RVCC Graduate Receives Paralegal Studies Award

Raritan Valley Community College (RVCC) graduate Jo-Ann M. Petruzziello is the recipient of the Baker & Rannells Paralegal Studies Student Graduate Award.

Petruzziello, a resident of Warren, was presented with the honor at RVCC’s Academic Awards Ceremony, held May 13 at the College’s Branchburg Campus. The award was established by Baker & Rannells, PA, a Raritan-based law firm that specializes in intellectual property, trademark and copyright law.

The award honors an RVCC student graduating with an Associate of Applied Science or a Certificate in Paralegal Studies who has demonstrated not only academic excellence, but also a commitment to service combined with an ethic of justice, fairness and integrity, according to James F. Nielsen, Jr., the firm’s Business Operations and Development Manager.

“The firm has hired a number of RVCC graduates from the Paralegal Studies program and has benefited from the good education that the College provides. The award is our way of thanking RVCC,” said Nielsen, who presented the $500 prize to Petruzziello at the May ceremony.

Petruzziello was previously employed as a 911 dispatcher in Bridgewater Township and is currently the Deputy Zoning Officer in Branchburg Township. She earned a 3.91 grade point average out of a possible 4.0 in the Paralegal Studies Certificate program and is a member of the Phi Theta Kappa Honor Society.

RVCC’s Paralegal Studies Certificate Program is designed for students who already have received, or are in the process of obtaining, an Associate Degree or a Baccalaureate Degree in a field of study other than paralegal studies. The 24-credit Certificate program allows students to obtain a paralegal education in a timely and cost-effective manner. It also helps students to meet the requirements of potential employers, a large number of whom require both a college degree and a paralegal certificate as hiring standards.

RVCC’s Paralegal Studies Associate of Applied Science Degree, a 62-credit program, is offered through the Business and Public Service Department, whose mission is to provide challenging, career-oriented undergraduate programs to business and public service students, educating them to the level of competency needed for successful transfer to four-year institutions or immediate career path entry.

RVCC’s Paralegal Studies program is approved by the American Bar Association and includes courses in all areas of the legal profession, with specialized courses in such areas as research and writing, litigation, real estate and family law. Faculty members are practicing attorneys or paralegals, each teaching in his or her area of expertise. For additional information about the program, contact Maria M. DeFilippis, Esq., Coordinator of Paralegal Studies at RVCC, 908-526-1200, ext. 8239 or Maria.DeFilippis@raritanval.edu.

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Mission Statement:
Raritan Valley Community College is an educational community that works to develop critical thinking, foster intellectual curiosity, promote leadership, encourage social responsibility, support personal growth, and sustain engaged citizenship within a diverse population of students and community members.
Diversity Statement:
Raritan Valley Community College values all aspects of diversity including but not limited to race, sexual orientation, religion, age, sex, national origin, disability, socioeconomic status, and political and philosophical perspectives. We rely on diversity to enrich the intellectual environment for students and employees. We support educational access and opportunity by recruiting and retaining a diverse college community. We foster diversity by developing and maintaining curricular and social programs that infuse the contributions of all people, and by preparing students to excel in a global society. Our commitment to diversity is reflected in the College’s Mission Statement and Strategic Goals, all of which support excellence in teaching, learning and professional development in a welcoming and respectful climate.
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• RVCC is an open admission institution with high standards and excellent support services.
• RVCC serves as an important center for our community.
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• RVCC must provide support for student success, but students are responsible for their own achievements.
• The College values the diversity of our communities as a resource that strengthens the institution.
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