Berkeley College Alumnus of the Year, a First-Generation College Student, Helps New York Students Find a Pathway to Higher Education

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Sunday, May 1, 2022
Contact: Kelly Depsee
Director, Communications and External Relations
973-200-1099
KME@BerkeleyCollege.edu
BERKELEY COLLEGE ALUMNUS OF THE YEAR, A FIRST-GENERATION COLLEGE GRADUATE,
HELPS NEW YORK STUDENTS FIND A PATHWAY TO HIGHER EDUCATION

 Berkeley Santiago

Photo Caption: Jonathan Santiago, Berkeley College alumnus, Class of 2005, and Diane Recinos, EdD, President of Berkeley College, during the Berkeley College Commencement ceremony on Friday, May 13, 2022, at Prudential Center in Newark, NJ. Santiago, a resident of Gillette, NJ, was named the College’s 2022 Alumnus of the Year.

Berkeley College alumnus Jonathan Santiago joined the New York City Department of Education (NYCDOE) in 2011 and rose through the ranks to the position of Executive Director of Transition and College Access Centers (TCAC), where he manages community resources that can broaden college and postsecondary opportunities for students across the five boroughs. 

He credits Berkeley College with giving him a successful start to his career. 

“Berkeley College prepared me with a five-star education, which laid the foundation in helping me become an organized and efficient leader,” said Santiago, who graduated in 2005. 

Santiago was named Berkeley College’s 2022 Alumnus of the Year, and was recognized for his contributions during the College’s Commencement ceremony on Friday, May 13, 2022, at Prudential Center in Newark, NJ.

As the first in his family to attend college, Santiago knows the importance of higher education and how a degree can change someone’s life.   

“I see myself being successful in the future by guiding and coaching high school students that come from a similar social and economic background as I did and helping them to be aware of excellent postsecondary institutions,” he said. 

In addition to a Bachelor of Science in Business Administration – Management from Berkeley College, Santiago holds graduate degrees from Fairleigh Dickinson University and Seton Hall University, and is currently enrolled in a doctoral program at Syracuse University. 

Santiago has always been passionate about helping students find success through educational opportunities. He began his career as a teacher and administrator in the Newark, NJ, Public School System. After joining the NYCDOE, he was awarded the 30 under 30 Award for Educational Executive Leadership by the Office of the Mayor of the City of New York, under the Bloomberg administration in 2013.

Santiago was also named a “Hometown Hero” by the New York Daily News in February 2022 for leading an effort during the COVID-19 pandemic to hand-deliver checks to thousands of students with disabilities who hold jobs through the Transition and College Access Centers.

He was the youngest individual to be named an Executive Board Member of the New York State Association of Incarcerated Educational Programs (NYSAIEP). Through the NYSAIEP, Santiago mentors incarcerated youth, helping them establish pathways to success through education or employment after they serve their sentence. 

“If you want to be a successful person both in your personal and professional life, you must work hard,” said Santiago said, a resident of Gillette, NJ. “You will always reap the benefits of hard work.”

Read More: Click here to read more about Berkeley College graduates on the Alumni Spotlight page.

Berkeley Jonathan Santiago 

Photo Caption: Jonathan Santiago has always been passionate about helping students find success through educational opportunities. The 2005 Berkeley College alumnus joined the New York City Department of Education in 2011 and rose through the ranks to the position of Executive Director of Transition and College Access Centers. Above, Santiago started his career as a teacher and administrator in the Newark, NJ, Public School System.

About Berkeley College

Berkeley College, founded in 1931, is a career-focused institution accredited by the Middle States Commission on Higher Education that offers students Master’s, Bachelor’s, and Associate’s degree and Certificate programs in more than 20 career fields. The College also offers continuing education programs to enhance career credentials.

Berkeley College has campuses in Midtown Manhattan, NY, and in Newark, Paramus, Woodbridge and Woodland Park, NJ, with more than 4,000 students enrolled. In addition, Berkeley College Online® serves a global population. U.S. News & World Report has named Berkeley College among the Best Colleges for Online Bachelor’s Programs and among the Best Online Bachelor’s Programs for Veterans, for nine consecutive years. U.S. News & World Report named Berkeley College (NJ) one of the Best Regional Colleges in the North in its 2022 edition of the Best Colleges Survey.  In 2021 Berkeley College (NJ) was also recognized for the first time as a Top Performer on Social Mobility among colleges in the region. The website address is http://www.BerkeleyCollege.edu.

 

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