Hackettstown, N.J. – Centenary University May 2016 graduate, Marisa Galfo, was one of 15 individuals selected as a New Jersey Distinguished Clinical Intern by the New Jersey Department of Education at Rider University. The ceremony was hosted by the New Jersey Association of Colleges for Teacher Education.
Since 1985, the Presidents of New Jersey’s teacher training institutions have been invited to submit the dossiers of their three most outstanding prospective teachers into competition for this award. This annual award publicly recognizes the year’s fifteen top graduates of teacher education programs in New Jersey’s colleges and universities. An independent panel of esteemed New Jersey educators evaluates these dossiers to select the award recipients.
This is the third time in recent years that a Centenary University graduate has been selected for this prestigious title. Galfo was nominated for this honor along with two other Centenary students. Galfo whose certification area is in Elementary Education, Early Childhood and Teacher of Students with Disabilities, completed her clinical internship at Mountain Villa School in Allamuchy under the direction of Centenary graduate student Jennifer Sauter and alumna Gina Davey ‘06.
During her time at Mountain Villa School, Galfo was placed in a Preschool Disabled Classroom and an Inclusive First Grade Classroom. She planned lessons for students with a wide range of learning differences such as autism, language delays, fragile X Syndrome and ADHD. Galfo worked in a setting with a co-operating teacher, six classroom aides, an occupational therapist, a physical therapist, a speech therapist and sixteen preschoolers.
“One of the challenges that I encountered was finding a way to seamlessly blend into a complex classroom dynamic and master classroom management,” says Galfo. “I was able to anticipate student triggers early into the process and be ready for what was going to arise next. Serving as a Clinical Intern in the Preschool Disabled Classroom not only influenced my professional growth, it helped me to learn how to effectively work on a team, provide support for students with a wide range of disabilities and develop as an active member in the school community.”
Galfo, who knew that teaching was going to be her career choice since she was in first grade, also attributes her success to her educational experience at Centenary University.
“The Education program at Centenary is truly amazing,” says Galfo. “The individualized attention that I received from my professors fully prepared me for my next steps in my professional journey.”
Galfo’s goal is to secure a teaching position for September. Whatever the future holds for her, however, one thing is certain. She is destined for a bright future in the field of teaching!
Founded in 1867 by the Newark Conference of the United Methodist Church, Centenary University’s academic program integrates a solid liberal arts foundation with a strong career orientation. This mix is designed to provide an educational experience that prepares students to succeed in the increasingly global and interdependent world.
Centenary University’s main campus is located in Hackettstown, N.J., with its equestrian facility in Washington Township (Morris County). The Centenary School of Professional Studies offers degree programs online and in two locations: Parsippany and Edison, online and at corporate sites throughout New Jersey. The School of International Programs recruits international students for study at Centenary and Centenary students for study abroad.