Press Room

Bridget Clark

Verizon Awards $5000 Grant to St. Thomas Aquinas College for
15th Annual Rockland Literacy Extravaganza

(SPARKILL, NY – August 16, 2010) – Verizon recently awarded St. Thomas Aquinas College a $5,000 grant in support of the annual Rockland Literacy Extravaganza for teachers, reading specialists, literacy coaches, administrators, and preservice teachers studying at college.  Verizon believes in supporting the communities in which they live, work and do business, and focuses their corporate social responsibility toward education and programs that have a proven track record of success. 

“Literacy is the bridge to understanding cultures, habits and ideas that students can benefit from and apply in life’s journey,” said John Butler, Verizon’s Director of Government & External Affairs.

This year’s 15th annual Literacy Extravaganza conference is scheduled for Saturday, October 16, from 8:20 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. in St. Thomas’ Romano Student Center. The event is a professional development conference that focuses on teaching reading and writing, grades Pre K-12.  It is open to the public. 

This year’s theme is “Transformational Teaching of Reading and Writing for 21st Century Literacy Success” that focuses on using the technology to support learning.  Conference participants can select two workshops from over 20 offered.  All workshops will include a focus on using technology to support motivation, engagement, and learning.  

The Extravaganza will include two workshops that focus on using the Verizon-sponsored website to support literacy across the curriculum.  This website provides links to best practices in literacy education across the curriculum.   

This year’s conference will feature two keynote speakers, Pam Allyn, Executive Director of LitLife and LitWorld and Patricia Vitale-Reilly, President of Litlife, Westchester.  Both keynoters are nationally recognized for their excellence.

In addition to Verizon, this event is co-sponsored by St. Thomas Aquinas College, Rockland Teachers’ Center Institute, Rockland Reading Council, Palisades Association for the Education of Young Children, Rockland 21st Century Collaborative for Children and Youth, William Paterson University, Teacher Institute of Mamaroneck, Mid-Hudson Teacher Center, East Ramapo Teachers’ Center, and Nyack Teachers’ Center. 

For more information about the 15th Annual Literacy Extravaganza, contact Dr. Michael Shaw at 845-398-4079 or  For more information about corporate giving, contact the Institutional Advancement Office at 845-398-4020.

St. Thomas Aquinas College is an independent liberal arts college located in Sparkill, NY which provides education at the undergraduate and graduate levels.  The College’s 2,700 full and part time students can choose from almost 100 different majors, minors, specializations, and dual degree programs across five divisions: Humanities; Business Administration; Social Sciences; Natural Sciences & Mathematics; and Teacher Education programs. For more information visit



St. Thomas Aquinas College
125 Route 340
Sparkill, NY 10976



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