Friday, May 22, 2015

Cheyenne Suffern, Class of 2014 - Now Sheet Metal Worker

Cheyenne Suffern stopped by McKee High School on Friday, May 22, 2015. Here is her post-secondary success story.
Cheyenne Suffern
McKee 2014
Construction Skills
Sheet Metal Worker – Local 28

Honestly, I knew I had to finish school. Teachers like Ms. Gorgoglione, and Mr. O’Connell, always had me on the right path. They always had faith in me and they pushed me to succeed. I always liked the carpentry program at McKee. I realized I had a choice - I did not have to go to college. I also realized that the carpentry program at McKee would lead me into an exciting apprenticeship program, which would lead to a career where I would make very good money. What!!!

I wanted to be in the type of sheet metal work that does the electric signs. Instead, due to a mix up in the paperwork, I got into the four week program for duct, roofing and renovations work. It’s similar to carpentry but it is metal.

I completed Construction Skills in July 2014. If you think you have tests at McKee you have another thing coming. I had to take 30 tests within a 4 week period based upon what I had learned. Those 30 tests included the pre-tests, tests and competency tests.

I had to go take a test to get into the union. You have to go through a 6 month probationary period where you are now under the eye of the director of the school, the company, and all of the authority figures. You have to make sure that you comply with doing the job to the best of your ability and being on time. On time is late.

I was assigned to different job sites. The earliest report time I had was to start at 6 a.m. This means I had to be on the job site by 5:30 a.m. This means I had to wake up at 2:30 a.m.

Was it worth it? Yes. Is it worth it? You bet.

You never know how much you can create with metal until you are actually in the field. One of my friends made a hanging desk in metal. You can make a shoe rack in metal. In my local, there are so many different fields. You can work in the shop; you can work in the field. You can be a welder or a sketcher. The possibilities are endless and I plan to push myself so that I can explore my full potential which may involve using my experiences within the sheet metal field to explore other avenues, such as OSHA – Occupational Safety and Health Administration.

Thursday, May 21, 2015

McKee Students Tour Bayonne Bridge

Worth a read - today, May 21, 2015, McKee students who are in the Pre-Engineering program toured the Bayonne Bridge:

Wednesday, May 20, 2015

Shedier's Post Secondary Story

Look who stopped by McKee High School: Sherrieshedier Jones. I whooped for joy. Here is "Shedier's" post-secondary story.


As a graduate of the class of 2014, I am now enrolled in UTI in Exton, PA.  I am enjoying my experience there as a first year student focusing on Automotive Technology with a secondary focus on Diesel Automotive Technology. 

As I am progressing through my post-secondary education, I am learning that I need to decipher the things that are important from the things that are not so important. 

Focus on what you want and you will be successful.   You need to overcome the circumstances that can hold you back.  Everyone goes through different things but it’s the way you get through it that makes you who you are. 

Here at McKee I had a lot of problems that prevented me from getting the grades I needed.  I realized I needed to leave those problems behind to get to where I needed to be.  Now that I am in college I realize what I need to do to get to where I need to be. 

FOCUS! Keep your eye on the prize – graduate high school and go on to a post-secondary education and you will be successful.  

Friday, May 15, 2015

McKee Students To Care for Infant Simulators for 72 Hours

What is this young man holding in his hands? He is part of McKee's Health class and is experiencing the unit entitled "Baby Think It Over." He will be responsible for caring for an infant simulator for 72 hours. The infant simulators are from Reality Works.

This year, McKee High School was awarded a grant from the Staten Island Foundation to purchase infant simulators to add an engaging interactive component to the Health class curriculum. Each student is provided with a bag of toiletries, blanket, and bottle. The infant simulators go through 15 different real world events. Additionally there is a computer chip which registers the quality and type of care the infant simulator received. The teacher, Dr. Estephan, is able to provide each student with a print out at the end of the caring cycle. The students have to respond to the events or else the infant simulator makes increasing distressing cries.

When asked how he was feeling, the student responded - "I'm dreading this already. This is really heavy." It is Friday. The infant simulator will turn on at 6 p.m. The school day has ended and he's already experiencing a few issues. Can you spot one issue that the computer chip in the infant simulator will read as problematic?

Chris Richardson, McKee '14 - Post Secondary Journey

Christian Richardson, McKee '14 stopped by McKee. Here's his post-secondary success story.
Christopher Richardson
McKee 2014
BMCC, 2016
The activity that made me successful at McKee High School was learning how to communicate. I became very strong at talking to different teachers. Another activity that made me a better student and person was organizing different events.

Debate assignments frequently occur in college. Networking is an activity that a student must do in order to succeed. The skill that I have acquired from participating in networking events has developed my ability to extemporaneously speak.

I always knew I was supposed to go to college. McKee did help me to select the major that I would pursue in Borough of Manhattan Community College. My major is engineering science. People should know that the first year of college is devoted to satisfying general education requirements.

At first writing papers was a challenge at BMCC. Oh my God! I was not used to writing expository papers to such an extent. At BMCC there is a clear and distinct demand for long, detailed papers. I took advice from other students. I learned to make drafts, and then to revise and then edit before submitting the papers. I learned to be better at time management.

My advice to students at McKee: read more. Read newspapers. Read about current events from many different reliable sources because it makes you sound like you know what you are talking about when you are in formal situations surrounded by many different people who have many different experiences. It is necessary to be able to communicate. By talking to classmates, one gets key information and study tips to pass classes. From talking to professors, one gets participation points, and extra credit towards a grade.

Jessica Story stopped by McKee High School on Thursday, May 14, 2015.

Jessica Story stopped by McKee High School on Thursday, May 14, 2015. Check out her post-secondary success story.
Jessica Story
Accountant / Entrepreneur / Community Activist
McKee ‘08
Berkeley College, BA 2013

A turning point for me at McKee was when I ran into some issues with a former art teacher that jeopardized my high school graduation. Due to my determination, I was able to negotiate doing “art boot camp.” The overall lesson is that regardless of the down falls one may encounter in life, stay determined and focused and a person will experience success.

Two weeks after my high school graduation, I started the summer session at Berkeley College. I had to pay for college. I had to get loans. I had to work two jobs. It was difficult working two jobs and going to college but I found a balance and was able to maintain a personal life.

As in any endeavor, one encounters bumps in the road. One of the college’s policies is that all professors have to submit their attendance to the Academics Department. One professor did not. Because of that mistake, I was withdrawn from school and “I was not having that," as Ms. Henry knows. I went to the chairperson of the department and he let me know that the professor was new and did not know the protocols. The chairperson accompanied me to a meeting with the Dean of the Academics Department. Because I was able to articulate and advocate for myself, I was readmitted to Berkeley College.

I am a workaholic. Right now I have three jobs, a tax business and a non-profit organization. I just believe that I have great goals and achievements that I need to accomplish. I believe in working hard to get what you want in order to succeed. Nothing is going to be handed to you. Like Nike – Just do it.

Science Matters at McKee High School

Check out Mr. Crabbe’s Living Environment class as covered in the Staten Island Advance in:…/science_matters_mckee_high_sch.html…

Michael Martinez, McKee '14 stopped by to visit McKee High School!!!

Michael Martinez, McKee '14 stopped by to visit McKee High School. Here is his post-secondary success story.
Michael Martinez
McKee 2014

Universal Technical Institute, March 2016
The Automotive Technology program at McKee was and is my passion. I love working on cars. Mr. Sarno is a great teacher. Mr. Sarno has a big heart. He really cares. The only reason I am at Universal Technical Institute (UTI) is because Mr. Sarno took the Automotive Technology class on trips to different technical colleges. When I came back from one of the trips, I realized I had to improve my grades.

When I graduated, I started UTI on Sept. 29, 2015. It is a whole different trip. UTI is more advanced training. I learned how to take apart an engine; suspensions, brakes, and electrical. I have worked on diesel transmissions and diesel engines. Most of my classes at UTI feel like a review of what Mr. Sarno taught at McKee. There is a difference. At McKee, Mr. Sarno is watching your back. At Universal Technical Institute, YOU ARE ON YOUR OWN.

There was only one class this year that I struggled with at UTI. It was the Electrical class. I really did not know much about the topic. It was my first time learning the information. I did not understand how power runs through wires. It was a whole different ball game. I had to get a passing grade. I took tutoring. I talked to my teachers. I never gave up. I received a B+ for my efforts.

To get into the automotive field, you need strong passion. You have to love cars. You have to be responsible. Those are the keys to McKee and to future success.

A Senior's Project Using the CNC Router at McKee High School

Robert Krvicic, McKee 2015, created an FDNY medallion using the large CNC router in the senior carpentry class. I was blown away by this first product (see below) made by Robert.Under the guidance of Mr. Dennis O'Connell (Carpentry instructor) and Mr. Leo Gordon (Graphics Arts instructgor), Robert kept working on the calculations and information to be placed in the CNC router to execute the design. Check it out.

Monday, May 4, 2015

19 Seagulls at the Tech Crunch Disrupt Conf. 2015

Shout out to Mayor DeBlasio for mentioning McKee  High School in his opening remarks at the TechCrunch Disrupt New York Conference held today, May 4, 2015. Check it out:…/mayor-de-blasio-offers-three-pilla…/

Tuesday, April 28, 2015

Day 2 - College and Career Week at McKee

We wear our "stylish" socks to symbolically represent Ralph R. McKee High School students seeking out the multiple pathways to college and a career.

Got our silly socks as we seeek out our destination along the multiple pathways to college and a career. — at Ralph R. McKee CTE High School.

The focus today was on junior to get them to understand the importance of building their portfolio for college and/or career.


Baruch College presentation occurred in the library by Mr. David Stephens. McKee's college adviser/guidance counselor, Ms.Jenny Millz Pecora is on the right. — at Ralph R. McKee CTE High School.

Monday, April 27, 2015

Day 1 - College and Career Week at McKee HS

Day 1 - 10th grade students heard from presenters: Mike Zinn – Mechanical Engineer;
Mike Shaleesh – Contractor; Mike Pietruch – Graphics/Software Engineer; Henry Rau – Computer Science/Repairs; Robert Widener – Architect / FDNY; Barbara Federico – Advertising; Stephen Mercaldo – Automotive;
Mike Hopkins – Verizon Fleet Operations; Ronald Woody – NYPD to name a few.
Teachers and some students used the symbol of wearing sunglasses to represent the glowing brightness of the future multiple paths of McKee HS students.

Yes, that's me, Ms. Henry, Principal of McKee HS.
 I have to wear sunglasses as the future of the students at McKee HS shines bright like the sun.

Here is a picture of the many presenters who spoke to our sophomores about College and Career options today, Day 1 of McKee's College and Career Week.

Here are some pics, taken by me, of students and staff sporting their sunglasses.
Brigid Howley (l-English instructor) and Jean Donohue (r-lab specialist) sporting sunglasses for Monday, April 27
Mr. Cyrus (student)

Ms. Haleema (student) and Randi Kornberg-Zuckerberg(paraprofessional) 
Laura Mahlooji (l-Social Studies Instructor)  and Kristin Lapenta (r-Science Instructor)
Joe Pietuch (l-presenter) and Leo Gordon (r-Grpahic Arts Instructor)

McKee faculty recognizing the bright futures of students (l-r) Steve Chandler, Karen Davis, Chris App, Joanna Padula,
Ms. Kaylin (student) 

Thursday, April 23, 2015

College/Career Week at McKee April 27 - May 1

Show Your College and Career Pride Every Day of The Week

College Week:

Monday – April 27, 2015 My future’s so bright
Sport your best sunglasses.

Tuesday – April 28, 2015 Silly Sock Day
Are you going to college? Heading to an internship: career?
Wear silly socks to show us that you have to travel to your post-secondary choice.

Wednesday – April 29th, 2015 - Tie it to Higher Education
Wear the coolest tie/scarf

Thursday – April 30th, 2015 - McKee Swag
Sport your best McKee swag.

Friday – May 1, 2015 - College T-shirt Day

Wear favorite college’s t-shirt and show college and/or career pride.

Tuesday, April 21, 2015

Support Community Day @ Commons Cafe - Fundraiser for McKee's PTA

The infant simulators are coming . . .

Health unit revs up at McKee High School.
The unit involving the infant simulators is coming.  This year, through the wonderful support of the Staten Island Foundation,  Ralph R. McKee CTE High School​ was able to purchase 12 new infant simulators and 3 additional items that show the impact of shaken baby syndrome, chemical substance abuse, and fetal alcohol.
As you can see this will enable Ms. Estephan to distribute and monitor almost a full class set.  The stages of programming, testing, introducing how the infant simulators work is still to be done.

By the way, the infant simulators provide 15 different events that the students must address. Let's see how the two Health classes do spring 2015.

Friday, April 17, 2015

2 from McKee in Girls Who Code NYC Summer 2015

Want to see a cool email two McKee students received:

Congratulations! On behalf of the entire Girls Who Code Team, we are delighted to offer you a spot in the 2015 Girls Who Code Summer Immersion Program at AOL, located at CUNY ASRC 85 St Nicolas Terrace, New York, NY 10027. The program will run from Monday, July 6th to Friday, August 21st, from 9 a.m. – 4 p.m. Monday through Friday. Our selection committee was impressed by the ambition and passion demonstrated in your application and has selected you to join 1,139 other outstanding girls nationwide in becoming the Girls Who Code Class of 2015.

The Summer Immersion Program will be a life-changing experience. For 7 weeks, you’ll be side by side with girls who share your passion for technology. You’ll get exposure to leaders in the industry and learn the computing skills needed to build the products you want to see in the world.

Kudos and congratulations to Chynna Cummings (L) and Chenoa Ebanks (R) who will be participants in Girls Who Code Summer 2015.   Talk about having bringing a big smile to a principal's face.

Tuesday, April 7, 2015

Ivan Carillo, McKee HS graduate, taking a break in Turkey

While coming in to school to do paperwork during spring break, I received this amazing picture from McKee High School graduate, Ivan Carillo. He is in the Air Force, and managed to squeeze in time to take a ride on a camel in Turkey.

These are the moments that give me a second wind to dive into the onslaught of paperwork on my desk.

Friday, April 3, 2015

McKee Information Technology Interns from ASI

     Congrats to (l-r) Ethan Piner and Stephon Barrett,  Ralph R. McKee CTE High School students for receiving acknowledgement for their work as information technology interns at ASI. 

Monday, March 30, 2015

Empowerment Panel on Saturday, March 28, 2015

Great day at the UFT on Saturday, March 28, 2015, for (Left to Right) Jessica Padilla, Zully Roman, and Luis Hoffman. Students listened to a panel of celebrities who overcame obstacles as children and excelled in their careers. TT Torres, daytime DJ from Hot 97, talked about how her mother left her at her friend's house at the age of 14. Ms. Torres surmounted considerable odds to graduate college in Virginia and start up as a DJ. Currently she is a NYC DJ in one of the biggest radio station markets across the country. Ms. Torres started " I will wait till I graduate," a campaign to keep teenagers Informed about how difficult it is to raise a child when one is a teenage single mother.

Thursday, March 26, 2015

Jeremy Duenas' Logo Selected for TFI: NYC

A Holy Cow moment - Just found out a student from Ralph R. McKee CTE High School, Jeremy Duenas', logo has officially been selected to represent The Fellowship Initiative (TFI): NYC for years to come! Logos were submitted from each city to represent their part of the program. Mine is one of four - New York City, Los Angeles, Chicago and TFI - and will represent the NYC cohort.
Jeremy's logo will be on all future promotional items, presentations and letterheads from TFI: NYC.
The student on the left is from McKee High School, Class of 2013. His name is Tracy Cooper, who is currently in college and is involved in giving back by being a young mentor in TFI. Way Cool!!!

Saturday, March 21, 2015

2nd SEP Hackathon Results - Congratulations to all

The 2nd SEP Hackathon has just concluded. Let me take a moment to speak on behalf of the judges: Mr. DeFilippo, Ms. Mahlooji, Mr. Lombardo (Guest Judge), Mr. Kapur (Guest Judge), and I to indicate how ecstatic I am with the range of creativity and ideas that I heard and saw.
Here are the results:

First Place - Meme Dream Team who devised a learning environment survey prototype app

Second Place - The Four Amigos Team who devised an feed to make it easier to access the features on the McKee website.

Third Place - Distracted Driving Team who devised a game to indicate the dangers of texting while driving with room to explore other methods that could compromise

Fourth Place - UJAME who devised a web application that would help students "de-stress" from their day by looking at soothing cool colors and motivational quotes.

Honorable Mention - Virtual Wallet who wanted to have one method for students to have access to a range of information on a mobile app: ID, to funds.

It is an adrenaline rush to see young minds whirring and crafting possibilities.

2nd SEP Hack-a-thon at McKee High School, Mar. 21, 2015

Check it out - It's a Saturday, and students are eagerly having intense discussions in order to design a mobile app that would entrance the masses.

Take a look:

The Post Secondary Success Story of Raja Kapur - McKee 2005

     Students from Ralph R. McKee CTE High School are upstairs participating in the Software Engineering Program (SEP) Hack-a-thon. The focus will be on developing mobile apps. Two former students of Mr. Pedersen stopped by to support the students and to see Mr. P. One alumnus is Raja Kapur, and here is his post secondary success story.

Raja Kapur
McKee 2005
CTO, Shoptiques

I was always interested in IT and that’s what drove me to McKee High School.  It was over an hour in travel time, as I lived by the mall.  Being in the CISCO program helped me to know how my skills compared to my peers and what areas I needed to improve. Being in a group setting helped me to push my boundaries and capabilities.  When you work by yourself you do not have a comparison in order to know how well you are achieving.  The set up at McKee in the CISCO gave me the confidence in my skills to be able to apply them both professionally and educationally.
McKee helped me get an internship at a local IT company. While I was there I realized my true passion was in Software Development.  From there I used my existing skills to secure an entry level position in a Software Development Agency. Throughout this time I was attending night classes at College of Staten Island for a computer science degree.
As I took on more and more responsibilities in my career, I found that I did not have time for the night time studies.  The key to success was and is my curiosity and my hunger to learn more.  That is the secret.  It is what gets you noticed by those who are in control of companies. My employers noticed that my knowledge base kept expanding and rewarded my for my efforts.
          My advice is to push your boundaries and compare yourself to your peers. Don’t hold yourself back by assuming you cannot accomplish a goal.
Stay hungry about learning. I am always ready to expand my knowledge about IT and about business operations.  

Parent Teacher Conferences at McKee High School

Open Parent-Teacher’s Night
March 26th
5:30 p.m. – 8:00 p.m.
Open Parent-Teacher’s Afternoon
March 27th
12:30 p.m. – 2:30 p.m.

Report cards will be distributed at the
Parent / Teacher Conferences.

Pictures from the 2nd Annual YEA Event, Mar. 19, 2015

Just wanted to take a moment to share these amazing photographs taken at the Young Entrepreneur's Academy Event that is sponsored by the Staten Island Chamber of Commerce and held at Staten Island Technical High School on March 19th, 2015. It was a late start but I must tell you the range of ideas presented was captivating.


  This is quite an august panel of investors.  I do not know if I would have the wherewithal to present to seasoned business people my idea for a business.  But then again, when I was 16, my head was in the clouds and the latest Star Trek episode.

Stephon Barrett presented his idea for ReFerb - a company that refurbishes out of date computers.

 Here is Jessica indicating that Jay's Creations provides customized designs on sneakers or shoes.

Here's the YEA Class of 2015 with members of the Staten Island Chamber of Commerce.

Apture Multimedia