Robin Piccapietra grew up on Long Island and attended SUNY Buffalo graduating with a Bachelor of Science in Business with a Minor in Economics. Robin began her career as an equity trader at Merrill Lynch in New York and after 14 years in this industry, Robin’s aunt, a lifelong educator, encouraged her to pursue education. She obtained a substitute teaching certificate, then entered the alternate route program and began teaching business studies at Hoboken High School in 2003. Robin received her Master’s Degree in Education Administration in 2005 from Saint Peter’s University. In 2010, Robin became Vice Principal and in 2012, Principal of Hoboken High School. Over the past 10 years, Robin has worked to make Hoboken High School a premier choice for all students offering academic programs such as PLTW, and created the AP academy offering Pre AP and AP curriculum in grades 9-12. Robin also recognizes the importance of infusing the fine and performing arts throughout the curriculum. Robin’s students have the ability to take theater, video production, music production, and both traditional art and photoshop art. The co-curricular program offers award winning theater productions and the Rockin Redwings Marching Band. Robin also recognizes the importance of community and Hudson County has awarded her: Italian American Educator of the Year as well as an Honorary Irish American Educator of the Year.


The Governor’s Awards in Arts Education began in 1980 to promote awareness and appreciation of the arts, recognizing the creativity, talent and leadership of the award winners. Each year, awards are presented to approximately 20 educators and 80 students. National and statewide organizations select the students for their exemplary work in creative writing, speech, dance, music, theatre and visual arts and the leaders for their exceptional commitment and contribution to arts education. The program also recognizes arts educators and arts education advocates, whose leadership has helped nurture the development of students in the arts across the state.

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The Governor’s Awards event is a partnership of the Arts Ed NJ, the Department of Education, Art Pride New Jersey Foundation, the Department of State and the New Jersey State Council on the Arts. Additional support is provided by: the Afro-Academic, Cultural, Technological and Scientific Olympics; Art Educators of New Jersey; Art Administrators of New Jersey; Dance New Jersey; New Jersey Council of Teachers of English; New Jersey Speech and Debate League; New Jersey Music Educators Association; New Jersey Performing Arts Center; Writer's Theatre of New Jersey; Speech and Theatre Association of New Jersey; New Jersey Thespians and Young Audiences of New Jersey and Eastern Pennsylvania. The cooperating organizations, award sponsors and individual members of the planning council dedicate their time to make sure that excellence in the arts is rewarded, and work tirelessly throughout the year to plan this special event. The Governor's Awards in Arts Education ceremony are a major collaborative effort of the arts, education and state government.