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JCC Student One of Four Honorees Statewide to Receive Vanguard Award

Jefferson Community College (JCC) student Megan V. Donato (on right) of Watertown is the recipient of a 2016 Vanguard Award. Administered by the New York State Nontraditional Employment and Training Project and the Center for Women in Government and Civil Society, the Vanguard Award recognizes outstanding secondary level students who are enrolled in career and technical education programs that are not traditional, fewer than 25% of the total employed, for their gender. The Vanguard Award was bestowed to four students of postsecondary education across New York State at the Association for Career and Technical Education Conference held in March in Albany.

Donato graduated from Jefferson in May 2016 with an associate in science (A.S.) degree in engineering and an A.S. degree in mathematics and science with a concentration in mathematics. While a student at Jefferson, Donato applied knowledge learned in the classroom to real world applications as a student worker in the Center for Community Studies (CCS). She participated in qualitative methods of data collection for the annual survey of Lewis County and alongside CCS research director Joel F. LaLone, presented to the Lewis County Board of Legislators. She says “the opportunity to work at the Center gets me ahead of other students and reassures there is a place for me in the field of mathematics.” With a 3.4 grade point average, nearly every semester at Jefferson Donato was named to President’s or Dean’s Lists. She earned first place in the New York State Mathematics Association of Two Year Colleges and received the 2016 Outstanding Engineering Student and Outstanding Mathematics Student Awards. President of the JCC engineering club, Donato participated in the Clarkson Robot Mentoring program for Northern New York Robotics Academy along with the FIRST Lego League Challenge held at Clarkson University.

Donato plans to transfer to Syracuse University in the fall to continue her education in applied mathematics, the next step towards pursuing a career in market research and/or data analysis.

The Vanguard Award is sponsored by the New York State Education Department through a Carl D. Perkins grant.