BLOOMFIELD, NJ--Smiles and some tears accompanied a different kind of ceremony at Bloomfield High's Senior Awards Night.
With school closed for the remainder of the academic year and social distancing still the norn in New Jersey, Bloomfield HIgh principal Christopher Jennings hosted a virtual ceremony, honoring Bloomfield's top students and athletes.
Jennings started the nearly two hour ceremony with a series of thanks, to the Board of Education members, as well as secretaries and other administrators who helped put togehter the evening. Jennings emceed the night, and made some presentations while others teachers, administrators and scholarship coordinators also helped with presentations.
The ceremony was very well done, and the sense of history which surrounded the night spoke volumes, as many BHS alumni and families returned to honor the class of 2020.
"This is one of my favorite events," Jennings said before the start of the ceremony. "Tonight honors our students, academically, athletically and socially, some in multiple areas. We honor and thank them.
"And we recognize the families, who are watching this from home. Without their support, the students wouldn't have been this successful. This is also about our community, which continues to honor the students. Our alumni is tremendous. All the presenters have a special place in their heart for our kids. Without their generosity, this would not be possible."
Jennings also noted that many of the awards are in the name of a loved one, some of whom have passed away.
"You should cherish the award long after the (scholarship) funds are spent," said Jennings.
Of course, this year's ceremony wasn't like the traditional dinner in a banquet hall. A lot of work would go into making the event special, including multiple speakers, at their respective homes, presenting awards. It was well-orchestrated and clearly done with heart.
All of the families would be e-mailed a program, to follow along. A special version of the BHS alma mater was played before hand.
Once the night began, nearly 100 awards were handed out. The presenters spoke with pride. A few cried, remembering loved ones whose names adorned a scholarship. Many more recalled good times as a Bengal, and how they wished this year's class had gotten the opportunity to finish out the academic and athletic year the way all the others normally concluded.
Among those receiving awards was Bloomfield's valedictorian for 2020, Camille Aquino, who will attend Rutgers University, this fall. The BHS salutatorian, Michael Bsales, will attend Notre Dame. Anna Haraka, who received multiple awards, is headed to Cornell University. Adam Velin received an appointment to the United States Naval Academy.
When the last of the awards was presented, Jennings would remind the students that their respective awards would arrive in the mail soon.
Here's a list of the the awards presented and the name of the respective students who garnered accolades.
Class of 1969 Cross Country/Track and Field, presented by Jeff Hartke, went to Rendell Amilcar.
Fireman's Mutual Benevolent Association Scholarship presented by Anthony Minervino, to Taylor Laiacona, Vincent Torrisi, Daniel Urey and Diamond Urey.
The ninth annual BHS Class of 1958, Joseph Crecca Scholarships, to Michael Bsales, Joshua Costomiris, Anna Haraka and Jamianne Kelly.
Crecca, a 1958 BHS grad, would attend the Newark College of Engineering (now NJIT), then went on to serve his country, as a fighter pilot, in the United States Air Force. In 1966, while flying what was supposed to be his final mission, Crecca's plane was shot down over Vietnam and was held as a Prisoner of War for six years. He subsequently returned home and was a commercial airline pilot for many years.
Anthony Pascal Family Scholarship was presented by Terrance Mullane, to Michael Bsales.
Montclair Society of Engineers Award, Class of '55. to Daniel Keseling.
Bloomfield Veterans of Foreign Wars Prize.was presented to Ryan Polak and Adam Velin, for excellent grades in history.
Dr. Eugene M. Pfeiffer Scholarship, for science-based students, was presented by Emad Abdelnaby to Camille Aquino.
Bloomfield Youth Aid Foundation, Strive For Excellence Scholarship, was presented to Katherine Bretz, Alexandria Corio and Joshua Costomiris.
Alyssa Martino Memorial Scholarship to Katherine Bretz and Lexi Corio.
2020 Bloomfield Fraternal Order of Police, Lodge 214 Scholarship, to a Criminal Justice major or minor, went to Sienna Tyransky.
Bloomfield Cruisers Scholarship, presented by Michael Scuerman, is for car and motorcycle enthusiasts, and went to Willy Ventura.
Bloomfield Educational Foundation, Theodore Jasieniecki Memorial Scholarship, for Bengal basketball players, went to Gina Perrotta and Brandon Estelle. The Jasieniecki Scholarship is one of the longest running scholarships at Bloomfield, and is in its 31st year.
Bloomfield Educational Foundation, Robert Fetterly Alumni Scholarship, went to Delyse Howard.
Bloomfield Educational Foundation, First Annual Fred Celluro Memorial Scholarship, was presented to Lexi Corio,
Bloomfield Educational Foundation, Joseph Poniatowski Beneficial Association Scholarship, to Michael Gillespie.
Bloomfield Educational Foundation, Matthew Melucci Scholarship, to Camille Aquino.
Bloomfield Educational Foundation, BHS Class of 1965 Scholarship, to Megan Carter and Luca Ponticello.
Bloomfield Educational Foundation, Jackie Courter Fine Arts Scholarship, to Grace Carlin.
Bloomfield Educational Foundation, Mark and Charlotte Greenstein Student Athlete Scholarships, to Dominic Dominguez and Rosa Marfia.
Bloomfield Educational Foundation, Sgt. Joe Paris Memorial Scholarship, to Lexi Corio.
Bloomfield Educational Foundation, Dorothy Jewkes Straight and Leroy Straight Memorial Scholarships, to Manas Ranpariya and Sofia Rubino. Both will be going to Rutgers University, New Brunswick.
Bloomfield Educational Foundation, Dorothy Jewkes Straight and Leroy Straight Memorial Scholarships to Rendell Amilcar and Mia Lopez, both of whom will attend Rutgers University, in Newark.
Bloomfield Educational Foundation, James White True Competitor Student Athlete Scholarship, went to Michael Bsales. Former BHS athletic director Bob Storm made the presentation.
Bloomfield Educational Foundation, William Foley Scholarship, presented by Bob Storm, to Joshua Castro.
Bloomfield Educational Foundation, Sidney M. Itkin Award, to Jeffrey Diaz.
Bloomfield Educational Foundation, Sheldon Seevak/Anne Itkin Ethics Award, to Anna Haraka.
Bruce S. Arlett Sr. Scholarship, to Anna Haraka.
Darren Clark Jr. Memorial Scholarship, Zaryjah Jones presenter, to Grace Carlin
BHS Softball Booster Club, Gerise Carter Memorial Scholarship, presented by Joe Corio,to Megan Carter, daughter of Gerise Carter.
Carteret Home and School Association, presented by Deanna Pronel, to Maria Sanchez.
Major Joseph Bloomfield Chapter, DAR Good Citizen Award, to Emily Sawaked.
Margaret Sherlok Memorial Chemistry Scholarship, to Camille Aquino and Priyal Gajera.
Bloomfield Education Association, to Megan Carter, Amanda Giunta, Mia McLaughlin, Albert Terc and Alexia Valentin.
Demarest Home and School Association, Academic Scholarships, to Amanda Giunta, Rosa Marfia and Jamianne Kelly.
Franklin Home & School Association Scholarship, to Alexia Valentin.
The John Garcia Memorial Scholarship, presented by James McDaniel, to Joshua Costomiris and Anna Haraka.
Mark Groendyk Memorial Scholarship, to Camille Aquino, Mikaela Benkert, Jamianne Kelly and Manas Ranpariya.
Bloomfield High School Home and School Association Scholarships, to Camille Aquino, Michael Bsales, Anna Haraka, Elizabeth Nucci, Mikaela Benkert, Jacqueline Drucker, Hannah Nagy and Caroline Vigna.
Bloomfield Historical Society Awards to Mikaela Benkert and Nicole Mautone.
Brookdale Home and School Association Inc. Scholarship to Anna Haraka.
Richard G. Huhn Music Scholarship, presented by Amy Van Sant-Huhn, to Grace Carlin.
John P. Keating Memorial Scholarships, celebrating 31 years, to Marco Colasurdo and CaraMia Norelli.
Christina Lembo Memorial Soccer Scholarships, to Malena Colon and Emily Lloyd.
Edward A. McCarrol Jr. Memorial Scholarships, to Anthony Rizzi and Noah Kelly.
Anatalia Pena Scholarship, (Anatalia had won the Christina Lembo Scholarship in 2017 but was killed in an accident in August, 2019) to Gina Perrotta.
The League of Women Voters of the Montclair Area Education Fund Award, to Sienna Tyransky.
The Montclair Drifters Inc. Scholarship, to Jamianne Kelly and Nicole Mautone.
Music Parents Association of Bloomfield High School Scholarships, to Malena Colon and Delyse Howard.
The Jessica Pastore Memorial Scholarship, to Jamianne Kelly.
Bloomfield Presbyterian Church on the Green Scholarships, presented to Mikaela Benkert and Hailey Rue.
Daniel J. Sierchio Scholarship, to Megan Carter.
BHS Theatre Parents Association Scholarship, to Shannon Bretz, Benjamin Douglas, Elizabeth Nucci, Grace Carlin, Nicole Mautone and Jack Reeder.
Bloomfield Chapter of Unico Awards, Italian Prize and Peter Manetto Music Award, to Aidan Carroll, Joshua Costomiris and Nicole Mautone.
Watsessing Home and School Association Scholarship, to Diamond Urey.
Mary E. Boylan Egan Scholarship, to Keziah Anderson
Watsessing AC Scholarship, to Megan Carter and Arianna Costantino.
The Perry Goldstein Silent Hero Award, to Megan Carter.
Angela Musetto Imhoff Community Service Awards to Camille Aquino, Faith Guerron and Tiffany Rodriguez.
Lou Imhoff Memorial Scholarships, to Peter Kuo and Anthony Rizzi.
Bloomfield Kiwanis Key Club Awards, to Juliana Cianciotta and Sienna Tyransky.
Bloomfield HS Key Club Awards, to Joke-Sindy Casimir, Andrew Geraci, Daniel Keseling, Emily Lloyd and Maja Williams.
Dr. Gene F. Napoliello Distinguished Service Award to Madison Kennedy.
Tom Parker Scholarship to Alexander Scuerman.
Bloomfield HS Orchestra Outstanding Member Award, to Taylor Gilliam-Jones.
Bloomfield HS Orpheus Award, to Nicole Mautone and Tallulah Pentecost.
Ralph C. Diller Outstanding Choir Member Award, to Grace Carlin.
United States Marine Band Award, Semper Fidelis Award for Music, to Daniela Chung.
United States Marine Corps' Distinguished Athlete Award, to D'Isaiah Larrea.
United States Marine Corps' Scholastic Excellence Award, to Camille Aquino.
The Bloomfield High School Art Award, to Amanda DeJonge and Madison Kennedy.
Woman's Club of Bloomfield Past Presidents Scholarship, to Elizabeth Nucci.
Woman's Club of Bloomfield Citizenship Scholarship, to Nicole Mautone.
Woman's Club of Bloomfield, Education Scholarship,to Melanee Marcano.
Bloomfield HIgh School Class of 1975 Scholarships, to Mikaela Benkert, Megan Carter, Amanda Giunta, Anna Haraka and Elizabeth Nucci.
Jack Scally Fairview Home and School Association Scholarship, to Arianna Costantino.
The Salvatore J. Desimone Fairview School Pride Award, to Nina Cutchall.
The Gay Gerber Memorial Scholarship, to Nina Cutchall.
Oak View Home and School Association Scholarships, to Malena Colon and Nicole Mautone.
The Business Technology Senior Scholarship Awards, to Felicia Cochran and Isidro Gomez McPherson.
Bloomfield High School National Honor Society Award, to Chloe Tremmell.
Coccia Foundation Italian Studies Student Award, to Nicole Trucios.
The Harold Brotherhood Award, to Anna Haraka and Emily Sawaked.
College Benefit Fund Scholarships, to Camille Aquino, Megan Carter, Keya Baker and Mary Nucci.
The Eyecare Center of NJ Scholarship, to Megan Carter.
The Dr. Leslie Willis Scholarship, to Caroline Vigna.
Suburban Chamber of Commerce Foundation, to Mikaela Benkert and Daniel Keseling.
Gary P. Formica Memorial Scholarship, to Adam Velin.
The Bill Schwindt Memorial Scholarships, to Amanda Giunta and Adam Velin.
The Joseph Magliacano Memorial Scholarship, presented by Mike Carter, to Nicholas Pentz.
Berkeley Home and School Scholarship, to Francesca Darius and Eliana Elysee.
Susan Hertzberg-Bohrer-Jason Pelusio Scholarship, to Nicholas Pentz.
Bloomfield Wrestling Booster Club and Gencarelli's Bakery Scholarship Award, to Jarred Garcia.
Michelle Devito-Guerrero Education Scholarship, to Vincent Torrisi.
Bloomfield High School Administrators and Supervisors Award, to Michael Bsales, Megan Carter, Daniela Chung, Amanda Giunta, Jamianne Kelly, D'Isaiah Larrea, Rosa Marfia and Nicole Mautone.
Captain's Club Award, to Anna Haraka.
A link to the entire ceremony can be found here https://drive.google.com/file/d/19y1Yb1ythpWCw_b3nKrGCgO9VZ6Zju_-/view