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Student receives Raritan Valley Community College Nonprofit Civic Engagement Award

BRANCHBURG TOWNSHIP, NJ (Somerset County) – Sandra Faragalla of Neshanic Station has been named the recipient of the Raritan Valley Community College Nonprofit Civic Engagement Award for the 2022-2023 academic year.

This recognition is intended to enhance the learning experience and community involvement of Service Learning Program students who have actively participated in community engagement activities as part of their academic classes.

A first-generation college student, Faragalla is a second-year Communications Studies major at RVCC. During the fall 2022 and spring 2023 semesters, she has been deeply involved in volunteering with several afterschool programs, camps, and community events for local nonprofits as part of her Event Planning and Management course. Applying her academic skills as an event planner through her service, Faragalla has organized group games, play sessions, holiday parties, and fundraising events and also mentored children and teens.

In addition to volunteering through the Service Learning Program, Faragalla has been actively involved on campus through the Student Government Association Activities Board, Cru (Campus Crusade for Christ), and the National Society for Leadership and Success, providing service to the College for many different engagement events and activities.

Reflecting on her service, Faragalla said, “I want to continue volunteering and serving my community in any way I can, because I believe there is unity in our community and beauty in our diversity. I also would like to educate individuals about the importance of volunteering and how it can benefit not only the community, but also the world, so we all can continue to have a better and brighter place to live.”

Faragalla’s other honors include being a recipient of the President’s Volunteer Service Award–Gold Level from the White House for volunteering over 300 hours in a single academic year.

She recently received the Axel Velden Memorial Scholarship at RVCC from the RVCC Foundation, which will help with continuing her studies at the College. After her graduation from RVCC next spring, she plans to pursue a Bachelor’s Degree in Communications at a four-year college or university in New Jersey.

Jay Edwards

Born and raised in Northwest NJ, Jay has a degree in Communications and has had a life-long interest in local radio and various styles of music. Jay has held numerous jobs over the years such as stunt car driver, bartender, voice-over artist, traffic reporter (award winning), NY Yankee maintenance crewmember and peanut farm worker. His hobbies include mountain climbing, snowmobiling, cooking, performing stand-up comedy and he is an avid squirrel watcher. Jay has been a guest on America’s Morning Headquarters,program on The Weather Channel, and was interviewed by Sam Champion.

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