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South Huntington school district

A newly finished community mural that spans the bridge between the Huntington Station and South Huntington communities was unveiled on Huntington Awareness day.

The Town of Huntington celebrated the completion of Birchwood Intermediate School’s community mural painted on the Long Island Rail Road overpass over New York Avenue Sept. 22.

It’s a day our community celebrates not an individual’s, but our collective achievements,” Huntington Supervisor Chad Lupinacci (R) said. “This beautification project delights and inspires us, it continues the beautification that we’ve done. It helps bring us forward, inspires us, and let’s us know that we are one community working together.”

Annie Michaelian, former assistant principal at Birchwood, and Barbara Wright, a fifth-grade teacher at Birchwood, led a team of students, teachers and staff to painting a mural along the LIRR overpass that highlights Huntington’s unique landmarks, features and cultural diversity.

Area residents should be able to easily identify some of the iconic landmarks painted on the overpass including the Huntington Lighthouse and the southwest entrance to Heckscher Park, and a stylized version of the park’s fountains and bridges. These items are depicted as drawn by Birchwood’s students.

The best part of this experience was as we were painting our community members are walking past us and thanking us for beauitfying the train station,” Birchwood principal Anthony Ciccarelli said. “It was touching to all of us, it put smile on our faces. We did it for the love of our community.”

In the last few weeks since TBR News Media first reported on the mural, the finishing touches including the names of the schools in Huntington and South Huntington school districts have been added along with a quote by Walt Whitman, Huntington’s famous poet and journalist.  A flag was also added to an airplane to thank Aboff’s Paints in Huntington for donating all the paint, brushes, rollers and supplies needed.

See more photos of the new Huntington Station LIRR mural while in progress, click here. 

Celso Garcia Mendez. Photo from SCPD

Suffolk County police arrested a Huntington Station man for allegedly stalking a teen while she was walking to her bus stop for more than a month.

Celso Garcia Mendez approached a 13-year-old female and allegedly handed her a note as she was walking to her bus stop on Sixth Avenue in Huntington Station on Feb. 8 at approximately 7:30 a.m. Garcia Mendez, 25, left in a silver Chrysler sedan. Officers obtained a description of the man, surveyed the area and identified the suspect.

South Huntington School officials said they were informed of the incident Feb. 8. They issued a stranger danger alert on the school district’s website and encouraged the community to report any further suspicious activity to the district and the police.

An investigation by 2nd Precinct Crime Section officers determined Garcia Mendez had approached and attempted to communicate with the teen, who previously asked him to stop, near her bus stop for approximately one month.

Garcia Mendez was charged with fourth-degree stalking and endangering the welfare of a child. He was scheduled for arraignment at First District Court in Central Islip on Feb. 9.

Following the arrest, the school district posted an update announcing Garcia Mendez’s arrest on their website.

“We are pleased to inform you as a result of the cooperation between South Huntington schools, 2nd Precinct, and the family, the individual described in yesterday’s stranger danger message was arrested this morning,” read the district’s post. This is an important reminder that the strength and safety of our community rests on the communication between all constituents.”

Superintendent David Bennardo and Stimson Middle School Principal Edwin Smith also thanked local law enforcement for their quick response. They asked South Huntington parents to make sure to discuss personal safety and the importance of reporting suspicious activity with their children.

This post was updated Feb. 9 at 10:45 a.m. with additional information. 

 

Students observe and learn how a manufacturing company works. Photo from South Huntington school district

By Colm Ashe

Huntington institutions are meeting the future head on as they prepare local students for jobs in manufacturing technology.

LaunchPad in Huntington, Workforce Development Institute and South Huntington school district have teamed up with student leaders from grades 6-12, STEM teachers and more to create the Manufacturing Technology Task Force, an initiative aiming to provide teachers and students with hands-on experience with industry-relevant technology.

In the last 12 months, more than 200 Long Island manufacturers posted at least 2,300 tech-related jobs. However, some parents and students are not aware these jobs exist right in their home area.

The partnership’s overall mission is to create a program that mutually benefits students, teachers and local businesses alike. The MTTF plans to teach applicable skill sets and provide a fine-tuned curriculum accompanied by internship and apprenticeship opportunities for prospective high school students.

On May 27, WDI organized a school trip to East/West Industries, a Ronkonkoma manufacturing company that develops and produces aircraft seats and life support systems for high-performance military aircraft. Kids from grades 6-12 and school staff toured the facility and learned about the entire process with special emphasis on the engineering and 3-D printing. They also viewed video footage showcasing the products, design and testing, and got the chance to meet with staff. East/West has further plans to develop a 3-D printing curriculum so students can learn the skills and careers possibilities waiting in their own backyard.

That same weekend, the students got a taste of how this work can affect the world around them as they watched Blue Angel F/A-18 Hornets fly over Long Island at the Jones Beach air show, knowing the pilots were sitting on survival kits they had seen manufactured.

This relationship between curious students and surrounding business is the focal point of the MTTF’s mission. South Huntington assistant superintendent for instruction and curriculum, Jared Bloom, hopes this collaborative effort will produce “a first-of-its-kind curriculum that meets the needs of the district while providing experts in the field an opportunity to share their vision and provide direct guidance and support.”

Phil Rugile, director of LaunchPad in Huntington, echoes this sentiment, saying the organization is working toward a future where “students develop skills that are appropriate and relevant to open positions that are not getting filled.” Rugile believes this is “a huge step towards creating a meaningful alliance that will produce tangible results.”

This initiative is a part of a bigger mission to connect Long Island schools with manufacturers in an effort to generate a sustainable workforce pipeline and connect emerging workforces with job opportunities.

At the recent Manufacturing Innovation Conference co-hosted by WDI and LaunchPad Huntington, guests learned there are thousands of well-paid manufacturing occupations — particularly in the field of technology. Throughout the last 12 months, more than 200 Long Island manufacturers posted at least 2,300 tech-related jobs. However, some parents and students are not aware these jobs exist right in their home area. This is why MTTF joined forces to herald in the optimistic news regarding Long Island’s bright future in job growth and development.

The ripples of these progressive actions go beyond merely providing security — they are instilling students with a profound new sense of purpose. When Tyler Daniel from Stimson Middle School was asked what a manufacturing job is, he responded, “When you make a product that makes a difference in people’s lives.” Clearly, this initiative is teaching kids how to succeed in the ever-changing world of technological advancement.

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