Honor Slain BCC Student Thursday and Raise Awareness About Domestic Violence


Jeanette Falotico, Staff Writer

Join Brookdale Community College in “Lighting Up the Garden” to honor Stephanie Nicole Parze, who was killed by an abusive ex-boyfriend in 2019.
“We do something every year to celebrate Stephanie’s birthday. This year we are working with Brookdale to host a ceremony and fundraiser to keep her spirit alive,” said Ed Parze, father of Stephanie Parze and co-founder of the Stephanie Nicole Parze Foundation.
Every year Women in Learning and Leadership plans an event intended to raise awareness of domestic violence. “In October WILL hosted a panel based on the trending hashtag “#Every1KnowsSome1, and this is how we were introduced to Stephanie,” said Amanda Zelevansky, 19, president of Women in Learning and Leadership and a business administration major from Howell.
“We reached out to the Parze family in hopes of collaborating with their foundation and honoring Stephanie. As you can see, everyone knows someone, and because of that, it is our job as advocates for women to educate and support the members of our community,” Zelevansky said.
Domestic violence education helps individuals, friends and families identify the warning signs of abuse. “Most of the time, domestic violence victims do not realize they are a victim until it is too late. Even when victims are aware of the situation, they do not know where to go to for help or are too afraid to ask,” Zelevansky said.
“The more information we can get out to the public, the better it is; a lot of this is about lack of people knowing, lack of awareness and lack of knowing how to read the signs,” Parze said.
“I am humbled to be able to participate in the “Light up the Garden” event for Stephanie Parze, for it is important to honor her, and share her story to spread awareness,” said Victoria Bahary, a 19-year-old media studies major from Ocean Township.
Everyone is encouraged to join in honoring Stephanie 5 p.m. Thursday Feb. 7 ,at the Monarch Waystation and Meditation Garden near parking lot seven, next to the Student Life Center at Brookdale Community College.
To learn more about the Stephanie Nicole Parze Foundation, visit their website at www.snpfoundation.org. If you or someone you know needs help, please call the National Domestic Violence hotline at 800.799.7233 or visit their website at www.thehotline.org.