From the Desk of Executive Director, Dolores Swirin-Yao

February 2024

We recently hosted a group of school superintendents, principals, guidance counselors, curriculum leaders, school board members and other friends who work with students from Westchester, Putnam County and the Bronx.  The purpose of the visit was to let our partners who work with secondary school students know about the many opportunities that SUNY Westchester Community College offers for ALL students in our area, whether they are Ivy League-bound students, or students interested in getting credentials for entering the workforce, or any other savvy student who wishes to take advantage of an education that is excellent, local and extremely affordable. 

Guests had a chance to chat over breakfast with representatives from our Extension Centers in Yonkers, Mount Vernon, Peekskill and Ossining, each offering its own special programs at convenient locations for our students.  WCC Foundation Board Member Susan Elion Wollin, who is the former president of the Board of Education of Bedford Central School District and the Westchester Putnam School Boards Association, among other community leadership positions, greeted our guests. 

Our program started with remarks from SUNY WCC’s President Belinda Miles and Provost Vanessa Morest.  We saw a terrific new video about the College, posted below, that had been produced for the event by our own WCC alumnus Dave Venturini

WCC Foundation Board Member Dr. Ray Sanchez, who is Superintendent of the Tarrytown Schools, moderated a panel consisting of Dr. Morest; LaTasha Hamlett-Carver, Assistant Dean of Workforce Development; Professor Ricky Werner who works with our High School Partnership program; Dr. Nicole Joseph, Director, Ossining Extension Center; and Lotus Taylor, our Student Government Association President and Honors College student.  Each had a chance to share thoughts about what SUNY WCC offers and why WCC is such a special place.  Lotus stole the show, telling the group that she will be happy to come to their districts to talk about the extraordinary experience she has had at SUNY WCC. 

The formal part of the program ended with a visit to the superb new Robert R. Wiener Cybersecurity Center on campus, which is a US Department of Homeland Security-designated Center of Excellence.  Our Ambassadors offered campus tours of the beautiful, 218-acre campus to those who were visiting us for the first time. 

The most satisfying part of the event was hearing from participants as they were leaving who were telling us how impressed they were with what they heard and that they had no idea that SUNY WCC had so much to offer.  On her way out, one of our guests, picking up admissions materials for her team, enthusiastically told us, “I’m all in!”.

It was very exciting to see how our visitors were happily surprised with the College, and we hope to have even more opportunities to spread the word about SUNY WCC in the community in the coming year. 

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