Naugatuck Valley Community College inducted three new students into the prestigious President’s Circle during a November 2 ceremony held in the Technology Hall Dining Room. Inductees have a minimum GPA of 3.4 and they represent a select group of outstanding achievers who serve as the College’s student ambassadors. This year, inductees had a cumulative GPA of just over 3.7. President’s Circle ambassadors have the opportunity to attend major college events with the President and/or her Cabinet and lend voice to their experiences as NVCC students. Student Ambassadors directly engage with community leaders, officials, alumni, and friends through provided platforms. Through their membership, students make connections, build networks, and further their roles as active citizens and leaders. Circle membership is not based solely on academic achievement. Candidates must also demonstrate strength of character, resilience to challenges, and a commitment to the community and NVCC.
President Daisy Cocco De Filippis welcomed and congratulated the high-achieving inductees and reminded them about the importance of “continuing to transform yourself and others.”
Assistant Professor of English Chris Rempfer, talked about the qualities that good leaders aspire to in a heart-warming keynote address that mixed reflections about his own personal journey as a student, artist, and educator.
“Leaders say ‘yes’ and leaders learn,” Rempfer said while sharing that sometimes, “when you are asked to lead, you are going to be asked to do things, you’ve never done before. You have to trust yourself and you have to trust your ‘yes,’ and you have to allow the process of leading to also lead you.”
John Williams, a Digital Arts Technology (DAT) student is a member of the DAT club, and taking six courses while continuing his work as a night-shift EMT. Last summer, Williams obtained internships at two major Connecticut media organizations, Connecticut Public Television (CPTV) and Newtown, CT’s Charter Spectrum. Williams says his near-term goals are to secure a job at either ESPN or NBC Sports working in in cinematography, editing, or production.
“Commit yourself to something bigger than yourself,” Williams said encouraging his fellow students live up to the mantra he’s chosen to live by.
Full-time student Ingrid Taveras is majoring in Cybersecurity. Her goal is to prepare herself not only for success while a student at NVCC, but also for the four certifications she plans to obtain to help launch her career. Certifications in A+ certification, Network+, Security+, and Ethical Hacker, she explains, will help better prepare her for the competitive field she will soon enter. “My goal is to become a more well-rounded and confident leader as student ambassador, while continuing to develop skills for my professional and student career. My goal is to work as best I can to not only help myself succeed, but to also inspire and motivate others,” said Taveras noting her experience in the President’s Circle thus far has been “inspiring and refreshing.”
The third inductee, Irisa Hoxha, is majoring in accounting. Her goal is to pass the CPA exam and have her own license so that she can eventually become a counselor advising clients on personal budgets and how to save money wisely. Along with her studies, Hoxha spends time on campus as a student worker for the Center for Academic Planning and Student Success (CAPSS). She is also treasurer of Phi Theta Kappa (the national honor society for two-year college students). Hoxha is also president of the Personal Finance Club, and part of the staff of NVCC’s student newspaper, The Tamarack.
“President’s Circle is a great recognition for the students who push themselves out of their comfort zone and invest in their personal growth along with their academic development. To me, it is a great reminder of how the effort pays off when you do what you love and love what you do." she said.
High-achieving students wishing to serve as President’s Circle ambassadors for NVCC can apply in the spring. Applications are available online or at the main desk of the NVCC Library in Room L523.