New Jersey Alum to Receive Board of Directors Alumni Achievement Award

Dr. Jacob “Jake” Farbman, who serves as Director of Communications for the New Jersey Council of Community Colleges (NJCCC), is being honored by Phi Theta Kappa Honor Society with the 2017 Board of Directors Alumni Achievement Award. The award will be presented at PTK Catalyst, the organization’s annual convention, being held April 6-8, in Nashville.

This award is presented to alumni who have provided exemplary support and leadership to Phi Theta Kappa on a local, regional and/or national/international level over a period of several years.

Of Phi Theta Kappa’s more than 3 million alumni, only 22 have been selected as recipients of this prestigious honor. Phi Theta Kappa’s Board of Directors established this award to encourage and recognize continued support provided to the Society by outstanding alumni.

Farbman was inducted into the Alpha Pi Omega Chapter of Phi Theta Kappa at Salem Community College in 1994. More than 20 years later, he continues to be an enthusiastic and dedicated advocate for the Society.

In this role with NJCCC, he has overseen the annual PTK Day, which celebrates and recognizes members of the New Jersey All-State Academic Team. Additionally, Farbman has worked with the New Jersey college presidents to raise nearly $1 million annually in scholarships from New Jersey’s senior institutions. These scholarships are awarded to members of the New Jersey All-State Academic Team who pursue their bachelor’s degrees in New Jersey.  

In 2013, Farbman was instrumental in collaborating with the New Jersey PTK chapters and Middle States Region to promote and champion the first statewide Community College Completion Corps (C4) Initiative that engaged students, faculty, staff, administrators and community members throughout the state in a show of support for improving community college completion in New Jersey. Through his work in promoting this annual event, the NJC4 efforts have received local, state, and national media attention. Farbman has presented on the C4 initiative with Phi Theta Kappa staff at national conferences including the American Association of Community Colleges (AACC) and the League for Innovation.  

“Jake's continued commitment to serve the members of Phi Theta Kappa in New Jersey and the Middle States Region is indicative of how he truly believes in the power of the Society to change lives,” said Board Vice Chair Pattie Van Atter, who also serves as Middle States Regional Coordinator. “It drives him to reach out for more scholarship opportunities, obtain funding for chapter C4 events and recognize the very best of the best in New Jersey each year.

“The Middle States Region is grateful and proud to have Jake as a dedicated supporter and to count him among our outstanding alumni.”

In addition to his duties with the Council, Farbman serves as an adjunct professor of communication studies at The College of New Jersey (TCNJ) in Ewing. Since January 2001, he has taught Introduction to Communication Theory and Strategies of Public Relations.

Farbman holds a doctorate in education in community college leadership, a master’s degree in corporate public relations and a bachelor’s degree in communication, all from Rowan University. He also holds an associate degree in communications/journalism from Salem Community College.

“Phi Theta Kappa has played such an important role in my life. First as a student at Salem Community College and then throughout my career with the New Jersey Council of County Colleges,” Farbman said. “The work we have done to advance Phi Theta Kappa and community colleges in New Jersey has been and continues to be a team effort of advisors, students, faculty, staff, administrators, presidents, and trustees.

“I thank Phi Theta Kappa, and all of those who have worked with us in New Jersey, for this most cherished award."


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