Moon Township, Pa. – A dedicated young teacher from Bethel Park who has worked in classrooms in McKeesport and Aruba has won Robert Morris University’s most prestigious undergraduate award.
The 2009 Robert Morris University (RMU) Presidential Transformational Award will go to Nicole L. Bazner.
This award is given annually to a graduating student who has been transformed by his or her experience at RMU and has also contributed to the transformation of the university in a meaningful way. The recipient epitomizes the RMU experience through active and engaged learning, academic excellence, leadership and community service.
Bazner is graduating with a bachelor of science in elementary education with a concentration in mathematics. She has maintained a 4.0 GPA in her major and has a cumulative GPA of 3.89. Bazner is a 2005 graduate of Bethel Park High School.
“I’m very proud to bestow this award on Nicole, who already has demonstrated an intense devotion to her chosen profession,” said RMU President Gregory G. Dell’Omo. “She has also been a role model for her fellow students and given freely of her time to community service. She represents what is best about RMU.”
While enrolled in a senior level education course, Bazner successfully organized lesson plans and activities for 25 students at the George Washington Elementary School in McKeesport. Her ideas, activities and lesson plans were so well done that the school implemented them.
Bazner now serves as a student teacher liaison for the course and continues to work closely with the instructor at the elementary school. Her teaching also took her to Aruba where she completed an eight-week international teaching experience.
While working diligently on her studies, Bazner has also been engaged in the university community. She has served as a tutor in the Center for Student Success, a resident assistant, and co-taught the First Year Experience Seminar, a course especially designed for incoming freshmen.
Bazner served as president of RMU’s chapter of Alpha Chi National College Honor Society and treasurer of the National Society of Collegiate Scholars at RMU. This past year, Bazner founded a new student organization on campus, the RMU Educators Advocating Literacy, or REAL. Bazner volunteered to serve as vice president for the nascent organization, recruiting students, holding fundraisers, and implementing a literacy service project. She was involved in numerous community service projects and was actively involved in the RMU chapter of Big Brothers Big Sisters.
Bazner has been named to the dean’s list for eight consecutive semesters, earned the RMU Women of Achievement Award in 2008, received the Alpha Chi Honor Society Davis Award for Service and the Dean’s Scholar Award in the School of Education and Social Sciences.
“I love RMU,” said Bazner. “The Elementary Education Department is fabulous. I don’t look at them as professors. They are more like family. I got close to the student life staff and the resident life staff. Everyone is just so friendly.”