Morristown, N.J. (October 28, 2015) – Christina Scolaro '16 has received the Doris White Memorial Scholarship, awarded annually to student-teachers dedicated to the sciences. This award is conferred by the New Jersey Science Teachers' Association (NJSTA) in honor of Dr. Doris Gnauck White, a renowned science educator and researcher.
Christina wants to be a teacher. Specifically, a second grade teacher. But to make sure that she is ready for the profession, she is majoring in early childhood and elementary education, special education, art, with a potential minor in math.
Christina, as well as fellow CSE student, Mignon Schriek '15, received the scholarship which includes a year's membership in the New Jersey Science Teachers' Association (NJSTA) and free entrance to the NJSTA convention where the award is presented.
"Christina exemplifies in her endless ambitions and notable accomplishments the compass that should guide contemporary teachers. As Robert Coles has described the soulful passions of children questing to find meaning in life, Christina will be the teacher to guide her students to find success and happiness in achievement that mirror her own strivings," says Deborah Tulloch, associate professor of education.
Christina attended the convention in October 2015 and enjoyed the workshops. "I attended breakout sessions about starting STEM early in early childhood curriculum, incorporating engineering design in k-12 education, and 'Building the Science Learning Process - One Fold at a Time,' which is kinesthetic learning through a process called foldables that encourages an action to learn. The convention was a great experience!" she explains.
This award is one of a long list of honors and accomplishments that Christina has received. She is listed in the 2015 Who's Who Among College and University Students, consistently on the Dean's List, won the Mary Claire McGuire Spirit Award, is an NCAA Division III Scholar-Athlete, and has been in the Honors Program since her sophomore year. She is the SAAC representative for softball, as well as the team captain, and she was the secretary for the Elizabethan Education Association.
CSE was a huge change from Christina's alma mater, Watchung Hills Regional High School, with a student body of more than 2,000.
"Coming here was like hiring a private tutor in all subject areas," she explains. "Students and teachers are all very close and the teachers really care about you."
She also enjoys service learning as part of her total educational experience. For example, at the end of October, a group of student volunteers will host a trunk-or-treat party at a soccer game, inviting five youngsters from Saint Clare's Housing to enjoy the decorated cars and get their treats from the trunks. Saint Clare's Housing provides living space with supportive environments for people with chronic illnesses.
"I really enjoy volunteering and helping out wherever I can," she says.
To this end, she is known around her town of Longhill, N.J., and its environs as someone who will take in orphaned animals, get them healthy and find homes for them.
"When it comes to the animals, I just can't say no," she offers.
She currently works in an early childhood center in Warren, N.J., as a floating teacher, meaning that she works in all areas of the center as needed. Christina also offers pitching lessons on the weekends to girls playing for local softball teams. She used to be a volunteer coach, but had to give something up in order to keep up with her studies. While she lives on campus, she goes home quite frequently. "My mother's cooking is just too good!"
Her mantra is: Someone once told me not to bite off more than I can chew. I told them that I would rather choke on greatness than nibble on mediocrity.