Contact Information
Director: Susan Altman
Email: celt@middlesexcc.edu
Location: Center 1
 Contact Information
Director: Susan Altman
Email: celt@middlesexcc.edu
Location: Center 1

Faculty Award Recipients

Iris Ramer, MCC Faculty Scholar 2018

Iris Ramer is a tenured professor of ESL at Middlesex County College in Edison, NJ, where she has been teaching for over thirty years.  Dr. Ramer’s academic credentials include a B.A. from Inter-American University of Puerto Rico, an M.A. from New York University, and a D.Litt. from Drew University.  Her recent work has included being the Keynote Speaker at Puerto Rico TESOL (November 2014) and participating in Columbia University’s Wise Institute (April 2016).  In addition, she presented her research connected to teaching ESL with an integrated curriculum approach at the Innovations Conference in Baltimore, MD in March 2018.  Prof. Ramer is a member of National/International TESOL, The Fulbright Association, The Princeton Forum Theater and the Princeton YWCA.  She is a community activist for local food and clothing banks, is a member of the Compassionate Community Committee at The Jewish Center in Princeton, and supports scholarship efforts with the Princeton /Parramos Partnership Committee at the Nassau Presbyterian Church.  She is the author of Read Now and Write Now, and the recently published book Manny’s Journey which follows the life of a fictional ESL student, Manny Garcia, as he faces the challenge of learning English and adapting to life in the United States.  Dr. Ramer has presented her work at state, national, and international levels, and has been a Mid-Career Fellow of Princeton University.

Melissa Luis, MCC Excellence in Teaching 2018

Dr. Melissa Luis is the Coordinator for the Education Degree Program since 2014 and has been teaching education and psychology courses at MCC since 2013. She is also the Advisor to the award winning Alpha Theta Zeta chapter of Kappa Delta Pi International Honor Society in Education. Dr. Luis obtained her Ph.D. in Educational Psychology, Professional Diploma in School Psychology, and Masters in Education from Fordham University. She obtained her BA in Psychology from Syracuse University. Dr. Luis is passionate about learning and uses student-centered teaching and advising approaches in her work. She has co-presented and co-published an article on cognitive processes related to learning and strives to demonstrate how to use effective teaching strategies to enhance deeper-level thinking and increase student engagement and interest.

Dr. Luis began her career in education in 1997 as a teacher’s aid in an inclusive preschool in Syracuse, NY. Observing and working with teachers who were nurturing, enthusiastic, and created a welcoming environment for all children, were the impetus for her career pursuits. She would later become a School Psychologist for the New York City Department of Education and Related Service Provider and Case Manager for severely disabled preschool children. Her passion for student success, equity in education, and advocacy for students with disabilities were, and still are, her mottoes.

Laura DeCillis, MCC Excellence in Teaching Part Time 2018

Laura De Cillis is a Professional Licensed Social Worker serving both the greater New York and New Jersey Areas. She is the Founder of Angelaura, ltd. Her philosophy resides on engaging each child in a caring and respectful fashion in the comforts of his/her own sur- roundings. Her work includes, but is not limited to, play, art, talk, and creative therapies, with her focus and mission constant: listen and guide each child toward reaching his/her greatest potential.

Ms. De Cillis graduated from Livingston College, Rutgers The State University of New Jersey, with a Bachelor of Arts in Social Work. After graduating, she was sponsored for an intensive bioethics certification program at The Joseph and Rose Kennedy Institute of Ethics at Georgetown University. Upon completion, she began an advanced standing program at Silver School of Social Work (formerly Shirley M. Ehrenkranz School of Social Work), New York University, New York earning a Masters in Social Work. Throughout her past experiences, education, and continued extensive volunteer ventures the at- mosphere she provides for each child is overflowing with empathy and compassion.

Since 2000, Ms. De Cillis has been an integral part of the History and Social Sciences Department at Middlesex County College as an Ad- junct Professor. She has taught an array of courses beginning with Sociology off campus in the Charles Gregory Nursing Program, then continuing on campus with Marriage and the Family, Contemporary Social Problems, Psychology of Death and Dying, Psychology, Child Psychology, Lifespan Development, Community and Agency Coun- seling and Counseling Theories and Techniques. She continues to bring her life experiences into the class room making each en- counter with her students subtle yet impactful; if a student believes in his/her self the sky is the limit.

In 2014, Ms. De Cillis began volunteering in the Mentoring Program through the Center for the Enrichment of Learning and Teaching (CELT) and in 2013, she was appointed as a new member of the Council for Adjunct Faculty Development (CAFD).

Previous Award Recipients: