2012-13 NJFEA Vice President, Mollie Miller, Elected as New National FEA Student President – At the 2013 FEA National Conference in Orlando, Florida, April 25-28, 2103, Mollie Miller was elected to the post of Student National President. This is the second time in the three years that the National FEA has elected student officers that the Student National President was from New Jersey — and served as a NJFEA State Officer. (2010-11 NJFEA State Officer, Leilani Bell served as the first-ever National FEA Student President.) Read more here.
NJFEA Student of the Month – Binah Ezra – As a three-year participant in the NJ Future Educators Association, Binah Ezra has contributed and accomplished many things, especially working with children. She has read to children in the local elementary schools in Mahwah numerous times, and participated in a book drive for a school in need in Paterson, NJ. Binah volunteered her time, collecting and sorting over 2,000 books for the school and took a trip there to deliver these books, read to children, and participate in their class activities. In addition, Binah participated in a “Buddy Program” with a special needs class in Mahwah High School to socialize, play games, and spend time with the students. In the summertime, Binah runs a small camp with her sister where they work together to create calendars filled with exciting and creative activities. These activities range from academics to sports to arts and crafts to fun with technology. Currently, Binah also babysits and tutors on a daily basis. All of these projects and experiences that she has been involved in working with children were uplifting experiences and accomplishments for her.
Binah says, “Very few professions allow people to let their imaginations run wild while also touching the hearts and souls of hundreds each day. Teaching is one of these professions. It would give me the opportunity to help students through academic challenges or personal struggles outside of school. I would be able to give my passion all that I have to offer to a point where students might look to me as their mentor or maybe even their role model. I also long for those precious moments as well as those inspirational times when my students will give back to me.”
Community Connection Mentoring Program provides out of classroom experiences that promote academic success. Entrance into the program is through an application process that results from community contacts with churches, community agencies, the NAACP, etc. Montclair State University FEA students volunteer as mentors. The hour and a half weekly sessions promote a relationship between mentor and mentee. FEA students gain the experience of working with children from different backgrounds, establishing relationships and exploring learning styles.
The youth participate in structured and creative activities with mentors. The K-12 students’ engage in large group, small group and one-on-one activities that encourage the pursuit of higher education, and teaching as a career option. This is accomplished through activities that build self-confidence, encourages cooperation and improved school performance.
Gateway Regional Gets Active – The NJFEA Chapter from Gateway Regional High School (GRHS) recently participated in two events that were a great success for the students. First, the GRHS NJFEA students volunteered their time at Kappa Delta Pi’s “Literacy Alive” program. This activity was held on March 8, 2013, at Rowan University. Elementary students from the local area were invited to the event to learn all about literacy. This year’s theme was “Reading Rodeo!” Also, on March 24, 2103, the GRHS NJFEA Chapter, National Honors Society, Students in Action, and Student Council volunteered at the Special Olympics Spring Sports Bowling Festival.
NJFEA Chapter Incentive Grant Winners – Congratulations to four NJFEA chapters for being selected to receive service project incentive grants from the Center for Future Educators/NJFEA!
Chapter: American History High School
Project: “Let’s Read to 6th Graders” – NJFEA chapter members will read to the students twice a week for 10 weeks. As a special feature of the literacy program, renowned children’s author, Caroline Brewer, will conduct a 3-hour reading workshop for the students.
Chapter: Multicultural Inclusive Teacher Candidate Organization (Montclair State University)
Project: “Community Connection Mentoring Program” – Montclair State University students will serve as mentors to help 12 K-12 students develop the requisite skills, knowledge, and dispositions that will enable them to become high achieving learners. This pre-collegiate program will give future educators out-of-classroom teaching experience.
Chapter: Tomorrow’s Teachers – West New York School District
Project: “Tomorrow’s Teachers Tutoring Program” – The program seeks to increase the reading and math skills of the children in West New York School District School #1. The program will also train high school students enrolled in the Tomorrow’s Teachers program to use numerous methods, strategies, and materials when planning their tutoring sessions.
Chapter: Mahwah High School
Project: “CARE – Care and Respect Everywhere” – The initiative supports a series of activities to encourage students to care more for their fellow students and community members and, in turn, to help reduce incidents of bullying.
NJFEA Student of the Month – Stuart Faunce, Allentown High School, Allentown, NJ – “Ask not what your country can do for you; ask what you can do for your country.” (John F. Kennedy) It is that quote that describes how Stuart Faunce feels abou this community. Stuart enjoys working with others for mutual benefit. He participates in the Adopt A Road program, which is run through the Allentown FFA [Future Farmers of America] chapter. The chapter cleans up Polhemustown Road in Allentown, NJ. As an officer of his FFA chapter, Stuart also worked on the pet food drive during the holidays, helping to collect pet food and supplies for animals at the Popcorn Park Zoo. In the fall and spring, he works with the 4th graders at the local elementary school in their Garden Club. In that role, Stuart teaches how to properly maintain a garden by showing the elementary school students how to weed their garden and how to plant flowers and shrubs.
It is important to note that the Allentown High School FEA exists because Stuart brought it to there. After attending the summer program, Stuart pitched the idea at his high school, found Ms. Pam Koharchik to serve as the advisor, and started up the club which continues to grow.
Stuart wants to become an educator because he wants to create a world where people should not have to worry about going hungry. As an agricultural teacher, he plans to teach his students about the need for smart and strong leaders in the industry to solve the problem of world hunger. As one person, this is a very hard task to accomplish. As a teacher, Stuart will be able to inspire many students throughout his career to help achieve this goal. Stuart has been inspired by his own teachers, who he considers to be “coaches” in his life. Like them, Stuart would like to coach students on life, to allow them to make the right choices in order to become successful.
Ridegefield Park High School – A Service Project for the Betterment of Our Own School – At Ridgefield Park High School, the students in the Future Educators Program developed a service project that would profit their own school community. They decided to put together a series of messages on the morning announcements that featured character education. Eight values or topics were chosen, among which were: integrity, motivation, appreciation, kindness and patience.
The students developed a Monday morning announcement for each value, a shorter reminder announcement for Wednesdays and a poster for each of the featured value. These are located in a grouping in the high school commons.
The class also wanted to know if their efforts were worthwhile, so the students developed a short pre-message survey to find out if the students felt that the ideas we mean to promote were perceived at our school. At the end of the activity, another student survey will be administered to determine the outcome of their efforts.
NJFEA Student of the Month – Lauren Eltringham, a committed, supportive leader in the FEA club and the Tomorrow’s Teachers classroom at Middletown High School South, was named NJFEA Student of the Month for January 2013. Lauren has been a committed, supportive leaders in the FEA club and the Tomorrow’s Teachers classroom at Middletown High School South. Lauren has volunteered to organize and run the fundraiser, Dancing with the Teachers. She has also volunteered to help raise money for Sandy victims. Lauren is organizing the Tomorrow’s Teachers class to reach in the public library during Dr. Seuss Day. Lauren also presented at the Annual NJFEA Conference on January 8, 2013 at The College of New Jersey.
This is not all that Lauren does! She is the spirit behind the class and club. She ignites the students to give back to their community with her positive attitude. She has spoken at Middletown High School South’s staff meeting to elicit help from the staff with fundraisers and activities. Once you get Lauren going, you cannot stop her! Lauren is a great role model for future educators and club members.
The Center for Future Educators at The College of New Jersey and the New Jersey Future Educators Association congratulates Lauren Eltringham for being selected as NJFEA Student of the Month for January 2013.
WWPSH-South NJFEA Chapter Takes a Service Field Day to P.J. Hill Elementary School – On Monday, February 11, the West Windsor-Plainsboro High School South FEA chapter and Youth Teaching Youth (Tomorrow’s Teachers) class took a service day field trip to P.J. Hill Elementary School in Trenton. Over the past few months, the FEA chapter held a book drive at WWPHS-S and collected close to 600 books. Chapter members took the books to the P.J. Hill Elementary School and, once there, sorted them on different tables according to grade level.
Each elementary school class that came to the library got a chance to look at the assortment of books and each student go to select one book that he or she wanted. The book that the students selected became theirs to keep and take home. Also while at P.J. Hill, the WWPHS-S FEA Chapter members read aloud to the pre-k and kindergarten classes. Chapter members also had a chance to talk to the P.J. Hill librarian and the teachers to learn more about teaching in an urban setting.
To FEA Chapter members also observed a 3rd grade class being taught in the library. The reason for the third graders being taught in the library that day was because the ceiling in their regular classroom was leaking. The WWPHS-S Chapter members knew that if there was a leaking ceiling one of their classrooms, it would have been attended to immediately without disrupting their lesson. It was difficult for the 3rd graders to have their class in the library because the lack of walls caused the students to be easily distracted by their surroundings. Students were constantly being asked to sit back down in their seats, focus on the lesson, and stop looking around.
Overall, the field trip was a huge success and everyone had a great time!
NJFEA Advisory Board Meeting – The Center for Future Educators/New Jersey Future Educators Association expresses it deep appreciation to the members of the NJFEA Advisory Board meeting for a very productive day on January 19, 2013 — the inaugural meeting of the 2013 NJFEA Advisory Board. The Advisory Board presented critical recommendations on a range of issues, including expanding NJFEA membership, expanding implementation of the Tomorrow’s Teachers high school course, and the format and content of the Annual NJFEA Conference. We look forward to working with this very knowledgeable and dedicated group of professionals and NJFEA Student State Officers.
The Advisory Board members include: Larry Fieber (chair), Ashley Bencan, Dawn Bozian, MaryLynn Birsin, Barry Conboy, Thomas Conley (NJFEA State Officer), Jeanne DelColle, Tracey Garrett, Marie Gironda, Gail Hilliard-Nelson, Jordyn Jelstrom (NJFEA State Officer), Kayla Jerman (NJFEA State Officer), Rae Koumoulis, Rebecca Malz (NJFEA State Officer), Mollie Miller (NJFEA State Officer), Alnetta Price, Leo Ricketts (NJFEA State Officer), Heather Staples, Marianne Titus, and Lori Thompson (secretary).
Annual NJFEA Conference – The 2012 NJFEA Conference, rescheduled October 30, 2012 to January 8, 2013 due to Hurricane Sandy, came off without a hitch! Hundreds of high school students from across New Jersey came to The College of New Jersey to learn about becoming a special education teacher or an elementary school teacher, the meaning of multiple intelligences, becoming a school counselor, living successfully with disabilities, standing up against bullying, aspiring to become a school principal, teaching math, and many more topics. There was something for everyone. Participants were also treated to lunch in The College of New Jersey’s award-winning dining facility in Eickhoff Hall. We are very pleased to have such a strong turnout for this statewide event year after year! It is a testament to New Jersey’s commitment to home-growing the next generation of talented and dedicated teachers to fill our classrooms. The Center for Future Educators and the New Jersey Future Educators Association thank the aspiring future teachers and their teachers and NJFEA advisors who made this day a success. We look forward to seeing all of you again at our many other events throughout the year!
NJEA Minority Leadership Recruitment Committee Meeting – CFE Executive Director, Mr. Larry Fieber, and 2012-13 NJFEA Officers Kayla Jerman and Leo Ricketts were guests at the January 8, 2013 meeting of the NJEA Minority Leadership Recruitment Committee. The meeting was held at the NJEA headquarters in Trenton, NJ. Mr. Fieber spoke about the many initiatives of the Center for Future Educators and the NJFEA, including the Urban Teacher Academy, Tomorrow’s Teachers Training program, NJFEA Leadership Institute, NJFEA Incentive Grant Program, etc. Kayla and Leo spoke to the committee members about their experiences at the first-ever NJFEA Leadership Development Institute held in October 2012, and Kayla told the group about her experiences in the summer 2012 Urban Teacher Academy. We are proud of Kayla and Leo — and all of our NJFEA Officers — for their dedication to careers in teaching!