Cheltenham senior named ECAT’s May Student of the Month, CSD appoints new assistant director of business services

Nelissa Bryan, a Cheltenham High School senior enrolled in Eastern Center for Arts and Technology’s Culinary Arts program, has been named the May 2024 Student of the Month by the Willow Grove school.

From Eastern’s announcement:

Nelissa’s journey into the Culinary Arts program at EASTERN began with a family connection, as her aunt, is also a proud graduate of the program. Her passion for cooking and baking runs deep, inherited from her Abuela and great-great-grandmother, who passed down their culinary talents with love. Nelissa thrives in the program’s hands-on learning environment, eagerly embracing every opportunity to hone her skills and prepare for her culinary future. Her ultimate goal is to one day open two cafes. One will honor her great-great-grandmother’s baking legacy, featuring an array of macaroons, cookies, and specialty cupcakes. The other cafe will be a place where the underprivileged can experience the joy of fine dining, offering a unique and inclusive culinary experience. These cafes will not only showcase Nelissa’s culinary skills but also her commitment to sharing her love of food with others.

At EASTERN, Nelissa goes above and beyond as a student ambassador for the Culinary Arts program. She has represented EASTERN at several major recruiting events, including the Career Expo visit, where potential students explore the school’s offerings, and Open House, a chance for local families to tour the campus and meet instructors. Nelissa’s involvement extends to EASTERN’s Student Focus Group, where she contributes her insights, and she was chosen to be on a panel discussing and addressing microaggressions, displaying her leadership and advocacy skills. In February 2023, Nelissa was recognized with a student spotlight during EASTERN’s Black History Month celebration. At EASTERN’s 2023 Awards Night, Nelissa received the Director’s Award and the Straight A Award.

Nelissa is a strong advocate for diversity and inclusion, proudly embracing her identity as part of the LGBTQ community. At Cheltenham High School, she is deeply engaged in the theatre program, highlighting her talents on stage. Outside of school, Nelissa is a dedicated dancer and serves as the captain of the Enon Tabernacle Baptist Church Drill Team.

After graduating from EASTERN and Cheltenham High School, Nelissa plans to attend Johnson & Wales University. There, she will pursue Culinary Arts and work toward earning a master’s in culinary science, solidifying her expertise in the culinary field.

In related news, Nelson Matos has been appointed as the assistant director of business services at Cheltenham School District.

He was board approved at the April 9 legislative board meeting and began his tenure on April 15, the district said.

“I am excited and honored to begin working in the Cheltenham School District,” Matos said. “I look forward to serving the district and collaborating with all of you and serving the needs of the diverse and talented school community.”

Matos comes to Cheltenham from Andesa Services, Inc., an employee-owned provider of policy lifecycle solutions for the life insurance and annuities industry. Matos has held a number of positions of increasing responsibility since joining the firm in 2012, starting as a customer service representative and working his way up to quality assurance analyst, then a business analyst, his most recent position.

As a business analyst, Matos managed the elicitation and documentation of business requirements; created mentoring and training programs for junior business analysts; facilitated the allocation of internal and external resources related to client projects; and coordinated the efforts of cross functional teams to meet client needs. He led and coordinated multiple large projects and supported the successful implementation of client specifications.

Matos is also the founder of Matos Solutions, which prepares federal, state, and local income tax returns for individuals and businesses. Matos Solutions serves to empower communities, business owners, and individuals to expand their financial literacy and take ownership of their finances through the avenue of tax education, tax planning, and tax preparation.

Since 2023, Matos has volunteered at the Bridge Church of God in Allentown, Pa., as the lead financial officer. In that time, he has streamlined the church’s financial process and improved the accuracy, timeliness, and quality of reporting to the church’s leadership for important budget and business funding decisions.

A resident of Bethlehem, Matos graduated from Bloomsburg University in 2010 with a bachelor of science in business administration, accounting.

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Photos: CSD