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The Doctor Is In: Dr. Bernardo’s First Year at PRHS

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One choice, one decision, one move can change your life forever and send you to places you would never have imagined. But, whatever may be around the corner you must be prepared for any situation and Dr. Patrick Bernardo knows what this is like. Dr. Patrick Bernardo, the current Supervisor of Educational Technology at Park Ridge High School, has quite a resume to show. From a young age, Dr. Bernardo always knew he had a passion for philosophy as that led him to obtain his PhD. He told me that he never really had a plan in mind and he did not know what he wanted to do in life, but he followed his passions and dedicated himself to what he was doing. His determination and focus led him to all sorts of places, doing things that he never thought he would be doing such as teaching a college course or becoming the Supervisor of Educational Technology at Park Ridge High School. Before coming to Park Ridge, he was a college professor at Montclair State and Loyola University, and also taught history at Ridgewood High School. He also received a doctoral degree in Philosophy along with his degrees in teaching. Dr. Bernardo has been teaching for a long time and preached to me that things do not go always as planned as his time at PRHS has taught him much about how his life has changed.

Throughout his time at Park Ridge, even though it has been so short, he has learned lots about students as well as about himself. He stated that “I think Park Ridge has been a really welcoming place.” The adjustment from such a big school to a much smaller school was a challenge for Dr. Bernardo as now he no longer just interacts with a few students. Here, he is given an opportunity to learn not only about the lives of high school students, but all students in grades K-12. His new role in PRHS allows him to learn about everyday life in PRHS and the students themselves. Dr. Bernardo stated that, “It’s fun working with students in Kindergarten to 12th grade because I can see all the different sides of the grades.” With this new experience, it has given him a new perspective on teaching about technology and its effects on all students of different ages. Even though his time here has been limited, there is so much he wants to share with the students of PRHS. Even though he does not know all the students.

When asked about what message he might provide his new students at PRHS, he returned to the lessons of his own experience as a student. He explained that “your life is not going to be the way you plan it, the most important thing he learned is that you should develop skills so you can adapt to any situation.” Dr. Bernardo has gone through this during his life. For example, he always thought the ability to hit a baseball was something with you were born with. As a student, Dr. Bernardo struggled with what he saw himself doing in the future. He didn’t have a set plan for his life but found himself drawn to technology. Even though he did not know what to expect in his life, he improved upon his skills day by day trying to gain every ounce of knowledge he could, so when he figured out what he wanted to do in life, he was ready. Dr. Bernardo never knew where he was going to end up, for all he knew he could be teaching somewhere across the country, but he was brought here to PRHS. It was not a clear plan that led him here, but rather the process of sharpening his skills. His preparation for any situation put in front of him meant he excelled at each opportunity along the way. This is a lesson we may all take away from PRHS’s new Supervisor of Instructional Technology. As we confront the challenges of school, remember to sharpen your skills, whether technological or not. That way you will be ready for the many opportunities ahead.

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The Doctor Is In: Dr. Bernardo’s First Year at PRHS