Celebration of Service to Queensborough (2019)


– So good evening, and welcome. I’m Dr. Timothy Lynch, and
I am the interim president of Queensborough Community College, and I’ll be serving as
your emcee this evening. And I wanna formally welcome you to our annual celebration of service. It’s my pleasure and honor to
preside at this special event. This is truly one of the highlights of our annual event calendar. And this year’s celebration
is especially significant, as it commemorates not only those who have been here for 20-plus years, but also because it marks 60 years of continuous service
for the college itself. Those being recognized tonight, therefore, have been here for a third, a half, or even more of the college’s
institutional history. But tonight, we’re here to
pay tribute to our honorees. Many have spent the
better part of their lives committed to making a
difference in the lives of the students who
come to our institution. So whether you work with our students in the classroom,
interact with our students as they register for classes
and seek financial aid, work behind the scenes processing bills, filing paperwork, keeping official records or maintaining a safe, clean, and exceptionally beautiful
campus, tonight is about you. And you are to be commended
for ensuring that our students receive a transformational
academic experience, a personalized service across the board. Your dedication goes a long way towards helping our students create a better life for
themselves and for others. Thank you for being a part of the Queensborough
Community College family. We’ll now commence with the
individual award presentations. (audience applauding) We’ll begin with those individuals who have 20 years of
service to the institution. Our first honoree, for the
Department of Pre-College, Continuing Education and
Workforce Development, here’s Dr. Diana Berkowitz. (audience applauding)
(audience cheering) (Tim speaking faintly) The podium is yours,
we’ll take a photo after. – And I apologize in advance
for having to speak very fast, I only have one minute. (laughing) So the first time I came to this campus was for my first interview for CLIP Coordinator 20
and a half years ago. It was in late April, I thought, “This campus is very pleasant, “I could see myself
working on such a campus.” Then I came for my second interview in May and I thought, “This
campus is really lovely, “I would really like to work here.” Fortunately, I also felt
a collegial connection with the people on my search committee, among them was Florence
Tse, who is here somewhere, my good buddy, now, and it was almost uncanny how well I felt I clicked with them all. I knew this was a place
I would like to work at, and most fortunately,
I was offered the job. In my 20 years here, I have
had several different deans and VPs to report to. First in Academic Affairs,
and then in Continuing Ed. I would like to make special mention of Vice President Ameridas Denise Ward, who retired several months ago. I feel I learned so much
under her mentorship, and I will always be grateful for having had her in
my professional life. Following her retirement,
CLIP was moved back into Academic Affairs along
with other pre-college programs. And I just want to express my appreciation to Assistant Dean Micheal Pullin for his enthusiastic support
and help these past few months. I also want to thank my wonderful staff in CLIP and CUNY Start,
my superb instructors, most efficient college assistants and other exceedingly
helpful support staff. In particular, I’d like to thank both Bonnie Flaherty and Monica Gonzalez. Bonnie has gone from being a CUNY Start reading writing teacher to
Assistant Director of CUNY Start to Director of CUNY Start
in a relatively short time. And she made my job so easy, because she required so
little supervision as she, I’m sorry, as she worked
her way up to director. Monica went from being a CLIP teacher to CLIP Instructor to
Assistant Director of CLIP, a position in which she could
take her strong administrative skills which she has already
exhibited as an instructor, and took charge of matters that I did not have to attend to anymore, so I could focus on other
professional development matters. I also want to mention that
Monica was the first teacher I hired when I started CLIP
on this campus 20 years ago, but because the CLIP teacher
line does not fit neatly into any of the categories for the 20 years of service celebration, she cannot be recognized
officially, up here tonight. So just want to also congratulate her on her 20 years of service.
(audience applauding) Thank you.
(audience applauding) (speaking faintly) – We’re gonna take one
using this as a background. – [Cameraman] Smile, one two three! Can you move in just a little more? There you go, thank you. (camera clicking)
Perfect, thank you. (speaking faintly) – Thank you Dr. Berkowitz.
(audience applauding) I was remiss in not
acknowledging my colleague, Dr. Pecorino, who’s
assisting us this evening. He’s himself, has been here for 48 years. (audience applauding) So he’s been on this campus as long as I’ve been on this planet. (audience laughing) Our next honoree from
the Department of English is Margaret Chin Quee. (audience applauding)
(audience cheering) – Hello everyone. – [Audience Member] Hey Marge! – Hi. I just want to say thank
you for the honorable recognition and acknowledgement of my 20-year service here at QCC. Throughout the years and even now, it has and continues to
be a pleasure to work with and serve under six
different Chairpersons. (audience laughing) From Professor Noodleman, Kernit, Warsi, Rochford, Humphries and Maloy. Along with our incredible
cast of talented, hard-working, English faculty and staff who are committed to
serving our QCC students. I’m delighted and proud, therefore, to be a part of this wonderful experience of tireless dedication and professionalism shown by our department in
helping our QCC students become effective readers and writers who can achieve their educational dreams and possibilities. Thank you everybody. (audience applauding)
(audience cheering) – You’ll find the next
20 go faster and easier. – Thank you. – [Cameraman] Last one, look over here. One, two, three. – Thank you. – Our next honoree, from the Office of Academic Affairs, is our Dean of
Institutional Effectiveness, and my good friend, Dr. Arthur Corradetti. (audience cheering)
(audience applauding) – [Audience Member] Yeah, buddy! – Thank you. With the exception of about
six months or eight months, in sponsor programs, I’ve
been in Academic Affairs the rest of the 20 years. And I owe that to Steve
Beltzer and Karen Steele, who hired me back in 1999. I’m very grateful for them for
giving me this opportunity. And since then, I’ve reported to, I think, 12 different Provosts. (audience laughing) And the number keeps climbing. But I’m very happy to have done so. I’m very grateful for the
opportunities that I’ve had to work on some very important
and significant projects that have affected the campus as a whole. I’ve been honored to do so. And I’ve been very honored
and happy to work with all of the people that
have made those projects come off successfully. Thank you. (audience applauding) (Dr. Pecorino mumbling) (camera clicking) – [Cameraman] Thank you. – Thank you. – From the Department of Social Sciences, Dr. Anita Ferdenzi. (audience applauding) – Thank you Dr. Lynch. It is truly an honor and a privilege to have worked among and
with most of you here. Working with the faculty,
the talented administrators, and support staff in our mission, which is truly from the heart, that keeps us going in working towards helping our wonderful students realize their goals and dreams. Thank you very much. (audience applauding) (camera clicking) – Our next honoree comes from the Department of Health,
Physical Education and Dance, Ms. Janis Gruber. (audience cheering)
(audience applauding) (audience laughing) – OK, thank you President Lynch. Good evening everyone. Time sure has flown by since
I started working at QCC. First, part-time in the
Financial Aid in 1996. A few years later, I became full-time and went to Human Resources. Now I’m working in the Health,
Phys Ed and Dance Department. To put time in perspective, my daughter, who’s here was nine
years old when I started, she’s now in her 30s and most importantly, made me a Grammy, yay! (audience laughing)
(audience applauding) QCC has been more than
just a place to work, I’ve made many lifelong
friendships along the way and I want to thank all
my former coworkers in HR, who supported me through the years. Especially the women I worked with in Faculty and Staff Relations, Liza Larios, Sangeeta Noel, Angela Gmuca, I never say your name right, sorry. (audience laughing) Elaine Kaplan, Lois Florman,
I saw her over here, yep, just to name a few. And thank you to Dr.
Salis, Cathy Murawski, and all the people I work
with in the HPED Department for making me feel so welcome. Lastly, thank you to my family. Congratulations to all the other lifers, and see how time flies? I have to go now. (audience laughing)
(audience applauding) – I got to tell you, you look happier in Health, Phys Ed and Dance.
– I am. (camera clicking)
(mumbling) – Thank you. – Our next honoree is from the
mail room, Mr. Brian Harper. (audience cheering)
(audience applauding) – Thank you, President Lynch. Now you know my real age. (audience laughing) I turned 20 today, so let’s see if I can reflect
on 20 years in one minute. First, I must say thanks
to our Grand Creator, Jehovah God, who I rely
on for timely patience, endurance and everything else in between that help me to complete
these 20 years of service. Next, I would like to thank
my lovely wife, Paula, who stood with me for those 20 years. With the unmatched efforts
of well-prepared daily meals, knowing that good health
is needed to endure, I thank you for being the
glue and the better half of our matrimonial team. Some years ago, about 20
years ago, we should say, after nine years of service there, I left the King. That is, Kingsborough Community College, to serve the Queen,
Queensborough Community College. (audience laughing) Stationed in one of the many
service departments on campus, known as the mail room, I faced many challenges over the years. But the goal to make QCC
the number one mail room in CUNY, I kept focus
with one thought in mind, that thought was, “Ask not
what QCC can do for me, “but rather what I can do
for my new QCC family.” (audience laughing)
(audience applauding) Thank you. That was my focus 20 years ago and still is, at present. It was never a one-man-show so to speak, I had loyal help. And so with much
appreciation and gratitude, I would like to say a few thank yous. Thanks to the leadership of
Vice President Stephen Di Dio and our Print Shop Coordinator
Mr. Richard D’Amato for the continued support in
making sure that all goes well with the mail room operation. A respectful thanks to the
Vice President William Faulkner and Mr. David Wasserman,
Executive Director of Finance, for their quiet,
behind-the-scene problem-solving, without any public fanfare. A heartfelt thanks to
the members of my staff, Savannah, David and Shaun, who made each working day a memorable one, with their loyal attitude,
endurance and dedication. In sincere thanks to you, to all of the Purchasing, Budgeting and Accounting Department,
the loyal staff members who always made sure that
the mail room operation needs are met. Thank you for all the excellent
support you have given throughout the many years. Finally, thanks to all in the
QCC family here this evening, under the caring leadership
of our interim President, Dr. Timothy Lynch, for
acknowledging and honoring those who have displayed steadfast loyalty throughout the many years,
caring and enduring, simply because we love what we do. Now please allow me to
leave a few work-related tips with you, continue
to work hard for a cause, and not just for an applause. Live life to express
and not just to impress. Don’t strive to make
your presence noticed, just keep doing good as you should, and your absence will be felt throughout the entire QCC neighborhood. Again, thank you all and
may all of us continue striving to be the best we can be at QCC. Thank you. (audience applauding) (camera clicking) (audience applauding) – Our next honoree from the Department of Mathematics
and Computer Sciences, is Elizabeth Nercessian. (audience applauding) – Thank you, President Lynch. It’s been a pleasure and an honor to serve the QCC community for 20 years. And a very special thank
you to the Math Department for their support and help in the continuous growth of the Math Learning Center. I started in 1999 as the Director of the Math Learning Center and we have grown to a larger extent, thanks to
the support of the community and the department and the administration. Thank you. (audience applauding) – Stick around a while longer, yeah? Another 20, at least. (camera clicking) Here you are, wait, wait. – Like a rose between two thorns. For the Department of
Information Technology, Oral Rattigan. (audience cheering)
(audience applauding) – Testing. (laughs) Thank you. I finally got a chance
to wear my blue suit. (audience laughing) – [Audience Member] It looks great on you. – This suit is for Dr. Corradetti, and this hat is for David Wasserman. (audience laughing) You know for 20 years, I was
trying to out-dress them. With all seriousness, I
think I’m in full agreement with all the honorees when I say, where did 20 years go? For me personally, I had two beautiful, and smart and healthy kids, Ester Rattigan and Neil Meyer Rattigan,
he came to visit me today. And about 17 years ago,
I brought Neil, my son, in a stroller, tiny fella, to show him off to my colleagues in I.T. And now Neil Meyer is in
college and he’s taller than me, (audience laughing) a lot taller than me. So the time goes by fast. I got a call from Ronni and she says, I’m gonna be honored
for 20 years of service in October 17th, tonight. But truth be told, I should be the one giving the honors, because
without these people, I wouldn’t be here 100% certain on that. Definitely Mary Anne Meyer
for the Tech Prep Program, John McGloin, he sent me an
email, he couldn’t make it, personal reasons, he was the Director for Information
Technology 20 years ago. And it was told to me
that the last thing he did was hire me before he left. Now, I’d like to think that
was a good thing. (laughs) But it depends on how
you look at it, right? Emil Parrinello, Emil, 20 years ago, put me under his wings and because of that I really had nothing to fear. Also Ed McNally, he was
the Senior Technician for the business department and my last semester at
QCC, I interned with him and he really taught me
everything that he knew. Last but not least, Vivian Kaufman, she knows how special she is to me. She gave me a warm call
to congratulate me. Without Vivian, I wouldn’t have met Emil and I wouldn’t have met Ed McNally, so she was a catalyst of it all. Another truth be told, I
wouldn’t have lasted 20 years if it wasn’t for folks
like Ralph Romanelli. He was my supervisor 20 years ago and Ralph learned the hard
way that I was a slow learner. So Ralph, thank you for your
patience, appreciate that. (audience laughing) I should have expected that. Bryan Farr, great leadership
skills 20 years ago. And Quincin Gonjon, my current supervisor, I couldn’t have asked
for a better supervisor. And another, final truth be told is that, really everyone here at QCC had some hand in me lasting 20 years. So I thank QCC, I thank you all. I’d like to reserve
some time just to thank some special friendships that
I’ve had for 20 years like Elizabeth Gordon, thank you
for the wonderful conversations about nature and life. Kevin Nwaifejokwu, great friend. Frank Fanelli, a wonderful
person to be with. Met some great people in
the B and G Department, awesome people there. In the Public Safety Department, Johnson, I don’t know if he’s here. And the Adjunct Service Department. And last but not least, thank
you for my son for showing up. I think without him, I don’t think I probably would be here. So thank you all. (audience applauding) (camera clicking) – [Philip] Enjoy the next 20. – [Oral] I’m gonna try to
get out of here in 10 years. – For Department of
English, Dr. Linda Reesman. – [Audience Member] Yay, Linda! (audience applauding) – Thank you, all. I’m just very honored to be here and appreciate, thank you President Lynch, for bringing us all together tonight and for this celebration. And making us really think
back about our journeys in terms of how we got here. There’s so many thoughts
and so many experiences that we’ve all had. My journey began, actually,
just as an adjunct. Before I was here for 20 years,
I was here for six years. And I have to thank that moment in my life when I was a student, a doctoral student, at St. John’s, because
that’s where I met the people that helped me get here. And that person, Jo Pantaleo, who’s our Diversity Officer here tonight, so thank you, Jo. And for the privilege of working with probably one of the longest
chairs in our history at Queensborough, Sheena Gillespie, and Linda Stanley who
took me under their wing and just made my experience feeling like, oh it’s a big secret, I should pay them, they shouldn’t pay me for working because working was such a pleasure. And working with the
students all these years, I also have to thank my
mentor, David Shimkim, who’s here tonight for (audience applauding) mentoring me, not only in
the English Department, but with the Communique,
the student newspaper, we’ve had a lot of fun
experiences developing that. And I think, most of all, my experience just
working with the students and seeing the light bulbs go on, that we’re still doing
this all these years later. And can continue to do this. Queensborough is a very special place and I’m so proud to be a part of it. Thank you so much. (audience applauding) (camera clicking) – So you made the halfway point. – Thank you (laughs) I
hope I make the other half. – Dr. Pecorino said,
“You’ve made it halfway.” So 20 more. From the Department of Accounts
Payable, Sukina Saunders. – [Audience Member] Yay, Sukina! (audience applauding)
(audience cheering) – Good evening, everyone. First, I want to say thank you to my God for this present moment. Thank you to my lovely daughter,
Monet, the impressionist. (audience laughing) Absolutely, yes. Thank you to my new office, Accountant and Related Entities, my four months in the
office have been great. Prior to relocating, I was in
one of the toughest offices known to the college community, known as the Bursar’s Office. (audience laughing) I did my full 20 years of
service in that office. I worked with seven sets of bosses, equaling 18 in total. And I survived. (audience laughing) I’m grateful for the
experience and milestone. Thank you to QCC’s Security Team, I truly appreciate their vigorous effort when I asked for their assistance locating my disabled
transportation, Access-A-Ride, also known as Stress-A-Ride. I salute you all. Thank you to the B and G department for maintaining the areas
throughout the college community because sometimes I’m messy, so thank you. Lastly, thank you to the
entire college community for your support in all
areas of customer service. (audience applauding) – May they serve you
well for the next one. – Thank you. – Congratulations. – Thank you. – Congratulations. (audience applauding) From the Department of
Biological Sciences and Geology, Dr. Roland Scal. (audience applauding) – President Lynch, I want
to thank you so much. Hello, thank you for having me here. It’s just been a pleasure, 20 years, every day has been fun. And I appreciate all my
wonderful colleagues. I just don’t know how to say
thanks to just one person, ’cause all of you make
this place so wonderful. And I hope to maybe get another
10 years before retiring but I’m amazed to hear some
people have done 50 years and they’re thinking of staying longer. Wow, you’ve got some stamina, thank you. And I’m glad to hear that
everyone’s so happy here. It’s just wonderful, all
the inductees were so great. (audience applauding) (camera clicking) – Your contribution is
important to (mumbles). – Thank you, Phil. Thank you, President Lynch. See you soon. – So now I move to our
honorees who have served for 20 years as adjuncts. And our first honoree, from
the Department of English, is Georganne Albanese. (audience cheering)
(audience applauding) (audience murmuring) – It is indeed an honor
and a pleasure to be here, among so many auspicious
friends and colleagues. And I thank you from
the bottom of my heart. It was wonderful working
here, and it always has been. I’m finished (laughs) goodnight
all, enjoy your dinner. (audience applauding) (murmuring) – [Cameraman] And one, two, three. Look here please, thank you. – Thank you. – Thank you. For the Department of Health,
Physical Education and Dance, Dr. Joyce Boffert. (audience applauding) – Good evening, everybody. Thank you for the recognition. In 20 years, I was thinking about, what memories I have from Queensborough and I’d like to start
by just saying that my 20 years as an adjunct was
really, after the fact. Queensborough is my Alma Mater, I started my college education here. And in all honesty, out of all
the schooling that I’ve had, my fondest memories and my
most positive experiences, really still remain at Queensborough. I, though, as an adjunct,
have looked at my experiences at Queensborough as an
inspiration and innovation. Personally, I have done several things in my 20 years here. I changed the CUNY
Bylaws, single-handedly. I did it in the realm of pay equality, and so you can all blame me for that. I also was part of the advisory board led by Alex Tarasko, where we developed and
were able to get the two-year degree massage program
instituted at the college. And finally, before I became an adjunct, I taught Continuing Ed for
many years at this school. I appreciate what I have been
able to do for Queensborough and hope to continue to do so. Thank you. (audience applauding) (murmuring) Thank you. (camera clicking) Thank you. – For the Department of
Mathematics and Computer Sciences, Mr. Eddie Cantos. (audience applauding) – Good evening, Mr. President. Thank you for this important recognition. I have to say thank you
to Mona, where’s Mona? Thank you Mona, thank you Dr. Appleman who gave me the opportunity in 1993. And also, Dr. Bertorelli, and now Maria Mercedes, our boss. It’s very important, I am
very proud to work here, like you in Queensborough
Community College. It’s important family, especially the people in the office, the secretaries are very good, support me all the time
when I request something. Thank you. The people who clean the
classroom, also support me, when I request something. The security, when I cannot open the door, I call there and they
support me all the time. So thank you everybody. And also thank you to my beautiful wife who support me all the time, where I am, she is there with me, thank you. (audience applauding) – Your contributions are appreciated. (camera clicking) – Thank you. – For Department of
Business, Debra Glinert. (audience applauding) – Thank you for acknowledging
my 20 years here, at Queensborough. It’s been an enriching
and rewarding experience. I’d like to particularly thank the people in the Business Department, particularly Chairperson Kathleen Villani and also Karen Grant and Phyllis Pace, who have been my supervisors as well as Marilyn Katz. This has been a fantastic
experience for me. I have been teaching
Computer Software Technology to the students and it
gives me such pleasure to know that I’m making a
difference in their lives. And that it’s a skill that
they can take directly to the workplace. So thank you very much, it’s been great. (audience applauding) (murmuring) – It’s great having you (mumbles). – [Cameraman] This one
over here, one, two, three. One more. (camera clicking) Thank you. – For the Department of
Mathematics and Computer Sciences, Robert Goldsman. (audience applauding) – Thank you, President Lynch. It’s been such a pleasure
teaching here at Queensborough. From my professional and
hardworking colleagues, but not only that, for the clerical staff, the B and G, Public Safety, everybody who makes the
college run so smoothly. It’s also great to have such diversity here at Queensborough,
really appreciate that. The hardworking immigrants who come here to make a better life for themselves. I’d like to particularly respect them. With teaching math, you try
to make things interesting for the students and
sometimes it’s difficult. So I try to mix some humor in, so today, just today,
I was doing formulas. And it was a whole page full of formulas and so I said to my students, “You know, there’s more
formulas here than you’d find “in a maternity ward.” (audience laughing) And so one of the students said, “Mr. Goldsman, you should do a stand-up.” So I said, “No, I prefer to sit down.” (audience laughing) Anyways, those are the kind of jokes. I know, Rate My Professor,
if anybody’s ever gone to that website, one of the students said, “Mr. Goldsman’s a good math teacher, “but he needs new jokes.” (audience laughing) Maybe that’s true, I don’t know. Anyway, I want to give a shout
out to my second favorite administrative assistant
here at Queensborough, Carol Shilling. (audience applauding) Always efficient, smiling
and willing to help, and very patient. Sometimes I make mistakes. Of course she’s my second
favorite administrative assistant. My first actually, comes from
the Chemistry Department, my wife, Wendy. (audience applauding) Now, she’s my favorite at
home and at Queensborough. For years, I’ve told my students, “You know, I love eating at Wendy’s, “I have breakfast, lunch, dinner, snacks “sometimes seven days a week.” And the kids start freaking
out saying, “What?” (audience laughing) Until one of them will finally say, “Mr. Goldsman, is Wendy your wife?” I said, “Very good, yes, exactly.” (audience laughing) So I want to thank my
wife, Wendy, as well, making me feel like an honorary member of the Chemistry Department as well as the Math and Computer Science. Thank you. (audience applauding) – Good man, good man, keep that up. – A Seinfeld wanna-be. (camera clicking) – All right, fantastic, thank you. For the Department of
Engineering Technology, Michael Kozma. (audience applauding) (audience murmuring) – Good evening, all. Believe it or not, I actually first time came to Queensborough 1964, as a student. – [Audience Member] Yay! (audience cheering) – In the Electrical Technology Department. That was an interesting
year because it turns out, about that time there
were a lot of different changes coming along in
the electronics industry. And I was very happy to
be some a part of that. Vacuum tubes, for example,
were being replaced by transistors. New devices like, light-emitting diodes, field-effect transistors
were coming into age and joining all of the
other electronic components. The U.S. was involved in the Space Race. And I was really, really
excited to be a part of that and so much so I decided
I would have to go on further for my education,
well beyond Queensborough for the Associate Degree. I went to a four-year school, at night, while I was working in the
daytime and got a Bachelor’s. Continued along to my Master’s Degree, and I always felt like
I had this affection for Queensborough because I really thought they had given me a great start back here. And I admired the faculty
and the great education that I had gotten because quite honestly, in high school, I don’t
think I was the best student. So anyway, I sent a
resume into Queensborough after I got my Master’s in 1977. At that time Joe Idalla was
the department chairman of E.T. You all remember Joe, maybe? It’s Labor Day Weekend,
or right before Labor Day, I’m coming home from soccer camp, from a soccer tournament in Virginia, it’s 9:30 Sunday night. It’s raining and the phone is ringing. I answer the phone and sure
enough, it’s Joe Idalla. He says, “Kozma, I have
your crummy resume here, “do you still want to
teach at Queensborough?” If you know Joe, you
know exactly what I mean. I said, “Yeah, sure, I
wouldn’t mind teaching “at Queensborough, why, whattaya got?” “Well I got Electronics 1,
if you wanna teach that, “you feel comfortable, you could come in “and teach Electronics 1 if
you feel like you’re able.” I said, “Yeah, I wouldn’t
mind teaching Electronics 1, “where does it start?” “Tomorrow at six o’clock, be here at 5:30, “I’ll give you the books.” (audience laughing) Honest to God, true story. So I did, I’ve been here since. And I can honestly say I’m very grateful to Queensborough for the opportunity to be part of the instructional staff. I’m really thankful and
really honored to be here for 20 years. Oh, and by the way, I met my
wife here in Queensborough. She’s over there, I met her in ’64, and we’ve been married 51 years. Thank you very much. (audience applauding)
(audience cheering) (murmuring) Oh, thank you. Food! (audience laughing) – [Audience Member] I
wouldn’t count on that! – From the Department of
Chemistry, Dr. George Lyons. (audience applauding) – As a small kid, I remember them building the Throgs Neck Bridge, and I
thought that was really cool. And then I remember as a small kid, driving by here and seeing
the Deepdale Country Club. And I said, as a small kid, “I don’t know why, but I
wanna go here and play golf.” One day they called me up,
they asked me to teach. Gave me an interview and taught, I was kind of disappointed when
the golf course wasn’t here. I don’t know what happened. (audience laughing) But anyhow, for the most part, I’ve been kinda happy here. (audience laughing) – [Audience Member] That’s
a ringing recommendation. – Kinda lost something, but anyhow, I wanna thank all of you for the time I’ve been here. This is a cordial, a
great academic environment for the community here. It’s always been a great place to work. I’ve met a lot of great people here. I’ve had opportunity to
teach tomorrow’s generation. Sometimes I think I’m the guiding light of tomorrow’s generation. I’ve had some very great students, some not so great students. I’ve had people that
seemed like they’re gonna be something and make
something of their life. I’ve had people that aren’t. But that’s life. C’est la vie. So if anyone knows me, I’m the one who never has
much of anything to say. I’m the quiet one. That’s a joke. Like a fly on the wall, I’ve been a member of the QC community since 1992. The Chemistry Department
for which I teach, has been like a family to me. So you probably, it’s hard
to read my handwriting. (audience laughing) So you probably never
heard of these people. But I started working
for Beatrice Arnowich and then Peter Wong, I
love all these people. And then Paris Svoronos, who told me that he was gonna fire me if I didn’t learn how to spell his name. (audience laughing) And then for Karimi,
Sasan, and I’m still here, and thank you very much. (audience applauding) (murmuring) (camera clicking) – For the Department of Health, pardon me, for the Department of Health,
Physical Education and Dance, June Mapp. (audience applauding) – Good evening. This is the room I came
to back in 1979 of fall, and this room had chalkboards. ‘Cause back then they
didn’t have computers to put in the classes. And I stood in the middle
of the room and cried. Because I was new here from Barbados, I didn’t understand the system. I didn’t know what a GPA was. And I couldn’t figure
out how to get a class because everything was closed. One professor stopped and said, “I’m gonna help you.” And he taught me how to choose my classes. Thank God for computers. So I came here back in 1979 and discovered the RFK Hall where
there is a dance studio. And there I met a wonderful
teacher by the name of Muriel Mannings, may she rest in peace. And she introduced me to modern dance much to the regret of my parents. Because I became a dancer, not the nurse they were looking for. And not the fashion designer
my father was looking for. Eventually, I went on to other college and I was asked to come back and do a dance workshop in Afro-Dance. And about two months later, I got a call from Ellen Feldman who was in charge of the department. She asked, “Would you like
to teach an Afro-Caribbean “dance class?” I said, “OK, I think I can handle that.” And I’ve never left. So to sum it all up, I taught in the Board of Ed for 25 years. One night at a school
York Academy of Dance, I heard somebody scream, “Professor Mapp.” And I’m looking around and
there’s this lady who says, “You’re my friend’s teacher.” Now, I didn’t teach her,
I taught her best friend. She says, “I’m gonna tell my best friend “you’re here.” So open school night, I heard
my name screamed out again, “Professor Mapp!” I’m like looking around. This is the fifth floor of a building with three different schools in it. This lady’s child was going to school on the first floor. She climbed five flights
of stairs to tell me that she is now teaching
kids what I taught her. That night I was so flabbergasted would be
the best word to put it. Because it just dawned on me that what I have been doing
here all these years is teaching the generation that’s to come and those up. So what we do is very important. And all I have left to say is thank God and thank my mother who is 84 years old and wanted to be here tonight. But we could only bring one person, so I brought my brother
who has always been the support behind me. So I’d like to thank my
family and thank the family at Queensborough. Thank you so very much. (audience applauding) (murmuring) – [Cameraman] OK guys, one, two, three. (camera clicking) – Thank you. – From the Department of
English, Joan Moretti. (audience applauding) – [Audience Member] Yay Joanie! – I would like to thank Dr. Timothy Lynch and the Faculty Executive Committee for their recognition of
my 20 years of service. None of this would have been possible without the encouragement and support of Dr. Sheena Gillespie, former Chairperson of
the English Department. She saw potential I didn’t even know I had and encouraged me to join
the English Department 20 years ago. I must also acknowledge
two former faculty members of the English Department, Dr. Helene O’Connor,
who is no longer with us and Dr. Allen Lanner, who is here tonight. Their friendship and
inspiration and encouragement have guided me throughout
my teaching career. 20 years ago, the names on the cubicles read like Gilman, Nolan,
Krozer, Stanley, O’Connor, Chankin, Levy, Pipolo. They’re no longer here. Today the names are different. But what hasn’t changed is
the spirit and integrity of the English Department. And under the steady hand
of Dr. Jennifer Maloy, the faculty will be able to navigate the academic climate change that the college is experiencing. I would be remiss if I did not acknowledge the secretarial staff, Rosita and Cheryl, whose steady hands and infinite patience keep the department functioning smoothly. And Holly McLean, our wonderful assistant. Finally, I would like to say that myself and fellow adjuncts may be considered part-time
with regards to our physical schedule but I can assure you, our commitment to our students and our profession is always full-time. Thank you for this honor. (audience applauding) – Thank you for your contributions. You enrich the department (mumbles) – Thank you. Oh, sorry. – No worries. So our next honoree is a
bit of a back story here, you’ll have to indulge me. When I started working here
two and a half years ago, I was going through the
directory looking for some contact information. And in the Department of
Math and Computer Sciences, I see this name and I had a flashback, I said, it can’t be, no
please, don’t let it be. (laughing) It was my high school math
teacher and basketball coach. And I said, “This can’t be the same guy.” But he was teaching at that time. And I went over to the hallway
outside of the classroom, and I hear the same, (audience laughing) “So you think you can just
show up without studying “and pass my course.” And I said, “Oh good Lord,
I’m having flashbacks now.” So I text all of my friends
from the basketball team, 25 years ago and I say, “You’re
not gonna believe this.” I said, “Vinnie Scotti
is now working for me.” (audience laughing) I said, “What should I do?” (audience laughing) And I’m expecting,
“Have him run ten laps.” “Have him run 20 laps.”
(audience laughing) “Have him run 30 laps.” Because that’s what he did to us. But what I got was, “Tell him, thank you.” “Tell him, I love him.” (audience laughing) And we do. So Vinnie, thank you. (audience applauding) Even though he showed up to my office, with my high school
yearbook to embarrass me in front of Olga and Debra and Janice, with my graduation pictures,
but anyway. (laughs) (audience applauding) – I wasn’t expecting that. (audience laughing) There are too many people
that I really have to thank, especially from my own department, and if I started naming people
I’d probably forget someone and insult them, so I
just want them to know, they’re deep in my heart. I thought I’d bring some of
the things that I look at and pretend I really understand. This is something I
picked up in a Curio shop. It says, “Teaching isn’t about the income, “it’s about the outcome.” You know, most of us being teachers, you were called in the classroom, and you don’t get this great feeling that we’re supposed to get. Your students aren’t gonna understand what you’ve done for them
until 20 years later. (audience laughing)
(audience applauding) However, I do have to say this, I have been blessed with
various times that I’ve met some of my former students, many of them are doctors,
lawyers, priests, college presidents and I am so proud that they, despite my interference,
have become such wonderful people in society. My wife shares my passion. She buys me t-shirts. This one’s my favorite. Here’s what it says, “I’m not crazy because I teach, “I’m crazy because I like it.” – [Audience Member] Oh I like that. (audience applauding)
(audience laughing) I am indebted to Queensborough, oh, by the way, I always
spell Queensborough- – [Audience Member] Oh, no you don’t. – Without the ‘ugh.’ (audience laughing) No, I am so grateful because I am able to continue to do what I love
to do more than anything. Thank you very much. (audience applauding) – Good outcome. – Thank you. Oh, is this for me? – [Cameraman] If I can
have your attention please? One, two, three, one more. – Thank you very much. Thanks, Tim. – For the Department of
English, Karen Simmons. (audience applauding) – Good evening everyone. Thank you Dr. Lynch,
for a minute (mumbles) (laughs) I got it right? I’ve gotten a little nervous now. But thank you very much for this honor. I’ve had the privilege of
working in the English Department with some amazing people, who are not only my
colleagues, but my friends. I’ve worked here a long
time, 20 years as an adjunct, but I was part of the
adjuncts that came at night. I worked in the Department of Education as a Special Ed teacher. And I’d leave my students to come here. And there was an always warm feeling that when I walked on this campus that I knew what I needed to do. Even though I had a long day, I would get another kind of energy because I knew I was going
to work with people that really wanted to learn, sometimes. (audience laughing) But what the greatest thing was, was that I could take what I learned here and the experiences and
take it to the students in the Department of Education and tell my students, “This
is what you need to do “to get to the next step.” It has been a pleasure, a great blessing, ’cause I was a person that never thought that this would be my role. It just happened to be
an extra part-time job that someone said, “Why
don’t you try this?” A window opens and you
never realize that that will be your path for many years. (audience laughing) Many years. (audience laughing) The greatest gift as
my colleague just said, was being able to be
here with other students and I too, saw one of my
special needs students, here, as a college student. It was an elementary
school student and said, “Ms. Simmons, Ms. Simmons!” I’m like, who’s calling me? And it was this young man that said, “Ms. Simmons, I was in
Elementary School 239.” I was so proud. And the greatest gift that we all have is that we serve these
students that do not realize what’s ahead, but we’re
there to support them. So I thank my department,
my staff members, my secretarial staff that makes me laugh and keeps me on point and
gives me the encouragement for us to keep going because
they keep things together. And my other colleagues
that share information and give me all kinds of
encouragement, thank you. And thank you all of you
who work for the students as support, we all are here to help them. And they give us the gift
of seeing them move on. Thank you very much. (audience applauding) – It’s good that you appreciate
the gifts you receive and don’t forget how awesome (mumbles). – [Cameraman] One, two. Thank you. – They may not realize it (mumbles). – We’re now moving to
our 30 year honorees. For the Department of
Buildings and Grounds, Susan Manel. (audience cheering)
(audience applauding) – [Audience Member] Yay, Susan! (audience applauding) – Hello. – [Audience Member] Hi. – I’ll keep this short and sweet, OK? I spent more than half my
life at Buildings and Grounds and I’m truly blessed for it. It’s been a privilege to
be part of Queensborough and I’m fortunate to
have formed a bond with my colleagues, Joseph
Cartolano, Vivi Tsarouhas and especially Clara
Taylor, it’s been great. God bless and thank you! (audience applauding) – Keep you (mumbles) to
keep this place operating. – Thank you. – [Audience Member] Congratulations Suse. – From the Department of Social Sciences, Dr. Pellegrino Manfra. (audience applauding) – President Lynch, thank you
very much for honoring me tonight, my 30th year and Dr. Culkin from the Social Science Department. It has been a great honor
and privilege to teach at Queensborough Community
College in the profession I love so much. I want to thank all of
you to make this forum a special place for me. Especially my colleagues,
thank you for your friendship. Thank you all for making my life richer with friendship and above
all, with great ideas. I view teaching as a
calling, a gift, a privilege. It was Plato, Phil, a Platonist, said over 2,000 years ago that teaching is the greatest art. He viewed art as a supreme in teaching. What is art? Is it the ideal? The beautiful? The perfect form we strive for? A perfect lecture? After 30 years, I always
try to improve my lectures, and no two lectures are the same. Thus teaching is an art in speech, art in language, art in knowledge, art in wisdom and art in elegance. That is what I value in teaching and I thank Queensborough
Community College for this opportunity. Thank you and God bless you. (audience applauding) – [Cameraman] OK guys, one, two, three. (camera clicking) – Grino’s office is next to mine, Tim. We spend a lot of time
discussing philosophy. – Thank you. – We shall now move to
our 40-year honorees. – [Audience Member] Joey. – From the Department of Social Sciences, Dr. Joe Culkin. (audience applauding) – I just wanna say something, when I got to 40, I thought
if you get one minute for 20, you should have two minutes for 40. – [Audience Member] Here you
go Joe, there’s your opening. (audience applauding)
(audience laughing) – [Phil] My boss. – [Audience Member] I know that. – Can I start now? (audience laughing) – So finally the rookies are
finished having their say. (audience laughing) It’s time for the veterans to speak up. I have nothing prepared and
I know that I better be brief because you’re all waiting to eat dinner. So I’d just like to say
there isn’t enough time in one minute to thank everybody who I should be thanking. So I want to thank
everybody who’s helped me in so many different ways along the way, in my department and across
the college community. To come in here every day for 40 years, well not every day. (audience laughing) Most days for 40 years. You’ve made it easier
and much more pleasurable and I want to thank you all. (audience applauding) – [Audience Member] Way to go, Joe! – [Cameraman] OK guys, gonna take four, one, two, three. – Thank you. – [Audience Member] 40 more? 40 more, Jeff!
(audience laughing) – [Phil] The halfway
part, that’s what I think. – 40 more years, 40 more years. From the Department of
Engineering Technology, Craig Weber. (audience applauding)
(audience cheering) – [Audience Member]
Lucky I made room, huh? – [Phil] He made it to the halfway mark. – Thank you, Phil. I’m speechless, that’s very rare for me if you ask my students, being
speechless, my goodness. I’ll keep it short. I hear things going out there. I’d just like to thank my
chairman over the years, to four of them and my present
chairman, Hamid Namdar. (audience applauding) And as I said, I’ve had
a lot of good students, I could talk about them all night. One student Sir Jacques, he’s
presently rebuilding Haiti on a George Soros grant,
millions of dollars, he’s an architect, he
(mumbles), went to City, and he’s been going on now for 25 years. Nicole Ibowa, I’d like to mention her too, another student, we went to a field trip of the Architecture Club to Yale, who about 15 years ago she
liked it so much, she applied, was accepted, got her Master’s and now she’s doing
architecture in Connecticut. These type of things make
it very, very heartening to be a teacher, it’s amazing. That’s all I can say, what else can I say? (audience laughing) Thank you all for being here and the pleasure of your company. (audience applauding) It’s most excellent. (camera clicking) – This evening’s final honoree, with 50 years of service to Queensborough. (audience cheering)
(audience applauding) From the Department of
Biological Sciences and Geology, Antoinette Peragine. (audience cheering)
(audience applauding) – I would like to thank
everyone that I’ve worked with, that I’ve met, some very lovely people. And I came here very shy
and I was asked at one point to be a Marshall at graduation, which was really scary for a shy person, but I did it. And I’ve enjoyed helping
my faculty eagerly and I’ve also enjoyed helping my students that come with problems and needs. And I just thank everyone,
it’s been a pleasure. Thank you. (audience applauding) – [Cameraman] One, two, three, one more. Thank you. – Thank you for the (murmurs). – So colleagues, at this time I would ask, again, for a round of applause
for all of our honorees for all that they’ve done. (audience cheering) (audience applauding) And I would ask that all of
those who have been honored this evening, join me for a photograph, just near the front
entrance of the building, while our staff prepares for dinner. Thank you all.

1 thought on “Celebration of Service to Queensborough (2019)

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