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East Elementary teacher assistant Addy-O'Rourke takes top title

Eileen Addy-O’Rourke, a 17-year veteran teacher assistant at East Elementary, is the 2015 Teacher Assistant of the Year. (Middle photo) Nicole Jansen, a senior at Sun Valley High School, at left, and Justin Montgomery, a senior at Central Academy of Technology and Arts, received scholarships from the Union County Chapter of the North Carolina Association of Teacher Assistants (UCNCATA). (Bottom photo) UCPS school-level winners of the teacher assistant of the year title pose for a photo at the 23rd annual Teacher Assistant of the Year banquet.

Eileen Addy-O’Rourke, a 17-year veteran teacher assistant at East Elementary, has been chosen as the 2015 Teacher Assistant of the Year by the Union County Chapter of the North Carolina Association of Teacher Assistants (UCNCATA).

More than 250 people came out to celebrate the crowning of this year’s teacher assistant of the year, an announcement that was made during a banquet held Thursday (May 21) at South Piedmont Community College.

Addy-O’Rourke was filled with emotion as she took the podium. “I love my school. I love my kids. I work hard every day. I know everyone in this room gives of themselves 100 percent every day. It’s not a profession where you’re going to get rich and famous, but when I see the light go off in their eyes, I know I’ve accomplished what I set out to accomplish. When they come and hug me, I know I’m special to them.”

Addy-O’Rourke said she was “overwhelmed and honored” to represent her school and all the hard-working and dedicated teacher assistants in Union County.

“I’m grateful to be a part of this organization and in a profession with all of you,” she said to the room full of educators. “We all deserve this. We rock.”

UCPS Superintendent Dr. Mary Ellis thanked all of the teacher assistants for their service. “A lot of our jobs are thankless jobs. As a child of the Union County School system, as a mother of children in the Union County School system, I thank you from the bottom of my heart.”

This year marks the 23rd anniversary for the Teacher Assistant of the Year banquet. Addy- O’Rourke will now compete for the District 6 Teacher Assistant of the Year title.

During the banquet, scholarships were presented to two UCPS students, both children of UCPS teacher assistants.

Nicole Jansen, a senior at Sun Valley High School, was awarded a $500 scholarship. Nicole, the daughter of Brain and Sharon Jansen, will attend Appalachian State University pursuing a degree in graphic design and marketing.

Justin Montgomery, a senior at Central Academy of Technology and Arts, received a $1,000 scholarship. Justin, the son of James and Susan Montgomery, will attend Pfeiffer University pursuing a degree in criminal justice.

UCNCATA also presented Turning Point, the Union County battered women’s shelter, a check for $300.

A complete list of 2014-15 Teacher Assistants of the Year (school-level winners) are listed below:

 

Antioch                       Nikki Hargett

Benton Heights        Sharron Mullis

East                            Eileen O’Rourke

Indian Trail                Chrissy Gulickson

Kensington               Cindy Pierson

Marshville                  Leah Rummage

Marvin                        Kyla Horan

New Town                 Leslie Horan

Poplin                        Kari Peck

Porter Ridge             Lisa Smith

Prospect                    Devin Wallace

Rea View                   All Assistants

Rock Rest                 Carrie Pratt

Rocky River               Paula Broms

Sandy Ridge             Megan Miles

Shiloh                      Diane Hasty

Sun Valley                 Penny Yelverton

Union                         Angela Boyd

Unionville                  Susan Long

Walter Bickett           Linda Bowling

Waxhaw                     Cathy Morrow

WBEC                        Caroline Price

Weddington              Cindy Moscuzza

Wesley Chapel        Delane Winchester

Western Union         Fonda Hardison

Wingate                     Kimberly Abeyta

Written by: Deb Coates Bledsoe - UCPS Communications Coordinator
Posted: May 22, 2015 by Deb Coates Bledsoe

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