PORT EWEN – Two of Ulster BOCES Career & Technical Center 2020 graduates received the prestigious “Triple C” award from New York State Attorney General Letitia James, in recognition of courage, commitment, and character. Brooke Harris, a graduate of the Aviation/Drone program, and Malachai Bridge, a graduate of the Criminal Justice program, are this year’s recipients.
For more than 20 years, the Office of the Attorney General has celebrated many of New York’s most remarkable young people with the presentation of this award—which recognizes a student’s courage in meeting challenges ahead; a commitment to bettering themselves, their school, and community; and their strength of character in achieving their goals.
“This year, whether you chose it or not, your generation has been cast in the role of a trailblazer. From expanding the boundaries of online learning to finding creative ways to connect and bond with your peers, to accepting the tremendous responsibility of keeping your family, friends, and communities safe by social distancing; you have already changed the world. There is no limit to what you will achieve next,” wrote James.
Brooke Harris is from the Highland Central School District. She was nominated by her teacher, Angelica Dickerson. “Brooke has stood out from her peers through her academic prowess, work ethic, and altruistic tendencies. Anytime another student is not understanding the material, she always goes out of her way to work with them until they understand. Whenever a student is absent from class, she doesn’t just give them a copy of her notes, she also explains the material to ensure that they aren’t falling behind,” said Dickerson.
Brooke was a National Technical Honor Society member, was elected to the Ulster BOCES Senior Council, the Ulster BOCES Requirement team, and served as Program Ambassador for the Aviation program. “Brooke is without a doubt the most responsible, diligent, aspirational student in my class, whose exceptional character and dedication make her a wonderful candidate for this award,” Dickerson added.
Malachai Bridge hails from the Kingston City School District. He was nominated by his teacher, Esi Lewis. “Malachai has shown tremendous growth,” she said. “He is a consistent leader in his class and the community.”
Malachai is a sergeant in the senior Criminal Justice (CRJ) class and a cadet in the Ulster County Sheriff’s Explorers Program. He is a member of the Positive Intervention Team at the Center for Innovative Teaching & Learning at Port Ewen. He also designed and coordinated the ordering of class shirts for all juniors and seniors in the Criminal Justice Program at the Career & Technical Center. On many occasions, Malachai has been asked to represent career and technical education at BOCES wide meetings and contribute to the school’s newsletters. Earlier this year, Malachai started working at Walmart. He was already promoted and asked to lead a security team.
“Malachai Bridge is a hard-working professional. He pushed me to be an innovative and holistic lead learner. I am so proud of his progress and look forward to being his colleague in the criminal justice field,” added Lewis.
Kathryn Flanagan, a school counselor at Ulster BOCES CTE, echoed the praise of the students’ teachers. “Brooke and Malachai are both outstanding examples of what displaying leadership looks like. Their behavior was always a positive example for other students. They are both exemplar students and examples of students who display courage, commitment, and positive character.”