June Issue - # 9 - Happy Summer!

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Joanne Scordo was honored on May 31st at the Sheraton Crossroads in Mahwah by the Bergen County School Counselor Association at their Annual Awards dinner as Guidance Secretary of the Year. The entire School Counseling Department was on hand for this event. Joanne was recognized for her professionalism, positive attitude, and caring support of BCA students and families. - Ken Zurich

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IAG (Investment Analysis Group)

Inspired by the New York University’s Stern School of Business’ own IAG, the BCA Investment Analysis Group was founded in 2015 with the purpose of teaching effective investment strategies in the stock market. Originally advised by Mr. Schwimmer and currently by Mr. Gutierrez, the club works closely with both industry professionals. As BCA’s first investment club, IAG is comprised of over twenty members who attend weekly meetings. Dedicated to teaching and simulating a real investment group, the club chooses to offer titles rather than leadership positions. From junior analysts to portfolio managers, members partake in an annual investment competition held by the University of Pennsylvania’s Wharton School of Business through their Online Trading and Investment Simulator (OTIS). In their founding year, the club’s team of nine students placed in the top 50 teams out of the nearly 400 global competitors. During the competition offseason, members share trades in the club’s private investment league at weekly meetings. In the future, the club hopes to create an investment council, where students will have an opportunity to invest funds from BCA Mart in the market. - Winston Lau


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Several BCA teachers came to Trumpets Jazz Club to support the students and music program. The Jazz Band performed a full dinner show, awarded door prizes, and featured the BCA Songwriter Contest winner. This event is always free to BCA faculty, so join us in 2018! - Michael Lemma


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CERT is a national program of volunteers trained in emergency readiness and response, sponsored by the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA). In this project BCA students were given an opportunity achieve Bergen County CERT certification. CERT educates individuals about disaster preparedness for hazards that may impact their area and trains them in basic disaster response skills, such as fire safety, light search and rescue, team organization, and disaster medical operations. Using training learned in the classroom and during exercises, CERT volunteers can assist others in their community following a disaster when professional responders are not immediately available to help. CERT volunteers are also encouraged to support emergency response agencies by taking an active role in their own towns. Congratulations to Ev Rios and her students for engaging is such a meaningful project.


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On May 25th, our students were exposed to varied career options early in their academic careers, alumni reconnected with us and got even more excited about staying involved in BCA, and partners such as Englewood Hospital and Bloomberg became even more committed, and new internships may be in the future. Overall Career Day was a great morning for our community! We hosted 200 mentor sessions and overall the feedback from the students and mentors was beyond positive. We look forward to continuing to make this experience a great one for our students and mentors in the future. - Michelle Pinke


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Senior Experience Presentations

This year's Senior Experience Exhibitions were held on June 1st. All Seniors presented their years work to both underclassman, mentors and additional guests. The internship presentations included arenas such as finance, politics, culinary, fashion, medical, computer technology and so much more. Many congratulations to Heather Lawler for putting together another successful event.


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This four panel installation was designed and created by National Art Honor Society students from Bergen County Academies in Hackensack under the tutelage of their teacher, JoAnn Onnembo, in honor of the National Parks 100th Birthday Celebration. The yearlong project included historical, anthropological and cultural research with the conceptual design idea that “we, as diverse individuals, become an integral part of a new fabric we call home.” Based on their research, students created charcoal portraits of what they imagined people of various cultural backgrounds may have looked like during times of the great migration and passage through Ellis Island. Images were developed, grouped, assembled, and placed within a newly woven “quilt.” The brief title statements recognize and respect individualities, unify and support the concept, and validate our contribution as part of the whole… a fabric that becomes stronger and more vibrant because we unite as one.

Student Artists

“I AM ME” Sarah Vargas, David Jansen, Alexandra Schwartz

“I AM YOU” Dana Chou, Gina Chun, Ashley Lee

“YOU ARE ME” Renee Aliko, Maansi Srivistava, Julia Fish

“WE ARE US” Jamie Noor, Yubin Lee, Alexandra Gutierrez


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Relay for Life

This year's Relay for Life event was held on June 9th and was attended by BCA faculty, staff, students and families as well as many survivors. Thank you to Christine Wallace and her student committee who raised more than $30,000 for the American Cancer Society and who organized such an amazing event. A thank you also goes out to Christine Ogden for sharing her amazing story.


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Max was a student of the Academy for Culinary Arts and Hotel Administration and graduated in 2015. Max was President of the Student Council and a member of SPARK. Max not only competed in BCA’s Chocolate Competition and in SkillsUSA, but also on Chopped in “Teen Tournament” during his junior year of high school. During his freshman year of college, Max returned on Chopped and won first place and donated the $10,000 to Memorial Sloan-Kettering Hospital. For his Senior Experience, Max worked in the kitchen of Gramercy Tavern, a one-Michelin star restaurant voted most popular in NYC by Zagat in 2015.

Max currently attends Cornell’s School of Hotel Administration. He is a teaching assistant for a culinary class, an ambassador for the School of Hotel Administration, and an member of the Cornell Hillel community. Max also worked with the Union Square Hospitality Group at Untitled at the Whitney Museum in 2015. In 2016, he worked in the dining room of Eleven Madison Square Park, a three-Michelin star restaurant that recently topped the list of the World’s Best Restaurants in 2017.

This summer, Max plans to work at Related Companies, a prominent commercial development firm, on developing Hudson Yards in New York. In the future, Max plans to continue working in the culinary food industry and explore purchasing, developing, and owning properties. He aspires to create his own food hospitality group in the future

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Mitchell Gouzenko – ABF (Academy for the Business and Finance) 2013

Mitchell graduated from the Academy for Business and Finance in 2013. He is now a senior at Columbia University's School of Engineering and Applied Sciences. Back in high school, Mitchell was a Captain of the tennis team, a co-founder of the BCA School Store, and a regular DECA competitor.

Mitchell took a rather winding path in college, switching his major from Financial Engineering to Physics to Applied Math, before finally settling on Computer Science. His academic interests include operating systems, malware analysis, cybersecurity, and software systems engineering.

At Columbia, Mitchell is part of the CU Financial Engineering Club. He is also a Resident Advisor and teaching assistant for Operating Systems. In his free time, Mitchell enjoys training Brazilian Jiu Jitsu with Columbia's BJJ team, running in Central Park, and tracking down cool food spots in NYC with his girlfriend, Jasmine.

After graduation, Mitchell will work for Google NYC as a software engineer on a storage infrastructure team. He feels nostalgic that college will be over so soon, but excited to start a new chapter of his life. Mitchell remembers his high school days fondly. He misses Mr. Zhang, Mr. Kaser, and Mr. Schwimmer, and will always be proud of the teachers and students of BCA.


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Victor Truscelli - Where is he now?

It's been almost five years since my retirement from BCA, and I can't say that I've slowed down very much. Some folks may remember that my house was devastated by the tornadoes that roared through the south in 2011, so I've spent a great deal of time rebuilding and adjusting to a new home. There doesn't seem to be an end to the work, but I've managed to find time to relax, travel a bit, and occupy my time with a few

meaningful activities.

I am still very involved with the marching band programs in the area, where I serve as a designer and choreographer for a few of the local high school groups. It is a hobby that has grown into an almost full-time job. I'm currently on the Executive Board for the East Tennessee Performing Arts Association, where I serve as an event coordinator and educator for teams and judges. I am also active as a volunteer in the Great Smoky Mountains National Park, where I help to maintain historic buildings and landmarks. A few years ago, some friends and I started a hive for bees on my property, and the venture has grown into a big production. We now have eleven hives that are thriving, and last year produced over 400 pounds of pure honey, which I share with family and friends and occasionally sell at the local farmer's market.

My dear mother will be turning 91 this year and continues to live on her own with the help of family and friends. Her home is about an hour away and I visit as often as I can. My concern for her has kept me from traveling for extended periods. I haven't been back to New Jersey since my retirement!

Living in a peaceful cove on a beautiful lake has it's perks. Winters can be harsh, but in the warm weather it's like being on vacation. I truly enjoy boating, fishing, and just relaxing with friends. Retired life is great...but I surely do miss my friends and comrades from BCA. I try to keep up with what is going on up there via the web, and enjoy occasionally hear from former students and colleagues. Those who have visited will surely tell you that East Tennessee is a beautiful area with lots of fun things to do. I encourage everyone to visit!


I hope to continue to bring you information about what is happening in and around our school. I hope you enjoyed the first year of the BCA UPDATES newsletter