Rutgers Preparatory School
1345 Easton Avenue | Somerset, NJ 08873
Phone: 732.545.5600

Careers at RPS

Welcome to Rutgers Prep!

As Dean of Faculty, I have been here since 2003 and have taught a variety of middle school classes ranging from math, STEAM, computers, cycle and science. Not only have I been a classroom teacher, but an advisor, a coach, and a mentor for fellow teachers.

If you are considering a career at Rutgers Prep, which I sincerely and enthusiastically recommend, please read on.

If I can clarify anything for you, please don't hesitate to reach out to me with any questions you might have.

Heather Vaccarino
Dean of Faculty
Middle School Science Teacher

Who We Are:

Rutgers Prep is a diverse Independent School. We are diverse in age, ethnicity, nationality, learning style, and culture. Our students range from age 3 to grade 12 and more than 50 languages are spoken in the homes of our students. Rutgers Prep is a family where teachers and students grow together. Teachers are able to really get to know their students due to our low 8:1 student to teacher ratio. Teachers also develop relationships with families, which enables support and growth of our students through their entire education.

Nandini Dutta

Chair of the World Language Department, Upper School Spanish Teacher

A member of our faculty for over 25 years and a parent of an RPS graduate, Nandini is involved in many facets of the School. From helping with Student Council and assisting with our annual Diwali celebration to being a mentor to our new teachers, Nandini is always there to help and is the type of teacher that makes Rutgers Prep the wonderful community it is. 

Pablito Lake

Chair of the Computer Education Program, Upper School Computer Science Teacher

In addition to teaching one of Rutgers Prep's three post-Advanced Placement courses (Advanced Software Design), Pablito Lake's students have developed two mobile apps for the United Nations.

Amy Merges

Kindergarten Teacher

Amy Merges has always striven to learn more about cultures other than her own and bring that knowledge into the classroom. Amy is an active member of our faculty social justice and diversity group, Advocates for Inclusion and Diversity (AID). She assists with our community-wide Diwali event each year and takes part in the faculty dance as well! In her classroom, Amy very thoughtfully diversifies her classroom reading list to make it representative of the world in which we live.

Stephen Mitchell

Middle School History and World Language Teacher

By engaging in thoughtful, creative, and interesting lessons about a variety of subjects, Stephen Mitchell provides his students with the tools and skills that will help them to be successful for years to come. He also makes a mean jambalaya.

Diversity & Inclusion:

Our faculty members are not only passionate teachers, but passionate people in making this world a better place. Faculty members joined together and created a committee to research information about social justice and diversity. This faculty group is called AID (Advocates for Inclusion in Diversity). AID seeks to harness the strengths that reside in our community’s diversity - including race, gender, ability, ethnicity, religion, financial circumstance, geography, and sexual orientation- to inspire faculty and students to become advocates of social justice.

AID assisted in creating a series of custom professional development modules to enable a deeper understanding and application of the foundations of diversity, equity, inclusion and belonging work. These modules are specific to our community. An essential advantage of this approach is that any faculty/staff member who joins us in the future can take advantage of these modules so the experience, vocabulary, and involvement remain common to all faculty.

These modules contain impactful content in the following six areas:

  • Emotional Intelligence (EQ) for You
  • EQ Relationships
  • EQ for the Classroom
  • Cultural Competency
  • What are the Challenges?
  • Addressing the Challenges

Teaching at RPS:

Depending on the division in which a faculty member teaches, their daily schedule can be quite varied. Faculty members teach in one or more of the three divisions: the Lower School, Middle School, and Upper School. In both the Middle School and the Upper School, a full-time teacher has 5 classes, advisory, and lunch duty. A Lower School teacher depending on the grade will have a much different type of schedule. Lower School teachers are expected to have a homeroom, teach all academic classes, and lunch duty. Lower School teachers have planning time during specials and Pre-K and JK have nap time daily.

Faculty members may also elect to coach (52% of coaches are classroom teachers and 81% of head coaches are classroom teachers), work in our After School Program (ASP), run clubs during or after school, play in the jazz band, help with drama productions, volunteer for MS/LS Dances, and participate in STEAM Night. Faculty members wear a lot of different hats, which means they get to know our students in different ways. We all know the way a student acts in the classroom isn’t necessarily how a student acts on a lacrosse field. Being visible and involved allows us to make stronger connections to our students that will enable us to learn what motivates our students.

Our Mission

Employee Benefits:

Rutgers Prep offers a robust benefits package, including:

  • Medical and prescription drug insurance with a choice of three plans
  • Dental insurance with a choice of three plans
  • 403B retirement plan with school matching program
  • School paid life insurance
  • Additional voluntary life insurance available
  • Temporary Disability Insurance Benefit
  • Voluntary Long Term Disability Benefit
  • Medical and dependent care flexible spending accounts
  • Financial support for college courses and approved classes or workshops
  • Tuition remission for children of employees
  • Tuition financial aid for children of employees
  • Wellness programs including yoga and mindfulness workshops
  • Campus free lunch daily during school year
  • Employee advocate to assist with benefit claims
  • Employee assistance program

Professional Development:

At Rutgers Prep, Faculty members are encouraged and fully supported to complete professional development that will enhance their curriculum and benefit their students. Faculty members have attended workshops through NJAIS, PBL Works, Mindful Schools, Learning and the Brain, Global Online Academy, NAIS, BER, graduate school programs, and doctorate programs to name a few. Faculty members have completed programs for certification for Google Training, Harkness Method, and more.

Cora Turlish explains, "At RPS I've had the opportunity to develop professionally according to my interests. I'm thrilled with how my job has evolved over the years and how the administration has supported me in the directions I've wanted to go”.

Colleen Vinchur explains, “Working at Rutgers Prep is fun! The friendships and partnerships are lifelong. The school is supportive and flexible. The longevity of our faculty says it all. Work=Family at Rutgers Prep. I am happy to come to work each day, with a smile on my face."

Health & Wellness:

Our commitment to health and wellness extends not only to our students, but to our faculty and staff as well. All of our employees have numerous opportunities to take part in activities and workshops to improve their physical and emotional wellbeing, including weekly faculty yoga classes, monthly mindful journaling sessions, and twice-a-year certification courses in CPR and First Aid. We also offer Lunch to Learn mini classes during lunch breaks on a variety of topics related to health and wellness.

One of the more popular components of our faculty and staff orientation at the start of each school year are our Wellness Workshops, a series of activities on a wide variety of wellness topics, including mindfulness, yoga, art, music, dance, fitness, nutrition, technology, mental health, and more.


Our campus is situated on 42 acres in Somerset, NJ. We are conveniently located to 287, NJ Turnpike, NJ Parkway, Route 1, and the New Brunswick train station. Students and teachers travel from as far as Philadelphia and New York City to our campus each day. We are also lucky enough to border the Delaware and Raritan Canal park and the Raritan River, which gives us easy access to the tow path that can be used for hiking, biking, fishing, walking, or running

We are within short driving distances from many small towns as well as parklands, and only 40 miles from Sandy Hook Beach and less than an hour drive to shore point towns like Long Branch or Asbury Park. The campus of Rutgers University is a 10-minute drive from campus, and Princeton University is a 25-minute drive.


What We Seek:

Rutgers Prep seeks passionate individuals who are curious and lifelong learners. We promote self-growth for the future endeavors of our faculty members through professional development. 77% of current faculty members have advanced degrees and 8 have doctorates. We seek individuals who teach the “whole” child. We encourage faculty members to be part of our community by supporting students in all divisions. Faculty members are supported to try new things and stay updated with the recent trends in education.

How to Apply:

Applications are always being accepted for employment at Rutgers Prep. If you are interested in submitting an application for employment at Rutgers Prep, please email Karen Engelmann ( If you are applying for a Substitute Teacher position, please contact Meredith Santowasso (