Migrant Program Award

The Central Susquehanna Intermediate Unit's Northeast Migrant Education Program received the Sister Siena Finley Ethics Award presented Oct. 16 by the Ethics Institute of Northeastern Pennsylvania at Misericordia University.

Each year the institute presents the award to a person or organization that has demonstrated exemplary ethical behavior in its personal, civic and/or professional life.  The award, presented at the institute's award dinner, celebrated ethical leadership in meeting the educational needs of the children of migrant workers, who make critical contributions to the region's economy and community.

The Northeast Migrant Education Program serves 19 counties in northeastern Pennsylvania. Since 2003, the program in Luzerne and Lackawanna counties has provided supplemental education services to more than 2,500 students between the ages of 3 and 21.

The Ethics Institute pointed out that the 85 percent graduation rate for local migrant students is well above the national rate of 42 percent.  In addition, about 45 percent of the local graduates have completed post-secondary educational programs and are making impressive contributions in their communities.

"The migrant education program has been essential in improving the quality of education these children receive during an important time in their lives," said Dr. Charles Zola, executive director of the institute.  "The program's commitment to serving the educational needs of others powerfully exemplifies our common responsibility to work for greater social justice within our local communities. These educators communicate the ideals which the institute wishes to highlight and honor."

PHOTO CAPTION:  Taking part in the presentation of the Sister Siena Finley Ethics Award to the Migrant Education Program of Hazleton and Scranton were, from left, Dr. Charles Zola, executive director of the institute; Sandra Medina-Lopez, migrant education student support coordinator, Hazleton; Alba Espinosa, a senior at Hazleton Area High School; Barbara Hludzik-Budda, migrant education student support coordinator, Scranton; and Dr. Margarita Rose, president of the institute.