Susan Pagano, program manager of business, career, and technology training at Brookdale Community College, has been named one of the Phenomenal Women Under 40 by the Girl Scouts of the Jersey Shore.

This year Pagano, along with nine other women from Monmouth and Ocean Counties, will be honored at the Fifth Annual Phenomenal Women Under 40 even on Wednesday, September 23. The Phenom Award recognizes emerging leaders for their accomplishments to date and for the potential of what they might achieve in their future.

Pagano, a Howell resident, has already achieved much during her time at Brookdale. She began working in the college’s Continuing and Professional Studies Department in early 2019. She manages all the programs in the business, career, and training programs including project management, judicial and medical interpreting, real estate, horticulture, human resources, web development, and many others.

Sign Up for Red Bank Newsletter
Our newsletter delivers the local news that you can trust.

Under Pagano’s lead, all the business, career, and training programs were able to transition to virtual learning once Brookdale’s campuses were closed due to the pandemic. “We moved all these courses online quickly at the beginning of the pandemic using Zoom and virtual machines, for computer training,” Pagano said.

In addition to the successful transition to online learning, Pagano also achieved a 30 percent increase in revenue growth for her programs during the last fiscal year.

“I was honestly so shocked,” Pagano said about being recognized by the Girl Scouts of the Jersey Shore for her accomplishments. “I didn’t expect to be a recipient of the award.”

Prior to working at Brookdale, Pagano worked at the Center for Student Success and Writing Center at Ocean County College. She also held various positions at Monmouth University where she earned a bachelor’s degree in political science and a master’s degree in public policy.

While a graduate student, Pagano founded the Food Recovery Network at Monmouth University. “It is a national organization that works with student leaders at colleges across the country to recover left over food from dining locations on campus to donate to local food pantries and soup kitchens,” she explained. “When I first heard about the organization, I thought it was a genius idea. It made complete sense to me to do one small thing that could have such a significant impact on people.”

The Food Recovery Network at Monmouth had their first recovery and donation in April 2016, thanks to Pagano’s efforts. This effort continues to donate untouched, unserved food from campus eateries and delivers it Reformation Lutheran Church Community Food Pantry in West Long Branch and Meal at Noon in Long Branch.

As for future accomplishments, Pagano plans to continue to add new programs at Brookdale. “I hope to continue growing our programming to better meet the needs of students and support workforce development in the county,” she said. In addition, Pagano will be starting Monmouth University’s Doctorate of Educational Leadership with a concentration in Higher Education Administration this Fall.

To find out more about the Girl Scouts of the Jersey Shore Phenomenal Women Under 40 event and to purchase tickets, please visit www.jerseyshoregirlscouts.org/en/give/special-events/phenomenal_women.html

To find out more about the business, career, and technology training programs at Brookdale Community College, please visit www.brookdalecc.edu.