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Sun, Jan. 19

Bradshaw Mountain VIPS honored

Sheryl McCulley (left), Georgia Benyk (center) and Nick Cilano were recognized by the Humboldt Unified School District as Bradshaw Mountain High School VIPs. (Courtesy photos)

Sheryl McCulley (left), Georgia Benyk (center) and Nick Cilano were recognized by the Humboldt Unified School District as Bradshaw Mountain High School VIPs. (Courtesy photos)

All three Bradshaw Mountain High School VIPs honored by the Humboldt Unified School District Governing Board during the March 17 meeting have what Bradshaw Principal Kort Miner calls expertise, intelligence, generosity and involvement.

For Sheryl McCully, certified VIP, the award was "bittersweet" as she is following her husband at the end of this, her tenth year at Bradshaw, to Colorado where he has been transferred. McCully said she practiced nursing for 22 years before taking on the instructor position for the Certified Nursing Assistant program, and this has been by far her favorite job.

Miner said McCully has the ability to push students to their fullest potential.

"Though Sheryl entered the nursing field first, her teaching pedagogy is unparalleled and her exemplary performance in the classroom has earned her the respect and admiration of her colleagues and administrators," he said. "Sheryl's contributions are unprecedented in this area."

Her expertise has led BMHS to six years as a Platinum Award winner from United Blood Services, teaching her CNA students to conduct vision and hearing tests at district elementary schools, and sponsorship of the LINK Crew, a freshman transition program.

McCully has earned Rotary Teacher of the Year, HOSA (Health Occupations Students of America) Outstanding State Advisor and HOSA National Advisor of the Year.

Georgia Benyk, district psychologist, tackles the testing process for students with special needs - including attending all Individual Education Plan meetings - and is a member of the district's Child Study Team.

"Through IEP meetings, it is clear that Georgia is highly intelligent about special education law, student accommodations, and modifications. She runs the meetings with compassion and care but with expectations for all stakeholders," Miner wrote in his nomination letter to the board.

Benyk opened a "Drop-in Center" once a week at the high school for troubled students. She is the person who assesses students if they are posing possible harm to themselves or others. She will continue to check on students during the school year.

"Once again, her expertise and confidentiality is appreciated by all parties involved," Miner added.

VIP Volunteer Nick Cilano is behind the scenes at major events at Bradshaw running the sound equipment.

"Nick runs the microphones, video and music effortlessly with smooth transitions. He has done this for free and out of the goodness of this heart," Miner said.

At Future Freshman Night earlier this year, Miner said there were technical difficulties and Nick wasn't there to handle them.

"It was the first time we tried doing it ourselves, proving how important and how much we rely on Nick's generosity and expertise," he said.

As always, Credit Union West Branch Manager Kiona Bell gave $50 gift cards to the deserving VIPs and Volunteer of the Month.

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