LifeChanger of the Year Nominee Profile

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Ryan Ciavaglia

Position: Counselor
School: Waterford Township School District
School District: Waterford Township School District
City, State: Waterford , NJ

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Music that Describes Ryan

Ryan Ciavaglia was nominated by an anonymous colleague.

"I have known Ryan for several years, since he was hired in our district. It has been a privilege and an honor to work with him since day one," said his nominator. "I have been in awe of his dedication and talent. He has helped so many of our students each day. He is there to support students during difficult times and in times of crisis. Ryan is also there to support and recognize their successes and progress."

As a counselor, Mr. Ciavaglia has helped initiate a school wide positive behavioral support program, a student safety program, and a peer mentor program. He also greets staff and students each day with daily morning announcements, where he recognizes students and staff. He ends each morning with a reminder to show kindness, compassion, and respect to others.

"One of the things that impressed me most about Ryan, aside from his dedication, is his caring and compassionate nature," said his nominator. "Over the years, he has taken the time to get to know all of the students by name. He has also made it his job to learn about their lives and interests. It's amazing to see nearly every student greet him and he, in return, greet them by name."

Mr. Ciavaglia also does many other things for his district. Aside from being the anti-bullying specialist for his school, he is very involved in several committees and helps organize school events such as the annual student talent show. Recently, he spearheaded an effort to assist a staff member going through medical and financial familial issues by entering her in a contest to win a car. Through all his efforts and contacts, the contest came down to this individual and one other person.

"Over the years, Ryan has gone out of his way to help many students, staff, parents, and families. I cannot say enough about his talent, hard work, dedication, and impact as a counselor in our district," said his nominator. "He is truly an asset to the students and staff and, for those of us fortunate to work with him, a positive force who brings smiles and joy to those around him. One last thought worth mentioning is that one day, a former student and his mother were in contact to tell him that he is the reason that former student has decided to go to school to become a counselor. Mr. C, as the kids call him, has a positive impact on so many people!"

Comments (2)

Patrick Davidson Posted over a year ago

Mr. C is someone who is genuine in his approach to helping children. Ryan approaches his job in a selfless manner, and he always steps up to lend a hand, or take part in a project. I can think of quite a number of instances where he has placed his own needs aside to assist a student, a colleague, or families in need. Mr. C has worked closely with many students, including individually and group, and each time, he has cultivated relationships that are often life changing. In addition, Mr. C checks up on, and in some cases, meets up with former students over a slice of pizza. This is just one example of his dedication. Whenever there is a new committee or project, it's a given that Ryan will be there to assist. He has been instrumental in providing students opportunities outside of the normal curriculum. Our building has student mentee and mentors, student safety patrol officers, and different events throughout the year that are supported or led by Mr. C.. Mr. C also works with student council, serves on the culture and climate committee, and serves as the Anti-Bullying Specialist for the school. His responsibilities are numerous and his generosity is limitless. Most educators change lives. It's the nature of our profession! I do believe that Mr. C is symbolic of the greatness that is possible in education! He is a fine example of the power of relationships and the connection they have to student success. I am proud to support and affirm this nomination, that indeed, Ryan Ciavaglia is deserving of the Lifechanger Award! Sincerely, Patrick Davidson Principal, Waterford Elementary School

Kelly Herman Posted over a year ago

Ryan deserves to be recognized for all of his wonderful contributions to our school and community!