Eldad Cano

Eldad Cano is a young man from Paterson who is fascinated by the endless possibilities provided by PCTI. In order to become a successful and productive member of today’s society, Eldad has taken advantage of numerous opportunities while in high school. This member of the School of Applied Technology enjoys the fruits of self-betterment, especially when it comes to embracing the qualities he’s cultivated as a leader.

Eldad has been a member of the NJROTC since he was a freshman. His decision to join was based on the fact that he participated in a Police Academy program while in middle school. “The NJROTC was nothing like I thought it would be - it was better. I’m glad that I ended up joining.” For the past four years, Eldad has climbed the ranks to become the NJROTC’s Executive Officer. This second in command position provides Eldad with opportunity to shoulder a great deal of responsibility. He explains, “My greatest joy is opening the channels of communication between myself and others. It’s important that every student has a voice and that they’re heard.”

Eldad ranks in the top seven percent of his class with a GPA of 4.05. His enrollment in countless AP and honors courses has earned him a potential nineteen credits towards his academic future.

Eldad is involved in numerous PCTI activities, including the History Club, Environmental Club, ERASE, and the ASL Club. He was even selected for the National Honor Society and the World Language Honor Society. Outside of high school, Eldad works as a server at Johnny Rockets, and has been a CoOp ACAD Engineer for JoeMax Telecom LLC as well as Michael Raiser Associates. However, it is his volunteer work with St. Joseph’s Hospital which unveiled new talents and educational prospects for the future.

“I’ve always enjoyed the subjects of biology and math and working in a hospital allows me to solve new mysteries every day.” Eldad further explained that the parallel between the School of Applied Technology and the health field is a simple one. “I like making sure projects are structurally sound. With people, it’s the healing experience.”

Eldad seeks to begin an education in Pre-Med and will eventually earn a doctorate. This determined Bulldog has applied early decision to his dream school of NYU, as well as to Rutgers, Keane, Ramapo, Boston University, and Pennsylvania State University.

Congratulations to this man on a mission. Best of luck!


  • Ranks in the top 7% of his class
  • Executive Officer of NJROTC
  • Drill Team competitor: Unarmed Basic, Armed Basic, & Color Guard; earned many awards
  • Selected for National Honor Society and World Language Honor Society
  • Member of History Club, Environmental Club, ERASE, and ASL Club
  • Co-Op ACAD Engineer with Michael Raiser Associates
  • Volunteers at St. Joseph’s Regional Medical Center
  • Accumulated more than 100 hours of community service
  • Goal: Enter the Pre-Med track and graduate from a university; eventually earn a degree in medicine

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Alexa Mazzoccoli

Alexa Mazzoccoli has always had a passion for makeup and hair. “It’s all about making people feel beautiful,” she says. This young woman from North Haledon prides herself on bringing joy to others, especially as a member of PCTI’s School of Cosmetology.

Much of Alexa’s time has been spent training towards her Cosmetology permit, which takes six hundred hours to complete. She gains her experience, and so much more, by working in PCTI’s full-service salon. Come May, Alexa will have the opportunity to take the NJ State Board Exam to receive her Cosmetology License.

High school has been a busy time for Alexa. She was inducted into the World Language Honor Society and has applied for the National Honor Society. Among her in-school involvement in ERASE, Yearbook Club, and the Environmental Club, as well as being selected for the Circle of Success, Alexa is quite the community volunteer. Her free time is spent teaching students as the Safety Town Instructor, donating her time to her local Goodwill store, aiding with the North Haledon 5K Run, and fundraising for her local church. Alexa cites that some of her most influential volunteer work was with PCTI events. “I’m a freshmen mentor and help out at Open House and the Saturday Academy,” she says. During the latter, Alexa led a cosmetology class as a student-instructor. The experience was a profound one; she even wrote her college essay on the subject!

Despite a busy schedule, Alexa maintains her 4.1 GPA and ranks in the top five percent of her class. She’s even managed to submit all her college applications - a total of six - by October! In addition, Alexa has working experience as an administrative assistant with the New World Sales company.

This senior is truly undaunted by the future, which is likely due to her top notch organizational skills and her flair for productivity. Alexa has already decided on her educational path after graduation. “I want to study Business and Marketing and incorporate what I’ve learned at PCTI.” She further explained that she looks forward to eventually working for a well-known cosmetics company.

When asked about her high school accomplishments, Alexa cited that’s she proud to have come out of her shell. Her engagement in the PCTI community allowed her to break out of that fabled comfort zone.

“It’s also been a longstanding dream of mine to be named Student of the Month,” Alexa gushes, positively beaming. “I’m glad to have finally achieved it!”

Congratulations to this deserving young woman. Keep achieving your dreams!


  • Ranked in the top 5% of his class
  • Working towards receiving Cosmetology License
  • Selected for Circle of Success & World Language Honor Society
  • Member of ERASE, Yearbook Club, & Environmental Club
  • Volunteers as Safety Town Instructor, at Goodwill store, during 5K Run events, fundraises for local church
  • Goal: Graduate from a university with a degree in Business/ Marketing; work in sales for a well-known cosmetics company

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PCTI seniors Scott Boorman, Christopher Valencia, and Aleksey Strekalov showcase their recently received AP Scholar Awards.

Outstanding accomplishments on the AP exams saw that three PCTI students were recognized with AP Scholar Awards. Aleksey Strekalov and Scott Boorman both earned the AP Scholar with Honor–a recognition reserved for those who receive an average of 3.25 on all AP Exams and scores 3 or higher on four or more on their exams. Christopher Valencia was honored with the AP Scholar with Distinction award, which is granted to those who achieve the outstanding feat of receiving an average score of at least 3.5 on all AP Exams with scores of 3 or higher on five or more of their exams.

The AP Scholar Awards are academic distinctions that students can cite among their credentials on applications and resumes. Congratulations to all!

Tiamera Ellen

Tiamera Ellen intuitively knew her calling in life before even entering the halls of PCTI. This animated Passaic native spent much of her time creating mock book covers with a free version of Photoshop. Well, she certainly picked the right place to be. Tiamera found the perfect home as a member the Graphic Arts program of the School of Communication Arts.

This organized Bulldog is one half of the Co-op team for the Communications Department. Tiamera’s keen eye for design has greatly contributed to the success of numerous projects. With a GPA of 4.24 and ranking in the top three percent of the Class of 2017, she’s certainly on top of her game! Through taking AP and honors courses, she’s accumulated a potential twenty-seven college credits to be used towards her academic future!

Her career area is not the only place where she shines. Tiamera is the acting President for both the Class of 2017 and the Book Club. Not only was she selected for the National Honor Society, but she’s also the Corresponding Secretary. Additionally, Tiamera is a member of PCTI’s chapter of LMTI - where she has participated in the Father English Community Center Toy Drive. She’s even the Layout Editor in Chief of the Yearbook club and was selected for New Jersey Girls State. Yet another fantastic accomplishment for which Tiamera should be recognized is receiving the bronze medal for the SkillsUSA T-Shirt design contest (junior year).

None of these fantastic accomplishments account for Tiamera’s life outside of school. Her passion for the arts truly knows no bounds. She explains, “I spend a lot of time working on my own business - Tellen Designs. The company deals mainly with shirt designs and specializes in working with charities and their events.”

When asked what has profoundly affected her growth while in high school, Tiamera references LMTI. “I learned how to be a leader. Acting as a Youth Advisory Counselor for the LMTI Leadership Camp changed who I was.” She continues to volunteer with the organization and does the same with Jersey Cares.

After high school, Tiamera will go on to pursue her love for the arts. She plans on receiving a Bachelor’s degree in Graphic Design with a minor in Photography. Her greatest aspiration is to become a Freelance Graphic Designer, own her own business, and work closely with charitable organizations.

Tiamera is a true leader whose dedication to her craft and others will ensure a successful future. Congratulations to this talented young woman!


  • Ranks in the top 3% of her class
  • President of the Class of 2017 & the Book Club
  • Selected for NHS, serves as the Corresponding Secretary
  • Editor in Chief of the Yearbook club, selected for NJ Girls State, PCTI LMTI chapter member
  • Runs own business of “Tellen Designs,” Co-op for PCTI’s Communications department
  • Goal: Graduate from a university with a Bachelor’s degree in Graphic design and a minor in Photography, become a Freelance Graphic Designer

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Qian Zhang

Qian Zhang is a dynamic young woman from Paterson who whole-heartily believes in the transformative power of education. Just how does she pursue her passion for boundless learning? Why, by taking advantage of every presented opportunity, of course! This Bulldog has big dreams and she’s determined to do everything possible to attain them.

As a member of the Academy of Finance, Qian always saw herself following a business path. Not enamored by the prospect of living life in a cubicle, Qian has decided to fine tune her future pursuits. “What I love about finance is that numbers make sense. I enjoy planning too, but I want to combine that with a social aspect.” It’s for this reason that she has decided to venture into the field of Hotel and Tourism Management.

Qian has already made connections with her dream school of NYU and has sat in on a college course. Her drive and accomplishments are unparalleled. She ranks in the top two percent of the Class of 2017 with a GPA of 4.38. By enrolling in numerous honors and AP courses, Qian has accumulated a potential eighteen credits towards her future education.

While attending PCTI, she was selected as a member of Foundation for Success, Circle of Success, Gifted & Talented, the National Honor Society, and New Jersey Girls State. As the team captain of the Consumer Bowl team, she led her peers to become county champions! Qian is also involved in Book Club and the Future Business Leaders of America. As far as volunteering efforts go, she has been a part of the March of Dimes, the Paterson Boys & Girls club staff, and has donated her time as a PCTI Saturday Tour Guide and an Open House representative. Qian even works twelve hours a week as part of PCTI’s Columbia Bank branch!

Qian’s impeccable time management skills have ensured she can tackle many goals simultaneously. She’s begun the task of instituting her own ‘Pencils of Promise’ program, an organization which aims to build schools in developing countries.

“My goal is to eventually set up schools in Laos and Kenya,” Qian adds.

She looks forward to attending NYU, but will also apply to Boston and Syracuse University. Qian explains that she looks forward to expanding her horizons by pursuing a degree in Hotel and Tourism Management, with a minor in Marketing & Revenue Management.

There’s no doubt Qian will make others feel at home when she eventually manages her own hotel. Congratulations & best of luck to this gifted young woman!


  • Ranked in the top 2% of his class
  • Selected for Freshmen Foundation for Success, Circle of Success, Gifted & Talented, NHS, & New Jersey Girls State
  • Co-op for PCTI’s branch of Columbia Bank
  • Member of Book Club & FBLA
  • Volunteers for March of Dimes, the Paterson Boys & Girls Club, as a PCTI Saturday Tour Guide, and at Open House events
  • Goal: Graduate from a university with a degree in Hotel & Tourism Management, a minor in Marketing & Revenue Management; become the manager of her own hotel

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Congratulations to Naomi Rodriguez (Girls Volleyball) and Sydney Shannon (Girls Cross Country) on being named October’s Athletes of the Month!

Naomi Rodriguez is a two-year varsity starter who:

Has had a tremendous junior season as one of the underclassmen leaders of the Girls Volleyball team. As a junior on the squad, Naomi has emerged as a solid setter for the Lady Bulldogs by earning 85 assists from the 2015 season and 107 assists in the 2016 season (which accounts for 192 total points in assists). She has 154 Points from Service and 63 Aces during her varsity run. Her presence on the court has helped the Lady Bulldogs improve their current record to 15-7 by earning a first place finish in the Hackensack Comet Invitational and a second place finish in the NJTAC Vo-Tech tournament. For the first time in school history, the Girls Varsity Volleyball team took home a share of the championship in the Big North Conference Liberty Division with a 9-1 divisional record. On Friday October 28th, the Lady Bulldogs defeated North Bergen Hill High School in round one of the NJSIAA State Tournament. Additionally, for her outstanding play on the court, Naomi was selected first team All Liberty Division in 2015 and 2016. This fall, she earned second team All-County honors.

Sydney Shannon is a two-year varsity starter who:

As a sophomore, she has provided the one-two punch to our very successful Girls Cross Country team (along with our September Athlete of the Month and her sister, Sarah Shannon). Sydney is easily one of the Lady Bulldogs’ top runners and has already asserted herself as a team leader. In Cross Country this fall, she finished in twelfth place at the Greystone invitational, fifth place at the prestigious Brett Taylor Invitational, second place in the big North Championship meet, and second place overall in the Girls NJTAC Tech Tournament Championship meet – which helped lead the Girls Cross Country team to a NJTAC Vo-Tech Championship. Sydney has also taken second place in six BNC divisional meets and has powered the Lady Bulldogs to a 4-1 divisional record with a 6-2 overall record in the competitive Big North Conference. Coach Weinpel describes Sydney as the “ultimate competitor and a driving force” for the betterment of our Lady Bulldogs in the cross country and track programs.

Congratulations to Sarah Shannon (Girls Cross Country) and Felix Melo (Boys Soccer) on being named September’s Athletes of the Month!

Sarah Shannon is a four-year varsity starter who:

As a senior, has had a tremendous season as the leader of the Girls Cross Country team. Sarah is easily the top runner of the Lady Bulldogs and has been so for quite some time. She’s earned nine varsity letters in Cross Country, Winter Track, and Spring Track. This fall in Cross Country, Sarah finished in fourth place at the prestigious Brett Taylor Invitational, second place in the Season Opener Invitational meet, and first place overall in the Girls NJTAC Tech Tournament Championship meet, leading the Girls Cross Country team to a NJTAC Vo-Tech Team Championship! Sarah has also taken first place in eight BNC divisional meets and has powered the Lady Bulldogs to a 4-1 divisional record, with a 6-2 overall record in the very competitive Big North Conference. She has been awarded the #1 seed in the Big North Championship meet which will run during the second week of October. Coach Weinpel describes Sarah Shannon as the “heart and soul” of our Lady Bulldogs track program and a clear leader of our Cross Country squad.

Felix Melo is a four-year varsity starter who:

Has had a tremendous senior season as the leader of the Boys Soccer team. As a senior Captain of the squad, Felix – from his stout defensive position — has lead the Bulldogs to an 8-2 start in the 2016 Campaign. The team, having posted key victories over the Mustangs of Clifton High School (2-1 in Overtime) and the Ironmen of Don Bosco (1-0), has earned the respect of Passaic County and has been awarded the #1 overall seed in the PCCA Boys Soccer Tournament. As the overall leader and a clear defensive standout, Felix has captained the team to post five shutouts in the month of September. In addition to his defensive prowess, he is a key component to the team’s designed set pieces and has managed to muster offense for the Bulldogs by netting two very important goals this season. Felix will be sure to continue the team’s efforts into the county and state post season.