Dec 2, 2013
Meyer, Suozzi, English & Klein, P.C., has awarded scholarships to three Long Island veterans who served in Iraq and Afghanistan and are now enrolled at Nassau Community College.“It is incumbent upon the Long Island business community to assist our veterans as they transition into civilian life,” said Meyer Suozzi English & Klein, P.C. Managing Attorney, Lois Carter Schlissel. “It is essential that we help them complete their education by providing tuition assistance so that they can compete for jobs in this very difficult economic climate.” The Meyer Suozzi scholarship committee is chaired by A. Thomas Levin, chair of the firm's Local Government, Land Use Law and Environmental Compliance Practice and the Professional Responsibility Practice. About the scholarship recipients:Gregory Carlisle, a West Babylon resident grew up in Copiague and Amityville. He says his neighborhood was plagued by gangs and drug trafficking, but he promised himself that he would create a better life for himself. Corporal Carlisle served in both Iraq and Afghanistan, and upon his return to Long Island, enrolled at Nassau Community College. He is a business major and will pursue an accounting degree at St. John’s University. He plans on becoming a CPA. He also plans to pursue a master’s degree in education and a second master’s degree in counseling so that he can one day open a youth center that will provide a safe place for children to learn and stay off the streets. The center he says will prepare these youngsters for life and shape tomorrow’s leaders. Joshua Rivera is a resident of Massapequa. He graduated East Meadow High School in 2006 and served in the U.S. military from 2007- 2011. He served in Iraq from June of 2008 until June of 2009. Corporal Rivera spent the early years of his life in various foster homes in the New York City area. He was adopted at the age of 14. He says he is grateful to all those who cared for him and appreciates the variety of cultures, ethnic backgrounds and religions that he was exposed to. Rivera played football in high school and enrolled at Nassau Community College immediately after graduation, but soon realized he wanted more from his life and decided to enlist. While his adopted parents did not initially support his decision, he says they came to understand his strong desire to serve his nation, make a difference and give back to his community. Corporal Rivera hopes to pursue a career as a pediatric nurse. He says he loves children and someday hopes to have a large family of his own. Juana Quijano is a single mother of three children ranging in age from 7-10 years old. Corporal Quijano, a Garden City resident, served in the military from 2002 until 2012, including a tour of duty in Iraq from 2007-2008. Corporal Quijano says she is proud of her service to her country which she says made her mentally and physically stronger. She says that her time in uniform has taught her to be loyal, honest, brave and courageous no matter what the circumstances. She hopes to pursue a career as a clinical social worker, working with veterans and helping them to address the issues that shape and complicate their everyday lives. She would like to help them deal with relationship and personal or family problems which for many have been caused by PTSD and other ailments contracted while in the service. She says her helping her fellow veterans would create a sense of satisfaction because they need to understand that they are not alone.