11/20/14 7:00am
11/20/2014 7:00 AM
Junius Atkins Jr. has been working at Suffolk County Community College for over 35 years. The Riverhead High School graduate, who works in a custodial supervisory role, was recently recognized for his service with a SUNY Chancellor's Award, one of five given each year. SUNY employs 50,000 people statewide. (Credit: Cyndi Murray)

Junius Atkins Jr. has been working at Suffolk County Community College for over 35 years. The Riverhead High School graduate, who works in a custodial supervisory role, was recently recognized for his service with a SUNY Chancellor’s Award, one of five given each year. SUNY employs 50,000 people statewide. (Credit: Cyndi Murray)

His trademark shiny black boots have walked the halls of Suffolk County Community College’s Eastern Campus for more than 35 years.

As the longest-serving employee on campus, Junius Atkins Jr. of Riverhead has garnered a reputation as an innovative professional and all-around stand-up guy since he started as a part-time custodian in 1977, when the Riverside campus opened.  (more…)

11/10/14 11:30am
11/10/2014 11:30 AM
Baggies of Hollywood-branded heroin seized by the East End Drugs Task Force during an investigation into a Riverhead drug ring. (Credit: Paul Squire file)

Baggies of Hollywood-branded heroin seized by the East End Drugs Task Force during an investigation into a Riverhead drug ring. (Credit: Paul Squire file)

Tuition and books will be cheaper over the next three years at Suffolk County Community College for students looking to study drug and alcohol counseling.

SCCC recently received nearly $850,000 from the federal government to go toward its Chemical Dependence Counseling program, which “prepares students for employment or advancement in the field of chemical dependency counseling.” (more…)

05/19/14 2:01pm
05/19/2014 2:01 PM
Emily Espenkotter, 20, and her grandmother, Kathleen Kearney, 66, at Saturday's Suffolk County Community College commencement in Brentwood.

Emily Espenkotter, 20, and her grandmother, Kathleen Kearney, 66, at Sunday’s Suffolk County Community College commencement in Brentwood. (Credit: Espenkotter courtesy)

Standing tall and proud Sunday in a black cap and gown, 66-year-old Kathleen Kearney moved her tassel from the right side to the left, signifying the completion of her associate degree at Suffolk County Community College — and more than a decade’s worth of hard work and determination.

Before accepting her own diploma during ceremonies at the Brentwood campus fieldhouse, Ms. Kearney kept an eye on the aisle as her 20-year-old granddaughter Emily Espenkotter, a Shoreham-Wading River High School graduate, did the same, earning a degree in early childhood development.

It’s the first time in the college’s history that a grandmother and granddaughter have graduated at the same time. (more…)

03/04/14 1:20pm
03/04/2014 1:20 PM
Entrance to the Eastern Campus of the Suffolk County Community College. (Credit: Gayle Sheridan)

Entrance to the Eastern Campus of the Suffolk County Community College. (Credit: Gayle Sheridan)

While the Suffolk County Legislature has been considering increasing the age for everyone throughout the county to purchase tobacco — from age 19 to 21 — another measure could ban smoking completely in a few areas around Suffolk: the community college campuses.

The proposal comes nearly two years after the State University of New York’s trustees voted to ban smoking on all state college campuses, a measure that is still waiting for state legislative approval in order to be enforced.

Because the fact that Suffolk County Community College isn’t regulated by the SUNY trustee board, college officials said that county approval of the measure would bring a smoke-free campus — actually, all three campuses — to the 26,000 students at the schools.

Ben Zwirn, director of legislative affairs at SCCC, said last week that SCCC would be the biggest college campus in the state to ban smoking entirely on its grounds should the measure pass.

Mr. Zwirn cited secondhand smoke as a health issue to those not smoking on campus, in addition to litter. He added that in an online survey of the student body, over 70 percent of respondents — over 2,800 people — were in favor of the regulation.

The move to ban smoking on campus comes on the heels of Legislator William Spencer’s effort to raise the age to buy tobacco products entirely throughout Suffolk. That proposal was subject to a public hearing last month, and will be debated again on Tuesday afternoon at the legislature’s general meeting.

He is expected to sponsor the legislation on Tuesday banning smoking on campus. After that, the measure would need committee approval, be subject to a public hearing, require approval from the entire legislative body, and need a signature from Suffolk County Executive Steve Bellone.

Dr. Spencer (D-Centerport) said last week that “We’re looking to create a healthy, smoke-free environment within the the college’s jurisdiction. I don’t think it’s unreasonable to try that.”

jpinciaro@timesreview.com

01/28/14 3:05pm
01/28/2014 3:05 PM
COURTESY PHOTO | Juanita Trent, Demitri Hampton's mother, at a bench dedicated in his honor on the campus of Suffolk County Community College.

COURTESY PHOTO | Juanita Trent, Demitri Hampton’s mother, at a bench dedicated in his honor on the campus of Suffolk County Community College.

On Monday afternoon, Demitri Hampton’s mother, brother, sister and girlfriend visited the bench dedicated in his memory at the Suffolk County Community College campus in Riverhead. They laid flowers at the site and went to eat together to talk about him. (more…)

12/06/13 10:00am
12/06/2013 10:00 AM

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Suffolk County Community College culinary students will compete against each other at the downtown Riverhead campus Friday, but won’t know what they’re cooking until the event begins.

Much like the reality cooking show Chopped, students will receive a mystery basket of ingredients and asked to turn them into a dish. Judges will be evaluating each one’s creativity, presentation and taste.

The top chef will win a seven-night stay at the Sheraton Clearwater Beach Resort in Clearwater, Fla., and an opportunity to work under the supervision of the resort’s executive chef. The contest’s “Battle for the Beach” prize also includes round-trip airfare and ground transportation.

“This competition takes students a step closer to becoming professional chefs,” Suffolk County Community College’s Culinary Arts Program director Richard Freilich said in a statement. “It is a great opportunity to help them grow and to see if this is truly a career they want to pursue.”

The free event starts at 2 p.m. and is open to the public.

For more information, contact the culinary school at (631) 548-3700.

jennifer@timesreview.com

11/28/13 7:52am
11/28/2013 7:52 AM

BARBARAELLEN KOCH PHOTO | Culinary students Kristina Caschetta (left) Anastasia DeRosa (center) and Alexa Cimino with the carved up roasted turkeys that were prepared for the Dominican Sisters Wednesday morning.

Suffolk County Community College’s Culinary School in downtown Riverhead partnered for the fourth year with the Dominican Sisters Family Health Service to cook and prepare about 140 dinners for long-term patients and home-bound seniors of the Dominican Sisters of Hampton Bays.

Local businesses on the North and South Forks teamed up to raise money for the feast.

Chef instructor Vinny Winn worked with about 40 students and high school volunteers in the culinary’s kitchen to prepare the meal. They cooked 15 turkeys weighing 15 pounds each, 100 pounds each of mashed and sweet potatoes, seven gallons of gravy and 20 pounds of stuffing. There were also rolls, cranberry sauce and 24 apple pies and 24 pumpkin pies.

Local elementary schools students made and decorated trays for the meals.