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June 2017 Achievements


Dr. Katherine Lynch, Associate Professor of English, Stephen Burke, Chair of English, Philosophy and Religious Studies, and Martha Rottman, Professor of English, with the support and participation of Dr. Susan Deer, Provost/Executive VP, hosted a SUNY English Symposium on June 5. About 60 participants attended the event from 17 community colleges. Jodilynn Greico, Coordinator of English Skills, led one of the breakout sessions at the event.

Lynch, Burke and Rottman also helped organize a workshop, “Making Connections with Open Educational Resources,” May 24 at the Haverstraw Center, designed for teachers from the RCC High School Program.


Dr. Cliff L. Wood, outgoing President, was honored by the Rockland County Legislature at its meeting June 20. The Legislature presented a proclamation declaring that day “Dr. Cliff Wood Day” in Rockland County.

Jeanette Geller, Chair, Cyber Security, and Dr. Kathleen Hopkins, Division Chair, STEM and Health Professions, accepted the award designating RCC as a National Center of Academic Excellence in Cyber Defense. The certificate was presented by the US Department of Homeland Security June 7 at the National Cyber Summit in Huntsville, AL.

Mara-Lee Bierman, Professor and Chair, Foreign Languages, participated as a fellow at New York University’s Faculty Resource Network summer seminar, “Cuba: Now and Next,” June 12-16. Robert Gulack, adjunct faculty, English, was also selected to take part in the NYU summer program, joining the “Teaching Shakespeare” seminar.

Tanya Drake, retired Professor of Nursing, was appointed to the Nyack Hospital Board of Trustees.


John Schlesinger, Associate Professor of Art, created an installation at the former United Bank building in Philadelphia, PA, as part of the collaborative team “Dear Volunteers” with Tra Bouscaren. The project, titled “Player to be Named Later,” remains on exhibit until July 8. Link to Exhibit

Eileen MacAvery Kane, Instructor of Art, exhibited at the annual Brotherhood Winery Art Exhibit, sponsored by the Goshen Art League, in May and June in Washingtonville, NY.

Maire Liberace, Professor of Speech/Philosophy, sang with the St. Patrick’s Cathedral Choir at three recent concerts.


Lynn Aaron, Professor, Computer Studies, and Talia Lipton, Instructor, Speech, served on a panel presentation, "Tools of Engagement Project (TOEP): Scaling-Up On Demand, Online Faculty Development," at the 2017 SUNY Conference on Instruction in Technology (CIT) in Oneonta, NY on May 31. Aaron and Lipton also made a poster presentation at the same conference, titled “Digital Devices: The Uninvited Force in 21st Century Higher Education."

Stephen Burke, Chair, English, Philosophy and Religious Studies, and Dr. Katherine Lynch, Associate Professor, English, presented at the SUNY CIT conference on June 1. Their presentation was titled “Teaching and Writing in Multiple Dimensions: The Challenges and Rewards of Creating an OER Text.”

Wendy Gordon, Chair and Instructor, Hospitality & Tourism, and Sherrill Wilson, adjunct faculty, Multicultural Studies, presented “Explore the History, Cuisine and Culture of New Orleans” on March 7 at the Mahwah Public Library in Mahwah, NJ.

Robert Gulack, adjunct faculty, English, had a comedy screenplay presented in a reading in May at Long Island University's Brooklyn campus by a group of professional actors.


Meghan Nolan, Assistant Professor, English, had a creative non-fiction piece titled “Through the Wall” published in March in Thread, an online literary publication.


The RCC Federation of Administrators chose its new Executive Board in an election held June 1:

President: Brian McGuirk
Vice-President: Debra Bouabidi
Treasurer: Mark Woodbine
Recording Secretary: Jon Jon Federic S. Chua
Corresponding Secretary: Patricia Kobes

Sonny Reyes, support staff, Academic Affairs, was elected by the 1,300 members of CSEA Unit 8350 to a four-year term as 2nd Vice President, to begin July 1. CSEA is the largest union representing those who work for the ​County of Rockland, and is New York State’s leading union. Reyes assumes chairmanship of the shop steward committee and assists the president as needed in other official duties.

Student and Alumni Achievements

Chrystal Thomas, an Early Admit and former Honors student at RCC, was selected as the student speaker at the commencement ceremony for Carnegie Mellon University on May 21. Thomas is also the first student from Carnegie Mellon to be named a Schwarzman Scholar, and will receive funding to complete a master’s degree at Tsinghua University in Beijing.

Nicholas Conroy ’13 and Christopher Conroy ’13 were both commissioned as Second Lieutenants in the U.S. Air Force on May 27. Both brothers graduated John Jay College with degrees in Forensic Psychology, and both are attending Columbia University seeking Master's Degrees in Information and Knowledge Strategy.

At the 25th Beacon Conference, held at Orange County Community College on June 2, eight RCC students gave presentations, with two of those students, Shaina Mathews and Chaya Malik, judged the Outstanding Presenters on their respective panels. Thomas Butler, PhD, Professor, Math/Science, and Robert Fuentes, Assistant Professor, English, were honored for their service and work on the Beacon Steering Committee.

Panel Presenters
Emma Colchamiro: "Yellow is the New Black" * Mentor: Liya Li, Phd, Professor, English

Chaya Malik: "Time and Space; the Beginning and the End" – Outstanding Presenter * Mentor: Saeed Safaie, Professor, Science

Shaina Mathews: "Eternal Love in Love's Fresh Case" – Outstanding Presenter * Mentor Stephen Burke, Instructor, English

Edison Tenecela: "Spectrophotometric Analyses" * Mentor: Adessa Butler, PhD, Instructor, Chemistry

Daiki Yoshioka: "Heroes or Villains: Ontological Boundary Shifting of Monstrosity and Its Fluidity" *Mentor: Rachel Golland, Assistant Professor, English

Poster Presenters
Zuzu Tadeushuk: “Silent Hollers: East Ramapo School District and How It Can Save American Education" *Mentor: Katherine Lynch, PhD, Associate Professor, English

Sherley Tung: "Clinical Case Notes: The Strange Case of Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde"
*Mentor: Rachel Golland, Assistant Professor, English

Sherley Tung and Nicole Vanderoef: "Beowulf Board Game Proposal" *Mentor: Rachel Golland, Assistant Professor, English

Twelve students were inducted into Kappa Delta Pi International Honor Society for Educators on May 23: Carly Campos, Andrea Colten, Jenna Cueto, Nicole Greco, Jacqueline Manzano, Jared Mesibov, Julianna Morales, Luis Patino, Mariana Rogers, Claudeline Turenne, Joseph Vega and Allison Wojehowski.

The following RCC student-athletes earned Academic All-American honors from the NJCAA:

Second Team (3.80-3.99 GPA):
Victoria Garcia, Bowling
Olivia Neretich, Women's Basketball
Anna Olsson
, Women's Basketball

Third Team (3.60-3.79 GPA):
Nick Armstrong, Golf
Jessica Barragan
, Volleyball
Bryan Borruso
, Baseball
Sara Hayward
, Volleyball
Steven Iaccarino
, Bowling
Ulyana Kitcmanuk, Tennis
Kevin Martinez
, Men’s Basketball
Shannon Thomas
, Volleyball