LONGTIME EDUCATOR AWARDED CLAES NOBEL EDUCATOR DISTINCTION
Longtime educator and Marianas Baptist Academy Principal Rev. Ramiro Hernandez Trinidad was recently awarded the Claes Nobel Educator Distinction by Claes Nobel, the founder and chairman of the National Society of High School Scholars, at the George Washington University Lister Auditorium in Washington, D. C.
The award, presented by the National Society of High School Scholars, recognized Trinidad for his excellence in teaching and for the encouragement of and dedication to the academic success of students at Marianas Baptist Academy.
Out of 40,000 nominated educators across the nation, Trinidad was chosen to join a group of 20 educators who were bestowed the title of “Educators of Distinction”.
According to the NSHSS website, student members have the opportunity to select one high school teacher, counselor, or administrator who has made a positive impact on their lives during their high school career and nominate them for the distinction.
MBA 2014 alumnus Kanata Omori nominated Trinidad. Omori said that he nominated Trinidad for being “not only an exceptional principal but also an outstanding individual.”
He added, “ He has been my principal for six years and has never failed to teach me numerous life lessons every year.”
Omori described Trinidad as a caring, passionate, determined, and motivated person.
“Those are the characteristics that make an educator, and those are the characteristics, which Mr. Ramiro Trinidad possesses,” he said.
“Though I have received many awards before, this Educator Distinction is an opportunity to share to my colleagues in this profession that teaching does not end in a classroom,” he told the Saipan Tribune. “True teaching goes beyond academics.”
Trinidad is a well-known educator on island with years of teaching in various capacities under his belt.
He earned his Masters of Education in Educational Administration from the University of Hawaii at Manoa as well as a Bachelor of Science in Industrial and Management Engineering and Pastoral Theology and Christian Education degree.
Prior to his career at the sole Baptist Academy on island, Trinidad worked as a University Professor in the College of Engineering and University Professor in Merchant Marine. He served as vice-principal of MBA from 1987 to 2004 and has now been the principal of MBA for 10 years.
He said that despite offers for a teaching position at prestigious universities like Johns Hopkins University, Saipan became his lifeblood. He explained that the island is where God called him to serve for over the past two decades of his life.
As the top administrator at MBA, he has also taught various subjects ranging from high school science and math to bible class. Trinidad has also proven to be a passionate educator both in and outside of the classroom.
Under the guidance of Trinidad, several students from MBA have placed in the top percentage of winners of local Mathcounts competitions in the past decade and have gone off to represent the islands on a national level.
Trinidad can also be seen on the basketball and volleyball court after school supporting the school’s athletic teams as a coach.
His daughter and MBA alumna, Gospel Trinidad, said, “I feel very proud that my Dad was distinguished as an educator who worked very hard in his field for many years.”
Fellow MBA 2009 graduate Dencio V. Manglona recounted his time as a student.
“I first met Mr. Trinidad when I was just in middle school for the then-popular Mathcounts competition. He revealed to be the basic principles that lead to a successful life: we started our day with a prayer, studied math, and then worked together to tackle problems we could not solve alone. My encounter with him characterized his devotion to faith and his passion for his students, which I have seen ever since that day many years ago.” He added, “I’m glad to hear that someone else has recognized all his work, after all his years of service to his community.”
A more recent graduate, Alina Ishikawa, said, “no words can describe how thankful I am for everything Pastor Trinidad has done for me in terms of education. I would like to thank him so much for his guidance, time and effort he put into helping me become who I am today.”
Various graduates of the school have furthered their education at prestigious academic institutions like Harvard, Princeton, Vanderbilt University, University of Michigan, University of Virginia, and University of California, Berkeley.
Trinidad told the Saipan Tribune that he considers teaching his highest calling.
“It’s my highest calling to minister to students of different walks of life to be able to impart Christian education based on the Word of God,” he said.
He added that his ultimate goal as an educator is to reach students with the gospel message of Christ unto salvation.
“I aim to prepare them spiritually and academically to a higher learning as critical thinkers and as thankful citizens of our community.”
Trinidad hopes to see more academic resources available for students in the CNMI.
He said, “Education in CNMI is progressive. In fact, most of our graduates both private and public are very competitive anywhere in the world. Though, we are a minute island in the Pacific, our students are giants in the mainland. We need to have more resources and use every available resource to our advantage in terms of educating ourselves.”
At the end of the school day, he said, “Life’s lessons is when you become a part of your student’s life and dreams to become a productive and grateful individual.”