Casimir Rappa of Bellmore, a former Instructor for the Nassau BOCES Adult Education Evening program, is being lauded as one of the most devoted supporters of public education on Long Island. Mr. Rappa is among 13 honorees to receive the 2016 Nassau BOCES Education Partner Award, bestowed annually on those individuals and organizations whose impact on public education in Nassau County can be measured in tangible ways.
Casimir Rappa of Bellmore, a former Instructor for the Nassau BOCES Adult Education Evening program, is presented with the Nassau BOCES Education Partner award by (left to right) Nassau BOCES Board Members Martin Kaye and Fran Langsner
The Education Partner Award recognizes those individuals who have made a substantial impact on public education in Nassau County. A strategic education partner with local school districts since 1967, Nassau BOCES created this program to pay tribute to those who share its commitment to enabling students of all ages and abilities to achieve their maximum potential.
Rappa retired from the Nassau BOCES Adult Education Evening Program after teaching for nearly 34 years. During his tenure, he taught several different courses covering a wide range of technical and trade-related career fields.
Rappa developed his skills in the electronics trade at the Brooklyn Navy Yard, while helping build the aircraft carrier USS Saratoga under the apprenticeship of experts in the fields of electricity, carpentry and plumbing. After the Saratoga was launched, he moved on to work as a Telephone Installer, troubleshooting the various aspects of wiring homes, businesses and apartment buildings. He built on these experiences to start his own alarm installation business and eventually became a Telecommunications Consultant for the Bristol Meyers Company.
In 1981, Mr. Rappa approached the director of the Nassau BOCES Adult Education program, inquiring if they offered a course on how to install burglar alarms. The director informed him that they did not and suggested that Mr. Rappa create a course and teach it himself. Mr. Rappa took the director up on his offer and, for the next several years, taught a class on alarm system installation.
With experience, Mr. Rappa realized the need for his students to learn more about the fundamentals of electricity. This led to his proposing and delivering a course on Basic Electricity. Over the next few years he expanded the school’s offerings with courses in Electronics and Trade Electric Theory. His classes were rich in practical and hands-on training, as well as in the science and theory behind the concepts, giving students a strong foundation on which to build their careers.
“I always wanted to teach,” Casimir said. “In high school, I looked at my teachers and said ‘that’s what I would really like to do one day.’ It really was a joy to teach courses in the things I liked to do.”
“Casimir Rappa has always been a dedicated educator, staying late into the night and refining his coursework for the next class,” said Nassau BOCES Board Member Robert “B.A.” Schoen. “As a result, many of his students have come back throughout the years to thank him for his dedication, several of whom have built successful careers in the trades. We thank Mr. Rappa for his outstanding dedication.”
The annual awards gala is held by the Nassau BOCES Educational Foundation as a way of celebrating individuals who have made significant strides in supporting and improving education on Long Island. The Foundation is an independent non-profit organization that raises funds for innovative educational programs that fall outside of the agency’s budget.
For additional information about the Nassau BOCES Education Partner awards, including profiles of prior year honorees, please visit www.nassauboces.org/educationpartner.
About Nassau BOCES
A vital regional resource, Nassau BOCES offers state-of-the-art programs for learners of all ages and abilities as well as cost-effective services for school districts and municipalities. We empower students to achieve their maximum potential in alternative, artistic, outdoor, special education, virtual, and career and technical environments. We offer adult education and STEM (science, technology, engineering and math) programs that are vital to improving the Long Island regional economy. In addition, our technology services form the backbone of many school districts’ infrastructure. As the county’s educational leader in implementing the state’s reform efforts, we are helping to shape the future of education. To learn more, visit www.nassauboces.org and like us at www.facebook.com/nassauboces.
Photo Caption: Casimir Rappa of Bellmore, a former Instructor for the Nassau BOCES Adult Education Evening program, is presented with the Nassau BOCES Education Partner award by (left to right) Nassau BOCES Board Members Martin Kaye and Fran Langsner.