Luke Matarazzo Mandy GalanteRed Bank Regional technology teacher Mandy Galante is pictured with her former student Luke Matarazzo, now an Outstanding Undergraduate Scholar at Rochester Institute of Technology. Luke nominated her for special recognition during his last semester at college as the “best” teacher and role model that influenced his future.

Press release from Red Bank Regional High School

In the 14 years since she left corporate America to become a technology teacher at  Red Bank Regional High School, Mandy Galante has been named Monmouth County Teacher of the Year, and New Jersey’s Teacher of the Year by the Air Force Association. Her CyberPatriot teams have won state, regional and national titles every year since 2011. Lieutenant Governor Kim Gaudagno has twice visited RBR to commend her students, while WABC-TV’s Eyewitness News and NJ Channel 1 have each aired reports on the curricula she designed.

That said, Mrs. Galante holds no accolade in higher esteem than the recognition and appreciation she receives from her students — such as a 2012 honor she received from Yale University, when a former student nominated her for Yale’s Educator Award.

This past semester, Galante found herself the recipient of a certificate of recognition from Rochester Institute of Technology (RIT) — an honor that came about when she was nominated by another RBR graduate, Luke Matarazzo.

A resident of Neptune City, Luke was a student in RBR’s Cyber Security program, and successfully competed with Galante’s teams in national competitions; placing among the top students in the state of New Jersey and the nation. This past academic year, he was recognized by RIT as an Outstanding Undergraduate Scholar.

As RIT Provost and Senior Vice President for Academic Affairs Jeremy Haefner wrote in a letter to RBR’s Principal Risa Clay, “We asked our Outstanding Undergraduate Scholars each to identify a high school or community college teacher they considered the ‘best’ — a teacher they would honor as a role model and who had a profound influence on them as they planned for their future.”

“I am so proud of Luke, he is a true representative of our students who have gone on to thrive in college and make the most of their gift for technology,” said Galante upon learning of her nomination.  “As a teacher it is a gift to work with students who are excited to learn, compete and then explore opportunities in this vital field of cyber security. It has been my good fortune to teach such wonderful young people.”