Commuter Student Spotlight

Each month, CSLI is putting a commuter student in the spotlight! We’re looking for student achievements in all areas – academics, community service, Athletics, student-led organizations… let us know about the great things you do at SUNY Old Westbury to inspire other students! If you want to be featured in the next Commuter Student Spotlight, email CommuterLife [at] oldwestbury.edu!

May commuter of the month Ashley posing outside the student union buildingMay Commuter of the Month

The Center for Student Leadership and Involvement proudly acknowledges Ashley R. Alvarado as our May Commuter of the Month! 
 
Ashley is a great person & a terrific leader on OW campus! Ashley is actively involved in the Student Government Association and is a Campus Life Senator. 
 
Ashley has been on the Dean’s List and received a Certificate of Achievement from the Honors College. Ashley is also a member of Omicron Delta Kappa and Alpha Phi.  
 
Let’s get to know Ashley! 
 
CSLI: What year are you in?  
COTM: Junior Year.
 
CSLI: What are you studying? 
COTM: Pre-Law Studies and Philosophy. 
 
CSLI: What clubs are you involved in?  
COTM: I’m an Executive Council President for the Honors College and a Campus Life Senator for the Student Government Association.
 
CSLI: What advice would you give other commuters?  
COTM: Don't take too long to take initiative. If you feel passionate about a certain topic then do it. Waiting too long can result in never starting. 
 
CSLI: Why did you choose SUNY Old Westbury?  
COTM: I choose SUNY Old Westbury because of its small class sizes, proximity to home, tuition price, and opportunities for leadership on campus.

April Commuter of the month Rivka Mullokandova in black dressApril Commuter of the Month

"The Center for Student Leadership and Involvement proudly acknowledges Rivka C. Mullokandova as our April “Commuter of the Month”!

Rivka is very active and a great leader on OW campus! Rivka is involved in the Honors College and is the Founder and President of the first Hillel Club on Campus. Rivka is a regular speaker on the Wise Radio Show, Rivka also has a Honors College Internship where she works in the Green house and enhances the aquaponics and hydroponics system in the Green house.

Rivka received the Certificate of Academic Excellence Fall 2018, was recognized by Dr. DeLuca, Head of the Honors College, and received an award for starting Hillel.

Let’s get to know Rivka!

CSLI: What year are you in? 
Rivka: I am in my second year of College, but on paper I am considered a junior.

CSLI: What are you studying?
Rivka: I am in the BS/DO 3/4 Program at the college, which is a program linked with NYITCOM to become a Doctor of Osteopathic Medicine. 
As for my degree, I am getting a degree in biology.

CSLI: What clubs are you involved in? 
Rivka: I am involved in the Hillel Club and the Wise Club. Hillel is the first Jewish Club on our campus and as for WISE, I participate in the radio show that airs live every Monday.

CSLI: What advice would you give other commuters? 
Rivka: To just enjoy the ride. Driving to school back and forth for an hour can seem dreadful, but it is truly a time to just reflect on what you hope your day to be like and what you could have done differently throughout the school day. For my motto is "Hakuna Matata, which means "No Worries" as funny as that may seem.

CSLI: Why did you choose SUNY Old Westbury? 
Rivka: When I came for my interview for the BS/DO 3/4 Program, smelling the air and viewing the environment on the campus intrigued me right away. I felt a sense of rightness on the campus."

Commuter of the month Atqiya Syed on a river ferry wearing a blue dressMarch Commuter of the Month

The Center for Student Leadership and Involvement proudly acknowledges Atqiya Syed as our March “Commuter of the Month”! 

Atqiya is truly a leader on SUNY Old Westbury Campus. Along with being Vice President of Business and Finance for SGA, she works a separate job on the weekends, sits on the Financial Literacy Committee to bring students FLOW, has been an active member of the Honors College, and also works with Radio WISE to deliver science and technology related news and headline conversations and interviews related to various topics.

Let’s get to know Atqiya! 

CSLI: What year are you in?

Atqiya: I'm a senior.

CSLI: What are you studying?

Atqiya: I’m a Public Health major and plan to further my study into health informatics.

CSLI: What clubs are you involved in?

Atqiya: I'm Vice President of Business and Finance for SGA. Some clubs I keep up with are Women in Science and Engineering (WISE), the Pre-Health Club and the South Asian Student Association. 

CSLI: What advice would you give other commuters? 

Atqiya: Try to keep your class schedule spread evenly through weekdays so you still have time during the week. This way you don't feel as tired when you go to work on the weekends, if you do. But always keep one day per week for just yourself where you don't have anything to do but to wind down or do light work so you don't burn out. 

CSLI: Why did you choose SUNY Old Westbury? 

Atqiya: I chose OW because of the close distance to home and have not regretted it!

Lenny Giambalvo

February Commuter of the Month 

The Center for Student Leadership and Involvement proudly acknowledges Leonard (“Lenny”) D. Giambalvo as our February Commuter of the Month! 

Lenny is doing great things!  Lenny has amassed many awards. He received the SUNY Chancellor’s Award for Student Excellence Spring 2017, Phi Theta Kappa Honor Society (PTK): ALL-New York Academic Award Spring 2017, Annett Rapkin Scholarship Recipient Spring 2017, and “Get There From Here” Scholarship Recipient Spring 2016 to name a few.  Let’s get to know Lenny:

CSLI: What year are you in? 

Lenny: Senior. 

CSLI: What are you studying?

Lenny: Accounting.

CSLI: What clubs are you involved in? 

Lenny: Accounting Society (Member), ODK Honor Society (President), Tau Sigma Honor Society (Member), and SGA - CAB Branch (Chair of Intramural Sports)

CSLI: What advice would you give other commuters? 

Lenny's motto: Have a dream, make a plan, and follow that plan one step at a time.

Things that every student should do:

  1. Network / Get involved 
  2. Always have 1 hour per week for me time 
  3. Time management and communication are major keys to success 

CSLI: Why did you choose SUNY Old Westbury? 

Lenny: I chose SUNY Old Westbury because it is known for having a good accounting program at an affordable rate.

 
December commuter of the month pausing in front of panther statue by student union

December Commuter of the Month 

The Center for Student Leadership and Involvement proudly acknowledges Sasha C. St. Juste (Campus Activities Board) for being our December “Commuter of the Month”! 

Sasha exemplifies Panther Pride and what it means to be tenacious! Sasha is the recipient of the Vice President for Student Affairs Award for Academic Excellence and Leadership. Let’s get to know Sasha. 

CSLI: What year are you in? 

Sasha: Senior.

CSLI: What are you studying?

Sasha: Politics, Economics, and Law

CSLI: What clubs are you involved in? 

Sasha: Campus Activities Board Chair of Late Night Programming/ Weekend Events and Center for Student Leadership and Involvement Intern/ Front Desk Supervisor 

CSLI: What advice would you give other commuters? 

Sasha: My advice would be to step out of your comfort zone and try something new. It took me a while to do it but when I did, I found myself engaged in different parts of the campus community. I completely understand how difficult it is to be a member of different clubs and organizations while having outside obligations. But taking the initiative to set time aside to engage with the campus community and bring about a change that you want to see in this school gives inspiration to those who are not willing to do so. I was able to find my strengths and weaknesses through the different organizations that I became apart of and I believe that other commuter students would be able to do the same.

CSLI: Why did you choose SUNY Old Westbury? 

Sasha: I chose SUNY Old Westbury for it's diverse outlook. Seeing the various ethnicity interacting and engaging with one another through student lead events and monthly diversity programming shows how accepting and welcoming the Old Westbury community is. I found that getting involved on campus was one of the easiest things to do. Responding to a Facebook post from Jamie Jones(Associate Director of CSLI) landed me an internship within CSLI. I then saw the variety leadership sessions and workshops on campus, which can be found through many programs on campus such as the Leadership Development Certificate Program. Simple engagements with campus faculty and student leaders provided me with experiences that I can take with me well after college.

 

November Commuter of the month pausing in front of nassau county podiumNovember Commuter of the Month 

The Center for Student Leadership and Involvement proudly acknowledges Josselin Paz Torres, Executive Vice President, Student Government Association, as our November Commuter of the Month! 

Josselin continues to inspire everyone she meets. She works for Local 338 (Retail Wholesale Department Store Union-RWDSU), was awarded with the “Student Leader Award” by Long Island Jobs with Justice, received the Court Appointed Specialist Award from the Nassau County Executive and serves on the Student Government Association Executive Board. These are just a few of her many accomplishments. Let’s get to know Josselin:

CSLI: What year are you in? 

Josselin: I am a fourth year student

CSLI: What are you studying?

Josselin: Industrial and Labor Relations

CSLI: What clubs are you involved in? 

Josselin: I have joined several clubs throughout my time at SUNY Old Westbury, some of those include: Politics, Economics and Law Club, Alianza Latina, United Nations Association, and the Undocumented Student Alliance. All of these clubs have enriched my experience on campus and allowed me to form meaningful friendships.

CSLI: What advice would you give other commuters? 

Josselin: Get involved! This advice is not a new one, but it is a needed one. Not all students really take into consideration the difference that getting involved makes, not just socially to improve your on campus experience but professionally. Becoming involved opens so many doors and can begin to form a path for you in whichever way you wish to create it. You just have to take the first step. For me, it was applying for a Commuter Assistant position. From that point forward, I was able to become more involved, know more people, build connections and the opportunities came with that. 

CSLI: Why did you choose SUNY Old Westbury? 

Josselin: The convenience of having a campus that was close to home, had my major, and was comprised of a diverse community. Even with all that, I could not have imagined how much Old Westbury would allow me to grow and develop as a student and a professional. Upon graduation I have offers of full-time employment in jobs that are within my field due to the opportunities given to me here.