For Immediate Release
Contact: Danielle N. Kobryn, email@example.com
Contributing Writer: Dr. Michael Shaw
FIRST NIAGARA FOUNDATION AWARDS $5000 GRANT TO ST. THOMAS AQUINAS COLLEGE IN SUPPORT OF “ENHANCING AND ENRICHING LITERACY ACROSS THE CURRICULUM” EVENTS
(August 14, 2013-SPARKILL, NY) – First Niagara Foundation recently awarded St. Thomas Aquinas College a $5,000 grant in support of the “Enhancing and Enriching Literacy Across the Curriculum” series of events for students, teachers, and community members, announced Dr. Michael Shaw, Professor of Education at St. Thomas, and coordinator of the event series.
“Literacy skills can be improved, but not without the proper staff development,” said Sara Tucker, First Vice President, Regional Team Leader, First Niagara. “First Niagara is proud to support a program that is putting professional development at the heart of its efforts through training teachers, as well as helping children through their literacy challenges.”
First Niagara Bank has nine branches in Rockland County, and their Foundation believes in supporting educational initiatives in the local communities they serve. One of their Foundation’s focus areas is Youth and Education, which ties into the three St. Thomas Aquinas College events this grant will support. The First Annual Arts Literacy Celebration on Saturday, September 28, 2013, is an initiative designed to recognize and restore arts education in the curriculum. The Celebration also includes a showcase of visiting artists who perform in schools.
The 18th Annual Rockland Literacy Extravaganza on Saturday, October 19, 2013, is a professional conference for practicing teachers and administrators, along with graduate and pre-service students. It focuses on teaching research-based best practices for achieving Common Core State Standards success in reading and writing across the curriculum, Pre-K through Grade 12.
The 18th Annual Rockland Storytelling Festival on Sunday, November 17, 2013 at Haverstraw King's Daughters Public Library, is a free event to support the joys of storytelling including presentations from recognized storytellers and hands-on arts and crafts projects for participants.
"I am so grateful that First Niagara is supporting our St. Thomas Aquinas College initiatives to ‘Enhance and Enrich Literacy Across the Curriculum’. These events enable us to provide the highest quality of professional development to teachers and pre-service teachers to enable students to successfully learn methods for teaching close reading and academic writing that will enable students to achieve Common Core State Standards success. The grant also enables us to focus on the importance of restoring arts education in schools that has been significantly cut back because of the overarching focus on year-long test preparation, including the joys of storytelling. First Niagara is making a very strong commitment to support enhancing and enriching literacy across the curriculum,” said Shaw.
About First Niagara
First Niagara, through its wholly owned subsidiary, First Niagara Bank, N.A., is a multi-state community-oriented bank with approximately 420 branches, approximately $37 billion in assets, $27 billion in deposits, and approximately 6,000 employees providing financial services to individuals, families and businesses across Upstate New York, Pennsylvania, Connecticut and Massachusetts. For more information, visit www.firstniagara.com.
About First Niagara Foundation
First Niagara Foundation is a not for profit corporation founded in 1998. The Foundation is committed to supporting organizations in the communities in which we live and work with specific focus on youth and education, community development and neighborhood revitalization. In 2012 the Foundation contributed more than $10 million in charitable grants to community partners. For more information, visit www.firstniagara.com/community.
For more information about the “Enhancing and Enriching Literacy” events series, contact Dr. Michael Shaw at 845-398-4079 or firstname.lastname@example.org. For more information about corporate giving, contact the Institutional Advancement Office at 845-398-4020.
St. Thomas Aquinas College is an independent liberal arts college located on 60 acres in Rockland County, NY which provides education at the undergraduate and graduate levels. The College’s 2,800 full and part time students can choose from more than 100 different majors, minors, specializations, and dual degree programs across three Schools: Arts & Sciences, Business, and Education. The College was recognized by U.S. News & World Report (2011 & 2012) in the Top-Tier for Regional Universities, by Colleges of Distinction in both its New York and Catholic editions, by Affordable Colleges Online as a top College in New York for Return on Investment, and is included as a Military Friendly School®. St. Thomas Aquinas College is accredited by the Middle States Association of Colleges and Schools; its School of Education is accredited by National Council for Accreditation of Teacher Education (NCATE); and its School of Business is accredited by the International Assembly for Collegiate Business Education (IACBE). For more information, visit www.stac.edu.