The Public Session
Vice President Petronella’s Remarks
Good evening Trustees, members of the administration, faculty, staff, students, alumni, and guests. My name is Darren Petronella. I am the newly elected Vice-President for Non-Classroom and Professional faculty for the Nassau Community College Federation of Teachers. I am a full Professor in the Student Personnel Services department, where I work primarily as a career and transfer counselor, teach career development and first-year courses, and coordinate and present student workshops, programs, and events. It is my pleasure to introduce myself and to speak to you, on behalf of the NCCFT Executive Committee. Because we want you to get to know all of us, the elected officers of the NCCFT will be speaking to you on a rotating basis on behalf of our members and of the students we all serve.
During this time last year, in March 2020, our members moved quickly to undertake the Herculean task of making sure our students were able to continue their education under what would be an understatement to call “challenging circumstances.” While we have successfully transitioned our teaching, service, and student engagement toward remote modalities, we all know that significant challenges remain. And there will be new challenges as we move to bring the entire NCC community back to campus.
We know how hard everyone is working to plan for the Summer and Fall semesters. We recognize the difficulties in planning caused by the uncertainty surrounding the pandemic and the lack of explicit guidance from SUNY. We understand and appreciate the diligence, creativity, and mindfulness that contribute to these efforts. We also know, however, that no matter what shape our reopening plan finally takes, when it comes to providing the education for which our students come to us, it will be the members of the NCCFT who lead the way, through our commitment to shared governance, our pursuit of excellence, and our dedication to our students. Providing that leadership, a core component of the value we bring to this campus, is what it means to be a full-time faculty member. Once again, in other words, we stand ready to do our part. Thank you.