Student of the Month
This award is sponsored each month by EASTERN’s faculty, Joint Operating Committee, and the Willow Grove Rotary Club to highlight student excellence, success, and service. This month, Jane Rickards, was selected. She is a senior at Abington Senior High School and is being honored for her work in EASTERN’s Robotics and Automated Technology program.
Jane’s fascination with technology led her to explore EASTERN during her tenth-grade year, prompted by a presentation at Abington Senior High School and insights from EASTERN/Abington students sharing their experiences. During her visit in tenth grade, she had the opportunity to observe the Robotics and Automated Technology as well as Welding Technology programs.
Jane is extremely active at EASTERN. She is a member of SkillsUSA, EASTERN’s student leadership organization and was part of the team that participated in the Chapter Display competitions in 2023 and is competing again this school year.
At Abington Senior High School, Jane is an Honor Roll student involved in activities such as a Stage Crew, and Link Crew – a club that helps welcome first-year students to the high school. She is also an Honor Roll student at Abington Senior High School.
“Jane is an outstanding student and dedicated to the engineering field,” said Hayley Granacher, EASTERN’s School to Career Coordinator/Jane’s Student of the Month Nominator. “Her internship supervisors, Mr. Felmey (EASTERN’s Electrical Technology Instructor), and Mr. Fox (EASTERN’s Facilities Manager) were so impressed with her hard work and professionalism. Her involvement and contributions to SkillsUSA are known and appreciated, school wide. I am pleased to be her Student of the Month Nominator and am so proud of her.”
After graduation from EASTERN and Abington Senior High School, Jane plans to attend Penn State Abington, and then complete her degree in Electromechanical Engineering at Penn State Berks.
Through her Robotics and Automated Technology program, Jane is completing industry-standard certifications through Universal Robotics e-Series in Core Track, Pro Track, and Application Track.
At EASTERN’s Awards Night in May 2023, Jane received the Straight A Award.
Jane was selected by EASTERN’s Facilities Team to work on electrical and facility upgrades as a paid intern over the summer of 2023.
Last year, Jane was nominated by her Robotics and Automated Technology Instructor for a National Women’s History Month student spotlight.
Jane was a volunteer for EASTERN’s student focus groups during the 2022 – 2023 and 2023 – 2024 school years, and volunteered for EASTERN’s Designer Bag Bingo fundraiser in 2023.
This award is sponsored each month by EASTERN’s faculty, Joint Operating Committee, and the Willow Grove Rotary Club to highlight student excellence, success, and service. This month, Theodore Stadanlick was selected. He is a senior at Jenkintown High School and is being honored for his work in EASTERN’s Collision Repair Technology program.
Theodore first learned about EASTERN from a friend from school who was a senior in Welding Technology. When he was in tenth grade, he came to visit EASTERN, and Collision Repair Technology was one of the programs he chose to tour. Theodore immediately felt like he belonged in that program and was excited to bring his family to EASTERN’s Open House.
Theodore is extremely active at EASTERN. He volunteered as a student volunteer for EASTERN’s Open House in March 2023 and as a student speaker for the EASTERN recruitment presentation at Jenkintown High School in 2022 and 2023.
At Jenkintown, Theodore plays Varsity Football, is a member of the Gender and Sexuality Alliance, is a bassist in the Jazz Band, and has acted in several theater productions.
“Teddy is a great student who consistently maintains a positive attitude,” said Mr. Steve Parke, EASTERN’s Collision Repair Technology Instructor. “He has an impressive work ethic and communication skills. He is always willing to assist with events here at EASTERN. I am proud of all of his accomplishments.”
After graduation from EASTERN and Jenkintown High School, Theodore plans to attend Penn College of Technology in Williamsport, PA to continue his education in Collision Repair.
His instructor chose him to attend the Career and Technical Student Organization (CTSO) Leadership Conference in the Poconos in November 2022.
Theodore received the prestigious Director’s Award at EASTERN’s Awards Night ceremony in May 2023.
He is a first-degree black belt in Karate at Extreme Karate and Kickboxing.
This award is sponsored each month by EASTERN’s faculty, Joint Operating Committee, and the Willow Grove Rotary Club to highlight student excellence, success, and service. This month, Kenneth McKenzie, was selected. He is a senior at Abington Senior High School and is being honored for his work in EASTERN’s Protective Services program.
When Kenneth was in tenth grade at Abington Senior High School, he visited EASTERN. Before the visit, Kenneth knew that EASTERN was a career and technical high school that provided training in skilled trades. When he visited the Protective Services program, he knew this would be a great head start on his career in the military and emergency medicine.
In the community, Kenneth is a volunteer member at Second Alarmers Rescue Squad, a Junior Volunteer Firefighter at Abington Fire Company, and is in the Recruit Sustainment Program for the Army National Guard.
In February 2024, Kenneth will begin an internship at the Willow Grove Second Alarmer’s Association & Rescue Squad.
“Kenneth is organized, dedicated, and a role model for the class,” said Mr. Michael Raggi, EASTERN’s Protective Services Instructor. “He understands the value of volunteerism and truly wants to give back to his community. I am proud of his efforts and am thrilled to see him honored as EASTERN’s December Student of the Month.”
After graduation from EASTERN and Abington Senior High School, Kenneth will attend basic training and advanced individualized training for the Army National Guard. He then plans to attend postsecondary for a degree in public health/emergency medicine and to obtain his paramedic certification.
At EASTERN, Kenneth is on the Protective Services Occupational Advisory Committee as a student representative.
Kenneth is the Protective Services class Lieutenant, which is the highest rank.
As a junior, he received the Straight A Award at EASTERN’s Awards Night ceremony held in May 2023.
Kenneth has already obtained his Firefighter 1 certification.
This award is sponsored each month by EASTERN’s faculty, Joint Operating Committee, and the Willow Grove Rotary Club to highlight student excellence, success, and service. This month, Jacob Richards, was selected. He is a senior at Upper Moreland High School and is being honored for his work in EASTERN’s Welding Technology program.
Jacob already knew about some of the opportunities at EASTERN through his uncles who took Landscape Contracting several years ago.
When Jacob was in tenth grade, he attended an EASTERN presentation at Upper Moreland High School. One of the student speakers at that presentation was in the Welding Technology program, and he immediately wanted to learn more about the program. Welding was already an interest of Jacob’s, as his family has an at-home welding shop.
Since joining EASTERN's Welding Technology program as a junior, Jacob has seized every opportunity presented to him. He enjoys helping others and has found many ways to do so at EASTERN. As a junior, he volunteered as a Career Expo tour guide for potential EASTERN students. This year he volunteered as a student speaker at EASTERN’s Designer Bag Bingo fundraiser held in September.
Through his Welding Technology program, Jacob was recently approved for a paid internship at Albert C. Phy & Sons Precision Sheet Metal Fabrication in Willow Grove, where he will work as a TIG welder.
“Jacob is a dedicated and hardworking student,” said Ms. Meghan Cicchino, EASTERN’s Welding Technology Instructor. “He plans to go right into the industry and eventually build his own house. He is driven and focused, and always willing to help out a classmate or assist with a school fundraiser.”
After graduation, Jacob plans to begin his career as a welder.
His instructor chose him to attend the Career and Technical Student Organization (CTSO) Leadership Conference in November 2022
He was part of the Chapter Display Team that won a bronze medal at the SkillsUSA State Competition in April 2023
He was inducted into EASTERN’s first-ever National Technical Honor Society in May 2023
He was chosen as a paid intern to work on building improvements with EASTERN’s Facilities Manager and Electrical Technology instructor during the summer of 2023.
This year, Jacob was chosen as the student representative for the Welding Technology Occupational Advisory Committee -- a group of industry professionals who volunteer their time to work with EASTERN’s instructors and administration to keep EASTERN’s program cutting edge.
This award is sponsored each month by EASTERN’s faculty, Joint Operating Committee, and the Willow Grove Rotary Club to highlight student excellence, success, and service. This month Reese Fichter was selected. She is a senior at Upper Dublin High School and is being honored for her work in EASTERN’s Culinary Arts program.
- During the pandemic, Reese spent a lot of time in the kitchen baking with her grandmother. She found baking made her feel better and helped her get through that challenging time. She had a friend who was in EASTERN’s Allied Health program and told her that they also have a Culinary Arts program.
- Reese was selected by her instructors to attend the Career and Technical Student Organization Fall Leadership Conference in November 2022.
- At Upper Dublin High School, Reese enjoys being part of Upper Dublin’s Mini Thon program to raise money for pediatric cancer research.
- Outside of school, Reese works at Pennpack Mill as a catering server.
- “Reese is extremely motivated, and is always willing to help her peers,” said Chef Charlie Zachmann, EASTERN Culinary Arts Instructor. “She enjoys collaborating with other students and being involved in EASTERN activities and competitions. I am proud of all of her accomplishments.”
- After graduation, Reese is interested in Johnson and Wales University. She would like to learn more about the business side of the industry so that she can one day open her own bakery
- During her junior year, she was the student representative for EASTERN’s Culinary Arts Occupational Advisory Committee, and participated in a student focus group on improving student life at EASTERN.
- As a junior in the program, Reese emerged as a leader in the class and was nominated by the Culinary Arts Instructional Aide, Chef Nicole Suanlarm for a Women’s History Month student spotlight.
- In January 2023, Reese placed second in the SkillsUSA District 2 Competition in Job Demo A, where she demonstrated how to make Irish Potatoes.
- At EASTERN’s Awards Night in May 2023, Reese received the Director’s Award and the Straight A Award
- In May 2023, Reese was inducted into EASTERN’s first National Technical Honor Society.