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BRIDGEWATER – On March 9, 2023, Jonathon “Jack” Paulis of Hillsborough was named the Unsung Hero recipient for Somerset County Vocational & Technical High School (SCVTHS) by the Somerset County School Boards Association.  The Unsung Hero Award honors those students who make a difference within their district and make their districts better simply by being a part of it.

Photo: (l-r) SCVTHS School Psychologist Dr. Melissa Norrbom, SCVTHS Unsung Hero Award recipient Johnathon “Jack” Paulis of Hi

Photo: (l-r) SCVTHS School Psychologist Dr. Melissa Norrbom, SCVTHS Unsung Hero Award recipient Johnathon “Jack” Paulis of Hillsborough, and SCVTHS Guidance Counselor Maureen Lawler pose for a photo with Jack’s award certificate.

During the award ceremony, SCVTHS School Psychologist Dr. Melissa Norrbom, who nominated Jack for the award, shared, “Somerset County Vocational & Technical High School is proud to nominate Jonathon (Jack) Paulis for the Unsung Hero Award.  Jack is enrolled in our Health Occupations CTE program.  Jack started as a shared-time student and switched to full-time his sophomore year.  He maintained his connection to Hillsborough High School by participating in their Marching Band throughout his high school career.  Jack is described at vo-tech as one of the most genuinely nice young men we have had the pleasure of working with.  He is a hard-working student who cares passionately about his chosen career major.  Jack endured significant family stressors in the past few years including the long-term illness and eventual loss of his father.  Jack was directly involved in the medical care in his home and stepped up to a leadership role in caring for his younger sister.  This experience, as well as his education in our Health Occupations program, solidified Jack’s decision to pursue a career in nursing.  Future patients and families will greatly benefit from Jack’s gentle and thoughtful nature.  He is our unsung hero.”

After receiving the award, Jack stated, “I am absolutely honored by this award.  Thank you to those who helped me, who recognized me, and understood what my family and I had to endure. Truly, thank you.” 

Jack went on to speak of the recognition by saying, “But speaking personally, when taking care of my dad, I never strived for an award, or recognition of any kind.  It was the right thing to do.  The man who helped raise me, who gave me his love and affection, who always strived to help me through anything, and who gave up so much of what he wanted in order to make sure my family and I were all right.  He raised me to always help those you love.  When his condition overtook him and he needed my help, his past guidance taught me to be there for him, no matter how difficult things got. I hope I was.

I wish he could be with us now.  My Mom, my sister, they miss him every day.  I miss him every day.  But I know he's proud of who I am, and what I've yet to become.  Love you, Dad.”

For more information on this story, please contact James Strickhart at (908) 526 – 8900 x7169 or