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Suffolk County Community College

Suffolk County Community College’s libraries and STEM departments held its annual STEM Day on each of its three campuses on April 10. The college’s STEM Day is now in its ninth successful year.

This dynamic annual event spotlights the ingenuity and talent of students and faculty engaged in the STEM disciplines at Suffolk. From experiments to impressive technology demonstrations, attendees were treated to a diverse range of presentations by students learning under the guidance and direction of their faculty advisors. The event program also allowed faculty members to feature the essence of their program disciplines and the approaches utilized in the college’s classes and labs.

“Each year, the underlying spirit of this event remains constant – fostering engagement and excitement for STEM disciplines among students and the wider community,” said Dr. Edward Bonahue, President, Suffolk County Community College.

One noteworthy aspect of STEM Day is its role in preparing students for future academic endeavors. Suffolk provides a unique, educational enrichment environment for students pursuing careers in the science, technology, engineering, and mathematics fields. As one example, through the National Science Foundation’s I-SUCCESS Program, the college sponsors 18 scholars annually with tuition and enhanced supports to increase their continued academic and career success in the STEM fields.

About Suffolk County Community College

Suffolk County Community College is the largest community college in the State University of New York (SUNY) system, enrolling approximately 21,000 students at its three campuses in Selden, Brentwood and Riverhead. Suffolk offers the Associate in Arts (A.A.), Associate in Science (A.S.), and Associate in Applied Science (A.A.S.) degrees, as well as a variety of certificate programs. Offering affordable college tuition, a highly respected Honors program, workforce training programs, extensive extracurricular activities, championship athletic teams, and numerous transfer programs, Suffolk is a first-choice college for Long Island students. Visit them online at sunysuffolk.edu.

Faculty, administrators, staff and current students at Suffolk County Community College will welcome new and prospective students to open house on Sunday, April 7, from 12 noon to 2 p.m. Open House will take place at all three of the college’s campuses in Riverhead, Selden and Brentwood, as well as its Culinary Arts and Hospitality Center in Riverhead.

College faculty and administrators will greet visitors and offer detailed information about Suffolk’s varied degree and certificate programs. Admissions staff will be available to help students and parents answer questions and complete the admissions process, and financial aid representatives will provide information about recent changes to FAFSA, as well as the grants and loan process. In addition, visitors will have an opportunity to learn about the numerous scholarships available for students enrolled at Suffolk.

The open house will also provide students with an opportunity to:

  • meet faculty
  • tour campuses
  • learn about student organizations and clubs

Veterans should note that campus representatives will be available to provide educational and transitional services information.

“We look forward to welcoming students and their families as they learn about our academic programs and student support services,” said Joanne E. Braxton, Suffolk’s Dean of Enrollment Management, adding “visitors will also have the opportunity to tour the campus with student guides who can answer questions.”

Students and their families are encouraged to RSVP by visiting this link:sunysuffolk.edu/OpenHouse

 

Suffolk County Community College’s Flecker Gallery, 533 College Road, Selden will host a High School Art Exhibition featuring the young talent of Suffolk County high school students. The exhibition will take place from March 18 through April 1. A reception and award ceremony will take place on March 21 from 5-7 p.m. The awards will be announced at 6 p.m.

There will be awards for best of show, as well as additional awards for best 2D, 3D, and digital art. The following high schools that will be included in the exhibition: Patchogue Medford, Centereach, Mount Sinai, Rocky Point, Newfield, Sayville, Islip, Stony Brook, William Floyd, Sachem North, Sachem East, Comsewogue and Longwood. The art work will include submissions from students in the ninth through twelfth grade. All Mediums are accepted including painting, photography, collage, and drawing, sculpture, digital art and time-based media.

About Suffolk County Community College

Suffolk County Community College is the largest community college in the State University of New York (SUNY) system, enrolling approximately 21,000 students at its three campuses in Selden, Brentwood and Riverhead. Suffolk offers the Associate in Arts (A.A.), Associate in Science (A.S.), and Associate in Applied Science (A.A.S.) degrees, as well as a variety of certificate programs. Offering affordable college tuition, a highly respected Honors program, workforce training programs, extensive extracurricular activities, championship athletic teams, and numerous transfer programs, Suffolk is a first-choice college for Long Island students. Visit us online at sunysuffolk.edu.

 

Suffolk County Community College students and administrators meet with Carl E. Heastie, Speaker of the NY State Assembly, at the state capital. Photo courtesy of SCCC

Suffolk County Community College students and administrators recently visited the state capital to advocate for funding and support for the college’s operating funds for the benefit of the students.

Students spoke with members of the state legislature, including Carl E. Heastie, Speaker of the NY State Assembly; Steve Stern, State Assemblyman, District 10; Mario R. Mattera, State Senator, 2nd District; Monica R. Martinez, State Senator, 4th District; Fred W. Theile, Jr. Assemblyman, District 1. The students shared their personal stories, goals, and opportunities for investment in higher education.

About Suffolk County Community College

Suffolk County Community College is the largest community college in the State University of New York (SUNY) system, enrolling approximately 21,000 students at its three campuses in Selden, Brentwood and Riverhead. Suffolk offers the Associate in Arts (A.A.), Associate in Science (A.S.), and Associate in Applied Science (A.A.S.) degrees, as well as a variety of certificate programs. Offering affordable collegetuition, a highly respected Honors program, workforce training programs, extensive extracurricular activities, championship athletic teams, and numerous transfer programs, Suffolk is a first-choice college for Long Island students. Visit us online at sunysuffolk.edu.

 

The Suffolk County Community College Cybersecurity Club Team (left to right): Dylan Zagal, Enoch Gomez, Gabriel Zambrana, Ryan Riazi, Justin Trieu, Matthew Waskiewicz, Wilson Pineda, Jose Mancero, Manual Gomez, Giorgio Lomanto. Photo from SCCC

Students in Suffolk County Community College’s Cybersecurity Club recently competed in the National Centers of Academic Excellence in Cybersecurity (NCAE) Cybergames Competition against a full slate of four-year CAE designated schools. Suffolk had a remarkable third place finish, just behind Champlain College and Penn State University, according to a press release.

The NCAE Cyber Games is dedicated to inspiring college students to enter the exciting realm of cyber competitions. Suffolk Team members Ryan Riazi (Captain), Enoch Gomez, Manual Gomez, Giorgio Lomanto, Jose Mancero, Wilson Pineda, Justin Trieu, Matthew Waskiewicz, Dylan Zagal, Gabriel Zambrana exhibited dedication, enthusiasm and skills that align with industry-recognized CompTIA Security+ competencies and the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) and the National Initiative for Cybersecurity Education (NICE) frameworks.

The group participated in two computer security games concurrently. The first was a type of computer security game called a Capture-the-Flag (CTF). In CTF games, players race to solve security-related challenges, often searching for digital “flags” hidden on servers, in encrypted text, or in applications. Challenges within the CTF are open-ended and require expertise and skills in a wide range of security-related topics: computer forensics, cryptography, network penetration testing, web security, system or network administration, among others. When a player submits a flag (or correct answer), they receive points for solving the challenge. The player or team with the highest cumulative score at the end of the game wins. The second piece of the competition was defending and responding to real-world cybersecurity attacks against the provided computer infrastructure. The team was scored on their capacity to maintain the operational ability of these systems by responding to and remediating against these attacks.

“Through hard work, dedication, and a high-caliber curriculum, Suffolk students were able to surpass teams from selective universities, showcasing the college’s exceptional quality of education and the commitment of Suffolk’s faculty. Their success in real-world scenarios reflects the transformative power of the college’s curriculum,” said Cybersecurity Club Advisor Jon Sadowski.

To learn more about Suffolk’s exciting Cybersecurity program, visit: sunysuffolk.edu/cybersecurity.

About Suffolk County Community College

Suffolk County Community College is the largest community college in the State University of New York (SUNY) system, enrolling approximately 21,000 students at its three campuses in Selden, Brentwood and Riverhead. Suffolk offers the Associate in Arts (A.A.), Associate in Science (A.S.), and Associate in Applied Science (A.A.S.) degrees, as well as a variety of certificate programs. Offering affordable college tuition, a highly respected Honors program, workforce training programs, extensive extracurricular activities, championship athletic teams, and numerous transfer programs, Suffolk is a first-choice college for Long Island students. Visit us online at sunysuffolk.edu.

 

From left, Plumbers Local 200 Organizer Edward Tedla, Business Agent Joseph Squicciarini, Business Manager - Financial Secretary/Treasurer Richard P. Brooks, Suffolk County Community College President Dr. Edward Bonahue, NY State Senator Mario Mattera and Sylvia A. Diaz, PhD, LMSW, executive director of the Suffolk Community College Foundation. Photo courtesy of SCCC

The Suffolk Community College Foundation’s Education Without Limits campaign that supports students with critical financial backing to help them achieve their academic and career goals, recently got a $3,000 boost from Plumbers Union Local 200.

Union representatives, including Local 200 Business Agent and New York State Senator Mario Mattera, Joseph Squicciarini, Organizer Edward Tedla and Business Manager Richard Brooks visited the Ammerman Campus in Selden to present their generous donation to college officials, including College President Dr. Edward Bonahue and Foundation Director Sylvia Diaz.

“We are incredibly grateful for the generous $3,000 donation from Plumbers Local 200 to our Education Without Limits Campaign,” said Suffolk County Community College President Dr. Edward Bonahue. “The donation helps us provide scholarships and other support to our students who are facing financial hardship. New York State Senator Mario Mattera and Plumbers Local 200 are valued partners of Suffolk County Community College, and we are proud to have their support.”

“Suffolk’s Plumbers Local 200 protect the health of all Long Islanders while promoting economic equality, building worker power, helping workers to win increases in pay, better benefits, and safer working conditions, and we are delighted to partner with them to support Suffolk’s promising students along their pathways to success,” said Sylvia A. Diaz, PhD, LMSW, executive director of the Suffolk Community College Foundation.

“As a longtime member and leader of Plumbers Local 200, I am extremely proud of the generosity of all our hardworking men and women. Suffolk County Community College is opening doors for so many young men and women with the Education Without Limits program and that is so important to our future as a region. All of our students should have the ability to chase their dreams and this will give that chance to all who are ready to work,” added Senator Mattera.

Suffolk Cyber Team: TOP, L to R: Wilson Pineda (Copiague), Dylan Zagal (Islip), Enoch Gomez (Brentwood); BOTTOM L to R: Justin Trieu (Central Islip), Ryan Riazi (Medford). Photo from SCCC

Suffolk County Community College students Ryan Riazi, Jose Miguel Mancero, Wilson Pineda, Justin Trieu, Enoch Gomez, Manuel Gomez and Dylan Zagal recently competed in the Fall 2023 National Cyber League Competition, finished 50th overall in the nation, were the fourth highest ranked community college team in the nation and the top SUNY school in the national cyber security competition.

The competition featured participation from 8,583 students from 802 high schools, colleges, and universities nationwide, representing all 50 states.

Overall, Suffolk placed:

  • 50th in the Nation
  • Top 10% of all competitors
  • 33rd amongst CAE-CD designated schools
  • 21st overall in the East Region
  • 4th Highest Ranked Community College in the Nation
  • Top School in the SUNY System 

“The outstanding results these students achieved comes from transforming the knowledge gained from the high caliber curriculum at Suffolk and executing those skills in a real-world scenario.  Being amongst the dedication and enthusiasm of this group of students is amazing,” said Cybersecurity Club Advisor Jon Sadowski.

The NCL Competition is a biannual event that enables students to prepare and test themselves against practical cybersecurity challenges that they will likely face in the workforce, such as identifying hackers from forensic data, pen testing and auditing vulnerable websites, recovering from ransomware attacks and additional cyber skill sets.

Students that participate in the NCL receive valuable performance data through individualized Scouting Reports, which aligns their experience to industry certifications and government standards. The reports enable students to showcase tangible evidence of their technical skills to employers.

About the National Cyber League
Established in 2011 by an alliance of public agencies dedicated to developing the next generation of cybersecurity professionals, the National Cyber League is a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization aiming to help students develop, practice and validate their cybersecurity knowledge and skills. To learn more, visit nationalcyberleague.org.

By Julianne Mosher

Your parents always said, “two wrongs don’t make a right.” Well, that’s not necessarily true. Sometimes two wrongs continue into three, four, five… and then a whole show ends up collapsing.

In Suffolk County Community College’s latest Selden production, “The Play That Goes Wrong,” the audience is watching a play within a play and it will have you laughing from the moment you sit down. 

Written by Henry Lewis, Jonathan Sayer and Henry Shields, the show starts off with some audience improv — two cast members are setting up the stage and communicating with everyone settling in. From the moment you walk in, shenanigans are already starting — like fixing a broken mantlepiece, looking for a lost dog and trying to figure out where someone’s Duran Duran CD went. 

Then we’re introduced to “The Cornley Polytechnic Drama Society’s” director, Chris Bean, who gives us a little history lesson on the troupe. Known for their productions including Two Sisters, The Lion and the Wardrobe, Cat, and James and the Peach, it’s safe to say the group is a little unlucky and a little under budget. But that doesn’t stop the actors from giving it their all with their latest production of The Murder at Havensham Manor — a 1930s murder mystery play.

When the curtain rises, mayhem ensues and it’s chaotic from beginning to end. 

Delaina Wratchford, who plays Bean, who plays the inspector, plans on heading to Broadway after her time at SCCC, and with this performance, she’s going to get on that stage sooner than later. 

That being said, what’s interesting and really special about this show is that each actor is playing two parts — they’re playing another actor who is then playing a character in The Murder at Havensham Manor. Writing that out sounds confusing, but trust me, when you watch it, it is so seamless that it makes perfect sense and there is not one flaw in it … other than all the chaotic bad luck the actors have during their performance. 

Jerry Ewald, who plays Robert Grove, who plays Thomas Colleymoore, lights up the room with his humor and his ability to stay in character even throughout the intermission. The same goes for Aiden Gomez (Jonathan, then Charles Haversham), William Begley (Max Bennett, then Cecil Haversham) and Carson Warkenthien (Dennis Tyde, then Perkins). They were able to switch back and forth between their characters to the play performers with ease. 

Even the “background” performers have a huge part in the show. First-time SCCC performer Scott Dowd (who plays Trevor the sound tech) and Kayla Pisano (Annie) bring another level to the show — because they represent people that we can relate to, personally.

One slight disclaimer, without giving too much away. You’re going to see a lot of stunts in this show, and for performers like Wratchford, Ewald and Michaela Fitzsimmons (Sandra Wilkinson, then Florence Colleymoore), you’re going to wince, but be so impressed by their professionalism under these dire movements.

So, that leads to a huge kudos to the set design staff. The stage is set up like an old-time parlor, with two levels and an elevator. The carpentry and engineering that was put into this design — created by students — is truly something you’d see on Broadway, possibly even better.

The show is special in many ways, but an interesting fact is that it was directed by Bryan Kimmelman — a Smithtown native who studied on the same stage as a theater major nearly two decades ago. 

“I’ve never forgotten my two years here,” he said. “And it’s carried with me the last 10 years with anything professional I’ve done.”

Kimmelman said that when he was a student, he knew the caliber of the education he was receiving at Suffolk.

“I know what comes out of this school and they always produce quality work,” he said. “People are going to come here and see young people working towards being a professional on all levels. So, if you want to see professionals in their moment of prime, then you need to see this show.”

Tickets for The Play That Goes Wrong are on sale now for viewings on Nov. 16, 17 and 18 at 7:30 p.m. and Nov. 19 at 2 p.m. at the Shea Theatre, Islip Arts Building on the Ammerman Campus, 533 College Road, Selden. General admission is $15, veterans and students 16 years of age or younger is $10. Suffolk students with current ID can receive two free tickets.

For more information or to order, visit sunysuffolk.edu/spotlight or call 631-451-4163.

By Julianne Mosher

Theater students at Suffolk County Community College in Selden are bringing a new perspective to an Ancient Greek tragedy with Antigone Now. The powerful show will be presented in Theatre 119 through Oct. 15.

Set on an empty, somber stage with just a staircase and bullet hole panels decorating the walls, Antigone Now is a modern look at one of Sophocles’ earliest surviving plays, Antigone. The hour-long, one act play follows Antigone (Angie Barrientos), a once royal whose brothers and parents are killed amidst war. 

Her sister, Ismene (Ke’Ashma Simpkins), tries to block out the noise of the gun shots and bombings while Antigone desires to find her brother, Polyneices (Jeremy Bazata) who is fighting against the war and deemed a traitor. But when she does, she learns she needs to bury him as he bleeds dead in the street. In order to give him a proper burial and protect his honor, she  must break the law under the new leadership of her uncle, Creon (Gabriel Patrascu).

Based “anytime and anywhere that war is raging,” we follow the troupe of five through the heartbreak and anger they are feeling. With the assistance of the narrator and ensemble member, Meredith Reed, we are taken to Ismene’s home where she tries to console the young and ambitious Antigone, the palace where Creon reigns and a dungeon where one sits awaiting their fate after doing what’s best for their family, but in turn, also becomes a traitor.

Performances by Barrientos, Simpkins, Bazata, Patrascu and Reed are beyond phenomenal. For students just beginning to make their mark in the world of theatre and entertainment, they certainly act as though they have been on Broadway for years all with the help and leadership of director Steven Lantz-Gefroh.

Originally written by Melissa Cooper, the local performances are raw and full of emotion. Despite a play filled with destruction and devastation, there’s a meaning beneath it all like the rubble in the show’s setting.

We get to know each character. Reed’s narrator is strong with storytelling that helps the audience understand where we are. Patrascu’s Creon is the perfect epidemy of a politician with the voice and look to match. We feel Simpkins’ Ismene, who has a broken heart, and cries real tears, with so much love that she just wants to fix and protect everyone who is left in her life. Bazata’s Polyneices says not one word, but his body language and stature on stage make him a focal point in the production. And of course, Barrientos’ Antigone, the titular character, whose rebellious personality, and defiance show us that there is nothing over family and that often-subdued women will do whatever it takes to protect their honor.

Antigone Now is the perfect specimen of tragedy. The modern spin on it is relatable to most in the crowd and it is a beautifully crafted, thought-provoking presentation of a long-told tale that still holds true today.

You won’t want to miss this one. 

The Theatres at Suffolk County Community College present Antigone Now in Theatre 119, Islip Arts Building Suffolk County Community College, 533 College Road, Selden on Oct. 12, 13, 14 at 7:30 p.m. and Oct. 15 at 2 p.m. *Mature Content.  General admission is $15, veterans and students 16 years of age or younger $10. SCCC students with current ID are offered one free ticket. To order, please call the box office at 631-451-4163.

Long-time communications professional to serve out remainder of Mayor Sheprow's unexpired trustee term

Village clerk Barbara Sakovich, right, swears newly-appointed trustee Drew Biondo into office on Tuesday, July 4. Photo by Julianne Mosher

In the first official action of the new administration, Mayor Lauren Sheprow appointed communications professional Drew Biondo to serve as village trustee.

Sheprow was elected trustee last year for a two-year term ending June 2024. Biondo will serve out the remainder of Sheprow’s unexpired term. This appointment is not subject to board approval under New York Village Law.

Biondo has served as director of communications at Suffolk County Community College since 2013. He is a former Long Island Power Authority trustee, serving in that role from 2018-23. He also worked as director of communications and press secretary for former New York State Sen. Ken LaValle (R-Port Jefferson).

“I’ve known and worked with Drew in a variety of capacities for more than 20 years,” Sheprow said in a press release July 3. “I know him to be very strategic and purposeful in his approach. His time spent on the LIPA board, in higher education, as well as in Senator LaValle’s [office] has prepared him well to be able to serve the residents of Port Jefferson as a trustee.”

In an exclusive interview, Biondo shared that he visited Village Hall on Monday, where he introduced himself to village staff. He expressed confidence in the administration in place.

“Just in my brief time at Village Hall this morning, I got to meet a few of the career professionals,” he said. “I think we’re in really good hands.”

In the leadup to accepting the appointment, Biondo said he and Sheprow began discussing “government processes,” which he noted will be a central policy focus in the coming term.

“As much as people complain that the government is slow and bureaucratic, those processes are a check and balance to make sure that everything is done properly, that i’s are dotted and t’s are crossed,” he said.

The newly appointed trustee indicated development and redevelopment projects are at the “top of mind for a lot of village residents.” He suggested parking and taxes would also represent priority areas for the reconfigured village board.

“Those are all things that I think all of the trustees will focus on,” he said.

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency recently announced new regulations targeting existing power plants [See story, “Powering down? New climate regulations may impact local power plants,” May 20, TBR News Media website]. 

With unsettled questions surrounding the tax-generating Port Jefferson Power Station, Biondo said he would aim to leverage his experience on the LIPA board to advance the cause of village residents.

“Yes, I will be using my five years of experience serving on the board of LIPA to help the village,” he said.

Speaking to his new constituency, Biondo said, “It’s not lost on me that I’m unelected.” Despite this, he stressed the need for the village to look ahead.

“There’s a time for politics, and there’s a time for governing,” he said. “Now is the time to govern.”

“Thank you to Mayor Sheprow,” he added. “I look forward to serving the village and its residents.”