On Monday February 4, SUNY Maritime College welcomed to campus Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, recently elected to New York’s 14th Congressional district, which includes portions of the Bronx including SUNY Maritime College, and Queens.
“We were extremely pleased and honored that Rep. Ocasio-Cortez visited within weeks of her election to the House of Representatives. She was eager to learn about the College and to talk with students,” said Rear Admiral Michael A. Alfultis, President of SUNY Maritime College. Rep. Ocasio-Cortez listened intently as students shared their experiences about Summer Sea Term and other professional internship programs.
“It is vital that the College have a strong working relationship with our Congressional representative. Federal support for our important Merchant Marine credentialing programs, including support for Empire State VI and our new National Security Multi-Mission Vessel (NSMV) to replace Empire State VI, is wholly dependent upon federal support,”, said RADM Alfultis. He was also pleased to point out that the College consistently ranks among the top four-year institutions in the nation for graduates’ salary potential, according to PayScale.
Rep. Ocasio-Cortez heard about the College’s expanded workforce development initiatives for the Bronx and New York City communities, including Its K-12 outreach programs. She met with Capt. Constansa (Connie) Torrejon ’17, who selected SUNY Maritime College to pursue a degree in marine transportation. After completing her degree and earning her merchant mariner license, Connie rose quickly to the rank of captain with the New York City Ferry.
Rep. Ocasio-Cortez also met in the Academic Success Center with students from Puerto Rico, students who aided in the Puerto Rico hurricane relief recovery efforts during summer 2018, with representatives from Maritime’s Women on the Water club and with leaders of the Regiment of Cadets.