02/24/14 2:19pm
02/24/2014 2:19 PM
Nicholas Deschamps will be attending the Merchant Marine Academy next year. Courtesy photo.

Nicholas Deschamps will be attending the Merchant Marine Academy next year. Courtesy photo.

Nicholas Deschamps, company senior chief with the Riverhead Navy Junior Reserve Officer Training Corps and commander of its academic team, received an appointment to the Merchant Marine Academy in Kings Point, and will plan on attending starting next summer.  (more…)

02/06/14 12:33pm
02/06/2014 12:33 PM
SANDRA KOLBO COURTESY PHOTO | The Riverhead RJROTC's First Year Drill Team at the NJROTC unit's annual inspection and Pass-In-Review Feb. 1.

SANDRA KOLBO COURTESY PHOTO | The Riverhead RJROTC’s First Year Drill Team at the NJROTC unit’s annual inspection and Pass-In-Review Feb. 1.

The Riverhead NJROTC Drill Team took home a number of wins at the NJROTC Drill Meet Feb. 1, making them eligible for the seventh consecutive year for the upcoming Area Four Championship Meet. (more…)

01/14/13 5:02pm

BARBARAELLEN KOCH PHOTO | Cadet Anthony Mammina is expected to receive the Meritorious Achievement Award, at Friday’s NJROTC awards event.

Riverhead High School Navy Junior Reserve Officers Training Corps, known as NJROTC, will conduct its annual inspection and hold an awards ceremony this Friday morning.

And Cadet Anthony Mammina is expected to receive the Meritorious Achievement Award, which school officials described as the “highest award a cadet can receive.”

Anthony was chosen for the award after an incident in which he administered first aid to a cross country competitor who had collapsed during a race at Sunken Meadow State Park on Sept. 29.

The runner had suffered an asthma attack and became unconscious.

“Although other competitors continued to run [passed] the fallen runner, Anthony’s first instinct was to stop and help,” Cmdr. J.W. Hankins said in a statement. “After the inhaler was administered and the runner regained consciousness, Anthony and another runner who had stopped to help carried the young man for approximately half a mile to a first aid station.”

In addition to honoring Anthony, the ROTC will conduct its annual inspection, Pass-In-Review and present other cadets with awards.

Friday’s event is open to the public and starts at 9 a.m. in the high school gymnasium.

[email protected]

10/09/12 2:30pm
10/09/2012 2:30 PM

COURTESY PHOTO | The Riverhead NJROTC drill team during a meet last year.

The Riverhead school board will vote on resolutions to approve four out-of-state or overnight field trips for the 2012-13 school year at its meeting Tuesday night, according to the session’s agenda.

The first trip request is to allow 40 cadets from the district’s Navy Junior Reserve Officers Training Corps program to participate in a drill meet competition in Bethel, Conn. on Nov. 17. Last year, the team earned five first place awards in the regional competition, which was also in Bethel.

The trip would cost the district no more than $1,200, according to the resolution.

A second field trip would let four qualifying students from the high school’s Varsity Boys and Girls Cross Country Teams participate in the Brown University Invitation in PRovidence, R.I. Attending the meet on October 20 would cost the district no more than $1,000.

About 45 students from the district’s seventh and eighth grade French Clubs and 10 adults would take a weekend trip to Quebec City, Canada in the spring, if the board approves the resolution.

The clubs would leave on a Friday, March 22, and return Monday, March 25. The trip would cost the school $750 for a school nurse to attend.

The final trip for approval is for the high school chamber choir, jazz ensemble and chamber orchestra to perform at the Disney Candlelight Processional in April. The trip for the roughly 100 students would cost $2,500 for a school nurse, substitute teachers and bus transportation for the students and chaperones to Islip airport.

The board will also vote to amend language in the March 2011 agreement between the district and the Riverhead Central Faculty Association to fit external auditors suggestions, superintendent Nancy Carney said. The change in language will have “absolutely no financial impact” on the district or on its teachers, she said.

The school board’s meeting is open to the public and will be held at 7 p.m. in the high school auditorium.

[email protected]

08/17/12 8:00pm
08/17/2012 8:00 PM

PAUL SQUIRE PHOTO | Ensign Thomas Kopp watches as Lt. Amanda Gallo and Ensign Harold Hubbard high five after Riverhead was announced as the winner of the annual drill meet in Mastic Saturday afternoon.

After years of coming close to losing its Navy Junior Reserve Officers Training Corps program, Riverhead school officials expressed concern at a recent board meeting that the program may not recruit enough cadets this year.

But according to current cadets and unit leaders, there’s nothing to fear. In fact, they say, the unit had its largest crop of new recruits in years this spring and will be safe from being cut, thanks to strong recruitment and a solid year of winning drill meets and scholarships.

In their contracts for NJROTC programs, schools agree to maintain cadet rosters of either 10 percent of the host school’s population or 100 cadets, whichever is less, U.S. Navy officials said. The Riverhead NJROTC is bound by the 100-cadet minimum.

“A lot of people are making sure that they don’t come in with a low enrollment number,” said Michael Miller, a public affairs specialist with the Naval Service Training Command, which oversees the NJROTC program.

Mr. Miller said the Navy “loves the [NJROTC]” but was forced to start making cuts to programs that couldn’t get their enrollment numbers above contractual obligations.

“We’ve never wanted to cut units,” he said. “Now, because of the fiscal climate we’ve had the past few years, we’ve had to go ahead and start cutting units and the ones who are getting cut are the ones who aren’t meeting that minimum enrollment requirement.”

Due to past struggles reaching the required numbers in Riverhead, school administrators were worried the unit would lose its funding next year.

“[The Navy] never really paid attention to [enrollment] before,” said Lois Etzel, Riverhead’s assistant superintendent of curriculum and instruction. “The government has gotten very stringent about following the regulations about the size.”

Harry Hubbard, a senior at Riverhead High School, NJROTC drill team commander and executive officer of the unit, said the Riverhead unit was on probation with the Navy due to low enrollment. He attributed a bump in this year’s enrollment numbers to better recruitment efforts in the middle school.

“This year at recruiting, we really got it down,” he said. “We were a lot more emphatic with the kids.”

Harry said the unit will have a total of 123 cadets this school year, 20 more than it had last year, thanks to an influx of at least 50 new cadets from the lower grades.

“It’s insane,” he said of the number of new recruits. “I’m not sure how we’re going to handle it.”

He added that the three prestigious scholarships won by Riverhead cadets last school year, as well as success at drill meets, may have played a part in bringing the program to the forefront.

“I think it was more of the recruiting that did it, but … hearing that you can go to college, basically for free, helped,” Harry said.

Lt. Col. Peter McCarthy, leader of the unit, could not be reached for comment.

Mike Kujawski, a senior chief in the Riverhead NJROTC unit, said cadets do much more than drill and win scholarships; they also volunteer at beach clean-ps and with the Riverhead Rotary Club, as well as serving as color guard for local events.

Having more than enough cadets will let the unit focus on those activities, he said.

“It’s really exciting for not just me but for all the other cadets who are enrolled,” Mike said. “We can just stay afloat from that funding from the Navy.”

[email protected]

12/19/11 10:00am

GIANNA VOLPE PHOTO | Brian Weinhardt and Amanda Gall of Riverhead High School NJROTC were recently awarded $180,000 Navy scholarships.

The News-Review sat down recently for a quick chat with Riverhead High NJROTC scholarship winners Brian Weinhardt and Amanda Gallo.

The two Riverhead students will head to college next year, each on $180,000 Navy scholarships.