The 2018 New Jersey Distinguished Interns Awards Ceremony was held at the Pollack Theater at Monmouth University on Wednesday, June 13. Bloomfield College Education Division graduates, Robert Brunciak ’18 and Johnny Vega ’18, were recognized for their outstanding work as clinical interns and students in the College’s teacher education program. Nominees spanned across 28 New Jersey colleges and universities, all of whom were honored for their excellence in the field of education.
Brunciak, a post-baccalaureate student, received his K-12 certification in History. He was a clinical intern at Bloomfield High School and completed his internship under the guidance of his mentor and cooperating teacher, Mr. Sean Downey.
Vega (pictured) received a P-3 certification and has been teaching in Lyndhurst since completing his internship last December. Vega was a clinical intern in a 2nd grade classroom. His cooperating teacher, Ms. Gina McGuiness, supported him throughout the process, allowing him to take risks and gain confidence as he began his journey as a classroom teacher. Ms. McGuiness was also honored at the event.
Following the opening reception, nominees and guests welcomed speakers to the theater, including the Acting New Jersey Commissioner of Education, Dr. Lamont O. Repollet; 2017-2018 Somerset County Teacher of the Year, Mr. Michael Skomba; and 2017-2018 New Jersey State Teacher of the Year, Ms. Amy Andersen, who gave an inspiring keynote address. Ms. Andersen is no stranger to Bloomfield College and its educations majors, having visited the campus in the spring. In attendance from Bloomfield College were Dr. Amy Eguchi, Division Chair, Ms. Mary Porcelli, Director of Clinical Practice, and Mr. Kenneth Brino, Clinical Supervisor.
“This nomination is a testament to hard work and dedication to their studies while students in the Bloomfield College Teacher Education program, and to their commitment to their students, cooperating teachers, and the field of education while in the role of a clinical intern,” said Ms. Porcelli. “Since completing the program, both Robert and Johnny have come back to campus to speak with our current teacher candidates about their experiences as clinical interns and have shared suggestions and tips for completing the internship successfully. We wish them much success as they begin their careers in the field of education.”