PARAMUS, N.J. — Bergen Community College honors graduate Amirah Elayan, a member of the Class of 2020, has earned the Northeast Regional Honors Council “Student of the Year Award” for her scholastic excellence and impact on Bergen’s Judith K. Winn School of Honors program.

The Northeast Regional Honors Council recognizes a student from a four-year and a two-year institution with its annual Student of the Year Award. The organization encompasses 200 colleges in Maine, New Hampshire, Vermont, Massachusetts, Rhode Island, Connecticut, New York, New Jersey, Pennsylvania, Maryland, Delaware, the District of Columbia, Puerto Rico, Quebec, Ontario and the Maritime Provinces of Nova Scotia, New Brunswick and Prince Edward Island.

“I am more than honored to be accepting this award,” said Elayan. “I have worked hard to make the honors society a distinguished group of students known for helping not only other honors students, but all the students around us. This has been a pleasure, and I am so glad to have made an impact.”

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A 4.0 GPA holder, Elayan, of Westwood, is passionate about environmental causes, community outreach, and assisting underrepresented students. Among her projects, Elayan obtained used books from local libraries and resold them to generate funds for students to attend mental health and wellness seminars. She also worked as a lead assistant at the First in the World grant program, tutored peers, and served as vice president of the Judith K. Winn School of Honors program at the College.

“I cannot speak with any surety on how many other students were nominated for the Student of the Year Award, but I'm absolutely sure none could have come close to Amirah for passion, enthusiasm, responsibility and creativity,” Seamus Gibbons, Bergen’s director of the Judith K. Winn School of Honors and associate professor of composition and literature, said. “Amirah will leave a lasting legacy for future honors students to try to emulate. She is the quintessential all-round excellent student and a wonderful human being to boot.”

Elayan, a comparative literature major who graduated with her associate’s degree during the College's first-ever virtual commencement ceremony in May, will attend Manhattan College in the Bronx this fall.

She aspires to become an author and literature professor.