’E’ is for enthusiastic and enjoys learning.”