Congratulations to Thomas Laskowski and Carly Spinnler, PCTI’s May Athletes of the Month!

Thomas Laskowski is a third year varsity letter winner who:

As junior on the Boys’ spring track team, he led the Bulldogs weight team with amazing marks in the Javelin event and set a school record with a throw of 176’10”, earning a Big North Liberty Division first place finish (165’4”). Eventually, Thomas received a first place All-County finish in the Javelin (176’7”) for all his hard work. He moved on to the state sectional where he threw his personal best in the event: 176’10”, breaking the school record and taking first place in North 1 Group 4. Thomas would eventually be named to the First Team All Big North Liberty Division for Javelin and as First Team All-County in Javelin. He was also nominated to Second Team All-North Jersey by and the Record Sports.

Carly Spinnler is a third year varsity letter winner who:

During the month of May on the Girls’ spring track team, she led the Lady Bulldogs sprint team with amazing marks in League Championships with a 1st place in the 400 M (1:01.21), a 1st place in the 800 M (2:26.75), and a 1st place in the 400 M Hurdles (1:06.67). Her success was clearly noted in the County Championship where she earned a 1st place in the 800​ M (2:17.37) and a 1st place in the 400 M Hurdles - 1:05.40. In the State Sectionals, Carly finished in 2nd place in the 800 M (2:19.12) and 2nd place in the 400 M Hurdles (1:05.2). She eventually qualified for Group finals. Carly was selected to the First-Team All-Big North Liberty Division Honors and to First Team All-County Honors.

Casey Creazzo of the School of Culinary Arts recently competed against high school students at Monroe College in New Rochelle, NY for the coveted title of America’s Best High School Pastry Chef. She took home the grand prize, earning the title and a full tuition scholarship for the AAS Baking and Pastry Arts Program at Monroe College.

Casey’s award winning dessert featured warm chocolate cake with salted caramel sauce, passionfruit sorbet, coconut tuile, triple sec soaked blood orange segments, and passion fruit and blood orange gels.

Congratulations on achieving this phenomenal win!

PCTI student Casey Creazzo (right) stands with PCTI alumna, last year’s winner, and current Monroe College student, Julie Velasquez (left) after being named America’s Best High School Pastry Chef for 2017.

Diana Deonate

Diana Deonate is a young woman from Paterson who has always been fascinated with solving puzzles in the literal and figurative sense. “I used to do lot of those in youth, but I would never look at the picture on the box. It was figuring things out on my own that I really enjoyed.”

It’s no surprise that this young woman’s penchant for abstract thinking has carried through to her educational pursuits. As a member of the Academy of Criminal Justice & Public Safety, Diana aims to use her problem solving capabilities to help the wrongfully accused, by embracing a career as a lawyer.

She’s well on her way to achieving her dream. Diana currently holds a position with Batista Law Office in Clifton. Through PCTI’s STC program, she works twenty hours a week. The job has allowed Diana to use her bilingual talents to communicate effectively with clients. “Working under a lawyer and municipal judge gave me a real taste of the legal system,” she says. “It’s like my third home, with PCTI being my second.”

Amidst a packed schedule, Diana is also involved in numerous activities, including Mock Trial, ERASE, and Book Club. She is a Certified Dispatcher and is CPR Certified. Additionally, Diana has been selected for the World Language Honor Society.

It comes as no surprise that this Bulldog ranks in the top four percent of her class with a GPA of 4.19. She also has the potential to graduate with fifteen college credits.

Diana has worked hard to achieve her dreams. She’s already earned full rides to Fairleigh Dickinson University, Felician College, and William Paterson University. She’s also been accepted to Seton Hall and Rutgers University.

Whatever university she chooses, Diana’s goal is the same; she will pursue a Bachelor of Science in Legal Studies and will eventually attend Law School.

When asked what direction her life will take after all that education, Diana says, “I enjoy Criminal Law so maybe I’ll become a Prosecutor.”

While Diana is direct in her academic pursuits, she is equally clear on what she values. In short, it’s finding out the truth. “Ever since coming to PCTI, I’ve realized that you need to personally do the research to reach your own conclusions. It’s important to think for yourself and question everything.”

This particular quality will serve her well in her career endeavors. Congratulations Diana, a young woman who knows the value of hard work!


  • Ranks in the top 4% of her class
  • Will graduate with a potential 15 college credits
  • Certified Dispatcher and licensed in CPR
  • Involved in Mock Trial, ERASE, & Book Club; selected for WLHS
  • Holds job at Batista Law Office
  • Goal: Graduate from a university with a Bachelor of Science degree in Legal Studies, attend Law School, become a Prosecutor

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Grace Khezam

Grace Khezam is a resident of Totowa who transferred to Passaic County Technical Institute as a sophomore. Her reason? “I wasn’t being as challenged as much I wanted to be in high school. PCTI offered more opportunities for me to excel and grow.”

As a member of the Academy of Information Technology, Grace believes that becoming proficient in tasks such as web design and coding will help her secure a successful future. “Right now, I can get a job making websites,” she says.

Grace is involved in numerous school activities, including Concert Band, Marching Band, LEAP, and the Environmental Club. She was also selected for the Tri-M Music Honor Society and serves as the Co-Vice President of the Class of 2017. With a GPA of 3.94, Grace ranks in the top ten percent of her class and has earned Principal’s Honor Roll status. She has the potential to graduate with seventeen college credits.

Outside of PCTI, she is a gymnast, has worked as a life guard (and is CPR certified), and has volunteered with organizations that include St. Joseph’s Regional Medical Center, the Special Olympics, at her local public library, and in Marching Band parades. Within the past year, she’s accumulated more than sixty service hours in an area she’s truly passionate about: Dentistry.

As a volunteer at Dental2000, Grace shadows dentists and hygienists, sterilizes instruments, and communicates effectively with patients. “I’ve always been interested in biology and the medical arts, so getting this opportunity allowed me to gain experience in a career I want to pursue.”

It was Grace’s proactive approach - of going after what she wants in life - that allowed her to discover her passion.

As far as life after graduation is concerned, Grace has already been accepted into Pennsylvania State University, Pace University, Temple University, Arcadia University, and Fairleigh Dickinson University. She will pursue her Bachelor of Science degree in Biology and will later attend dental school.

When asked how she’s grown from her time as a sophomore to a senior, Grace had this to say, “I’ve been working on building my character and really going after what I want.” This ambitious quality ensures that Grace actively seeks out opportunities in every area of her life.

One thing’s for certain, Grace has grown exponentially in her three years at PCTI. Congratulations and best of luck in the future!


  • Ranks in the top 10% of her class
  • Will graduate with a potential 17 college credits
  • Selected for Tri-M Honor Society
  • Member of Concert Band, Marching Band, LEAP, & Environmental Club
  • Co-Vice President of the Class of 2017
  • Goal: Graduate from a university with a Bachelor of Science degree in Biology, enroll in dental school, become a Dentist

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Anaya Gass, Quashierra Muhammad, and Nicole Arakaki have been selected to receive Governor’s Awards for their outstanding achievements in the arts.

School of Performing Arts Dance students Anaya Gass, Quashierra Muhammad, and Nicole Arakaki have been selected by NJPAC to receive Governor’s Awards for outstanding achievements in the arts. Anaya has been honored with the Student Award for Artistic Excellence and Leadership in Dance, Quashierra will be receiving the Governor’s Award for Exceptional Promise in Theater Arts, and Nicole Arakaki has been honored with the Governor’s Award for Excellence in Dance!

The New Jersey Governor’s Awards in Arts Education began in 1980 to promote awareness and appreciation of the arts. The foundation recognizes the creativity, talent and leadership of New Jersey students and educators.

Anaya, Quashierra, and Nicole will receive their honors at the Governor’s Arts Awards Ceremony on Wednesday May 24th in Trenton. Congratulations!

Scott Boorman

Scott Boorman is a young man from Wayne whose unmatched intellect has ensured a successful high school career as part of PCTI’s School of Engineering Technology. A passion for science, technology, as well as figuring out how things work, has led Scott to discover a prospective future career in Aerospace Engineering. “I find the problem solving process gratifying. Additionally, working in an industry that deals with space travel and rockets would be interesting,” he says.

He certainly has the drive to achieve his dreams. Scott ranks in the top six percent of his class with a cumulative GPA of 4.11. Such a stellar academic performance is largely due to Scott’s interest in challenging himself by taking numerous honors and AP courses. His scholastic prowess has been recognized with the AP Scholar with Honor Award. This distinction is reserved for those who receive an average of 3.25 on all AP Exams with scores 3 or higher on four or more on their exams. Scott has the potential to graduate from PCTI with at least twenty-seven college credits!

This intelligent Bulldog is much more than his academics. He’s on the Boys Bowling team and as a member of the Engineering Club, has competed and placed in multiple PCCC robotics competitions. As a junior, Scott was selected to participate in New Jersey Boys State. He even volunteered his time this past summer to mentor 7th and 8th grade students of PCTI’s Summer STEM Academy. The activity combined his passion for Engineering with kindling the same interest in community youths.

When it comes to his future studies, Scott has everything figured out. He was accepted to all the universities on his list, including New York University, Stevens Institute of Technology, and the New Jersey Institute of Technology. Scott chose to attend the latter when he was accepted into the school’s Albert Dorman Honors College - a prestigious program that earned him a full academic scholarship for his postsecondary education. He seeks to attain a Bachelor of Science in Mechanical Engineering and may one day pursue a Master’s degree. Scott’s greatest desire is to enter the Aerospace Engineering field and to further explore the prospects of interspace travel. “I look forward to designing plans from start to finish,” he adds.

One thing’s for certain, Scott’s scientific curiosity is sure to pave the way to new worlds. Congratulations to this inventive Bulldog. You’re bound to find infinite success!


  • Ranks in the top 6% of his class
  • Will graduate with a potential 27 college credits
  • Selected for NJ Boys State
  • Recipient of the distinguished AP Scholar Award
  • Earned full Academic Scholarship to NJIT’s Honors College program
  • Goal: Graduate from NJIT with a Bachelor of Science in Mechanical Engineering, pursue a career in Aerospace Engineering

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Karly Inserra

Karly Inserra is a passionate young woman pursuing an education in PCTI’s Academy of Medical Arts program. Hailing from Hawthorne, Karly says that she’s always wanted to be involved in the medical field. “It’s something I’ve always known and PCTI provided the perfect opportunity for me to get involved and discover what I enjoy.”

For Karly, that means working with the elderly. During her junior year, she volunteered at Regency Gardens as part of the Academy of Medical Arts curriculum. This experience led Karly to discover her future career - becoming a Registered Nurse.

“It combines personally connecting with others and helping them,” she adds.

Karly is an outstanding student who ranks in the top two percent of her class. During her first year, she was selected for the Freshmen Foundation for Success, - which celebrates the top ten students with the best GPAs in the Class of 2017. She’s achieved Principal’s Honor Roll throughout her entire high school career and currently boasts a GPA of 4.37! Karly has taken numerous AP and honors courses and has the potential to graduate with thirty-three college credits. She’s also a CNA, is Basic Life Support certified, and is working towards her EMT certification.

Amidst a packed academic schedule, Karly has participated in HOSA and Gifted and Talented. She’s an avid athlete and is known for playing Soccer and Lacrosse - both at the varsity level. She currently serves as captain of the Girls Lacrosse team. Still, Karly manages to hold a part-time job at Shop Rite where she works an average of sixteen hours a week.

She credits much of her impeccable time management skills to her PCTI education. “There are so many opportunities. If you want to take advantage of them all, then you have to learn how to prioritize everything.”

After graduation, Karly will attend William Paterson University to receive her Bachelor of Science Degree in Nursing, eventually working towards her RN licensure. She anticipates gaining work experience and will later go back to school to become a Nurse Practitioner.

When asked what the best thing about PCTI is, Karly says, “I love the idea of having different programs to choose from. There’s a sense of belonging, and I’ve made a lot of good friends who’ve helped me improve.”

Congratulations Karly on your all your successes and best of luck in the future!


  • Ranks in the top 2% of her class
  • Will graduate with a potential 33 college credits
  • Licensed CNA & Basic Life Support certified
  • Selected for Freshmen Foundation for Success
  • Involved in HOSA & Gifted and Talented, Captain of Girls Varsity Lacrosse, plays on Girls Varsity Soccer team
  • Goal: Graduate from William Paterson University with a Bachelor of Science degree in Nursing, work towards RN licensure, become a Nurse Practitioner

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