Karen, Victor and Freddy are National Academic Champions!

After being crowned the Long Island Regional Quiz Bowl Champions for the second straight year, Wheatley’s JV Brainstormers team qualified for participation in the 37th annual National Academic Championship in Chicago, Illinois.

On June 8th, an immensely talented JV team consisting of Karen Li, Victor Li, and Frederick Lin arrived in The Windy City and proceeded to blow away the competition. After finishing with a 5-1 record in the preliminary rounds, the Wheatley Brainstormers decisively won the 2019 National Academic Championship with a final score of 365-180.

In between matches, the team made its way to downtown Chicago to visit Cloud Gate, which is more affectionately known as “The Bean” to tourists. Additionally, the Brainstormers were afforded the opportunity to visit The Art Institute of Chicago as well as the Friendly Confines of Wrigley Field.

Congratulations to Karen, Victor and Freddy for this remarkable accomplishment! A huge “Thank You” to John Beleckas, who coached the students and accompanied them to Chicago for this trip!

[Thanks to Mr. Beleckas for the write-up and the photos!]

Dr. Staudt’s Class Goes Fishing!

On Tuesday, 4 June, Dr. Staudt’s College Regional Studies class went fishing as part of its Long Island Maritime Traditions program. For many of the students, it was their first time ever fishing and catching a fish.  Along with the crew of the Dolphin, Mr. Storck, Mr. Hurley and Dr. Staudt took the opportunity to not only teach our students how to fish but also lessons about the bayhouses on the south shore. They also discussed the marine life that is still abundantly populating our waters.

Altogether, the thirty seniors on the trip landed over 16 fish including fluke and sand sharks.  Students really enjoyed their day and many said it was one of the highlights of their senior year.

[Thanks to Dr. Staudt for the write-up and the photos!]

SUPA Forensics Students Solve “Crimes” in the Field

SUPA Forensics is one of two Dual Enrollment classes we offer through Syracuse University Project Advance.  Students who take Dual Enrollment courses earn college credit for the course, credit that is awarded through a transcript from the partner institution.

On Friday, 31 May, thirty-five SUPA Forensics students participated in three crime scene excavation and processing scenarios on the campus of New York Institute of Technology (NYIT).  The two scenes “created” for the students included a clandestine grave and one body in a rug roll.

Using techniques taught by Ms. Chanin-Bermudez throughout the year, students were hands-on in the approach, removal and tagging of any evidence located while unearthing each site.

The scenes were created and supervised by Asst Professor/retired NYPD Deputy Inspector of Police, Andrew Costello and colleagues Gary Gomula, retired Deputy Chief and Josephine Curry, retired Detective.  It was an informative and educational experience for all!

[Thanks to Ms. Chanin-Bermudez for the write-up and the photos!]

Our SWS Picnic Helps Introduce the New Students to the Community!

On Wednesday, 29 May, the SWS community welcomed its new members with a lunchtime barbeque at Eisenhower Park. The weather cooperated and the event went off without a hitch. The current SWS seniors hosted the rest of the community, providing an excellent meal with a multitude of delicious options. SWS faculty helped grill the food and serve the students.

This annual tradition provides seniors with a chance to give back to the community. Additionally, some SWS alumni stopped by to pitch in and check on the community. This year, SWS is welcoming 30 new members. At the picnic, they were broken into groups and got to know current SWS members.

Thanks to Steph Clarfield, I am able to share some terrific photos of the event!

Brandon and Jason Compete in National DECA Competition!

This past week, Juniors Brandon Behar and Jason Koty attended the DECA ICDC National Competition in Orlando. Accompanying the students was our DECA Advisor, Mrs. Kristen Malik. Brandon and Jason earned a spot at this National competition by winning 3rd place in the Sports and Entertainment Category at the New York State level.

The students joined an elite group of the DECA members from across the United States (and the world) who each earned a top spot from their state and category. These students were there to spar in a series of competitive events.

The competition was an amazing opportunity as well as a great learning experience for Jason and Brandon, who have already begun strategizing so that they can repeat and improve upon their success next year!

Thank you to Mrs. Malik for taking time out of her family’s vacation plans in order to accompany the students to the conference!

[Thanks to Mrs. Malik for the photos and the write-up!]

Wheatley Students Have Wonderful Experiences in Italy!

Is there a better way to spend spring vacation than to practice your Italian conversational skills in Italy? For 21 Wheatley students and their chaperones, the answer to that question was a resounding “no!”

As such, thanks to the commitment of three chaperones (Mrs. Susan Vasselman, Mrs. Michelle Gross and Willets Road’s Mrs. Rosa Chiarenza), 21 Wheatley students departed on Wednesday, 17 April, for eight wonderful days in Italy!

Students enjoyed beautiful weather and special times seeing the sights and talking to the locals as they visited Rome, Sorrento, Pompeii, Benevento, the Tremiti Islands, Vieste, Castel del  Monte in Andria, Altamura, Alberbello and Bari. Two years ago, Mrs. Vasselman led a different group of students on explorations of Italy’s west coast and Sicily; this trip offered an exciting experience on Italy’s east coast. Some of the students took advantage of the opportunity to swim in the Adriatic Sea!

Participants included: Dina Aldad, Alison Amarain, Juliana Anteri, Daniel Aquino Okeke, Pádraig Brady, Julia Braito, Jessica Calabrese, Alexandra Castiglie, Julia Dioguardi, Jenna Fey, Cecilia Jozef, Jacob Kaufman, Tyler Krause, Jason Liu, Amanda Molstad, Victoria Mora, Eric Ness, Temitope Oshodi, Olivia Palmieri, Daniel Piscopia and Camellia Ye.

Special thanks to Mrs. Vasselman, Mrs. Chiarenza and Mrs. Gross for taking the time away from their own families during the holidays and recess. Their absence from their own families afforded our students such a valuable real-world learning experience. It is sure to be a very special memory of their Wheatley years.

[Thanks to Mrs. Vasselman for some of the photos and Mrs. Anderson for some of the write-up! Thanks to Dina Aldad for the video summary!]





Wheatley Poets Recognized at Walt Whitman Annual Student Poetry Contest!

On Monday, 7 April, the award ceremony for the 33rd Annual Student Poetry Contest was held at the Walt Whitman Birthplace Association. This year’s ceremony was held during the year in which we are commemorating what would have been Whitman’s 200th birthday.

Wheatley English teacher Rick Wilson took his AP Literature students to receive the recognition announced last month. It was a beautiful ceremony with congratulatory tributes by NYS Senator James Gaughran, NYS Congressman Thomas Suozzi, NYS Assemblyman Steve Stern, Huntington Town Supervisor Chad Lupinacci, and Suffolk County Legislator Susan Berland.

Senior Tiffany Jiao was the Grand Champion in her category! Tiffany read her Whitmanesque “Sweet Poison” piece for the audience of 200.  Other winning Wheatley poets who were present included Huda Ayaz and Yusuf Meghji.  Not present but still honored were Jamie Ryan and Manan Shukla.  Mr. Wilson received the award for our AP class Grand Champion anthology “In the Eyes of an Eagle.”

Whitman Poet-in-Residence Jane Hirshfield was truly inspiring, reading not only from her own poetry but in calling out the importance of young poets in these challenging political times.  Tom Suozzi, too, was highly articulate as to poetry’s purpose in society and the significant accomplishments of our young people.

Congratulations to the students who were recognized during the ceremony. Thank you to Mr. Wilson for engaging his students in this contest celebrating one of our country’s literary treasures!

[Thanks to Mr. Wilson for the write-up and the photos!]