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RSVP for Cape May County’s ‘Women of Wonder’ Event Oct. 29

October 15, 2013

There’s still time join Cape May County’s “Women of Wonder LeagueSM,” for their third annual meeting and to honor the 2013 Woman of Wonder award recipient, 4-7 p.m., Tuesday, Oct. 29, at a “super-secret” location in Stone Harbor.

The “WOW” event, spearheaded by Dr. Patricia Gentile, Atlantic Cape Community College’s dean of advancement, enrollment management & Cape May County Campus, and Maria Kellett, director of resource development, will focus attention on the ongoing education needs of at-risk students in Cape Educational COMPACT, the county’s alternative high school. The college and COMPACT have a long and successful relationship that has significantly reduced dropouts, bolstered high school graduation and has encouraged graduates to pursue higher education.

The pre-Halloween meet and greet is part of Atlantic Cape’s “Create Opportunity” Capital & Scholarship Campaign. Guests are encouraged to wear their favorite superhero costumes.

Dr. Gentile hopes other members of the WOW League will join her in contributing to a scholarship fund to support COMPACT students in attending classes at Atlantic Cape to further expand their educational horizons. COMPACT is also looking for volunteers for mentoring and educational experiences in support of their students.

“COMPACT students have not made it in the traditional high school setting, but there are many reasons—some have medical issues, some are victims of violence, some are in foster homes, some are homeless,” Dr. Gentile said. “I’ve been so inspired by students I’ve met, their stories of courage and the daunting challenges they face. I’d like to ensure they can find the superhero inside to realize their dreams of a college education,” she said.

The evening’s program will feature COMPACT students and a talk by the program’s graduates. Dr. Gentile and COMPACT Principal Tracey Staab also will bestow the 2013 Woman of Wonder Award upon Noel Hiers of Egg Harbor Township, creator and director of the School Based Youth Services program at the Cape May County Technical High School. Since the program’s inception in 2006, Hiers has established counseling clubs, field trips, support groups and a cafeteria alternative to meet the needs of her students. 

“If a student has a financial, emotional or physical need that can’t be met, Noel finds the resources,” nominator Julia Martin of Cape May County Technical High School, said.

The Woman of Wonder Award is a prestigious acknowledgement of a superhero that goes above and beyond her work or volunteer responsibilities on an ongoing basis. The Woman of Wonder exemplifies a superhero in action.

Potential Cape May County “Women of Wonder” interested in attending to learn more about Atlantic Cape Community College programs with Cape Educational COMPACT should RSVP at Refreshments will be served and costumes are optional.

“Create Opportunity: The Capital & Scholarship Campaign for Atlantic Cape Community College,” is the college’s first major gifts campaign. The campaign has two initiatives: increase college-based financial assistance by enhancing the scholarship endowment and secure funding to purchase furnishings and scientific equipment for the new Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics facility to be built on the Mays Landing Campus. To learn more about Atlantic Cape’s Capital & Scholarship Campaign and other investment opportunities, contact Maria Kellett, director of resource development, at (609) 463-3670 or, or visit