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Scholarship Honors Retired Teacher

The famous words from Forest Witcraft’s Within My Power are ringing true for retired Oyster Bay High School teacher Rosemarie Colvin: “100 years from now, it will not matter what my bank account was, the type of house I lived in or the kind of car I drove, but the world may be different because I was important in the life of a child.”

Colvin is affectionately remembered and beloved by scores of former students, one of whom attributes so much of her success to Colvin’s influence that she felt compelled to honor her in a very significant way. The Rosemarie Colvin Scholarship has been set up in perpetuity for first generation U.S. high school or college students attending Wharton or Wharton/UPenn, providing an opportunity for these students to attend college while honoring a teacher who made so many dreams possible for her students.

While Colvin was an ESL teacher at Oyster Bay High School, she acted as mentor and life coach for many of her students and is most fondly remembered for her unwavering dedication that went far beyond the classroom. Many of her students were recent immigrants who arrived in the US without much knowledge of English or American culture. They found in Colvin not only a teacher who would help them become proficient in English, but one that would expose them to the best of American culture.

One student who immigrated to the United States during middle school said, “We were new immigrants. We didn’t know much about the country at all. My parents were hardworking people, we tried to assimilate into the society, find our way around and make ends meet on a daily basis. She opened her home to us. She took us to our first Broadway show and many of us experienced our first Thanksgiving dinner at her house.”

The college application process can be grueling for high school students. For students with limited English, the process is all the more daunting. Many immigrants to the US are motivated and hardworking with parents who value education. Yet, as one student states, “it’s possible to get really lost here if you don’t have the proper support. Mrs. Colvin was a catalyst for me and many others, because of all of the support she provided."

Colvin not only helped her students with their applications, but she once drove a student down to the UPenn for an admissions interview.

“I didn’t think it was any big deal,” says Colvin. “But the admissions directors couldn’t get over the fact that a teacher from Long Island would spend the day driving a student to her interview. That’s how we do things in life. Small things that turn out to be big.”

Although she is retired from the school system, Colvin hasn’t stopped working. According to Adolfo Zepeda, programs coordinator of the Hispanic Cultural Center of Oyster Bay, “Rosemarie has been a huge supporter of our organization. She always has the time to help us review and write grants. Recently, she met with some high school students.” Colvin discussed their options for college and reviewed the financial aid procedures with them.

Luz Torres, board president of the cultural center, says, “She does everything for us. She writes the proposals, she goes to training, she helps with our programs, and is always willing to work for justice.”

And at 80 years old, Colvin is still opening her home to others. Most recently, she hosted 17 foreign exchange students so they could attend events in NYC.

“There are many unsung heroes in this society,” said one former student. “There are many other Rosemarie Colvins in the world and I would like all the teachers to know that they can make a difference in children’s lives and that is a beautiful thing.”

News

Serving Oyster Bay and the rest of Long Island since 1990, Periwinkles is an Oyster Bay business on Audrey Avenue that assists with event planning, staging and staffing and catering a multitude of different events. Periwinkles was started by Pat Spafford, who was encouraged to take her passion and make it a career.

 

“I was raising a family and doing this part-time,” said Spafford. “One of my clients encouraged me to make it full-time. Most of my clientele was from Oyster Bay so I settled here. I have a huge affection for the people and the place. It’s great that I have been successful here for so long.” 

On Sunday, Sept. 21, the only place to be for lovers of local music is the Homestead in Oyster Bay, where a full day of live music is planned at GlenFest featuring 25 different performances. The lineup includes big names like Richie Cannata to Sea Cliff mainstays Kris Rice and Chicken Head to up-and-comers like Matt Grabowski and Lisa Vetrone.

 

GlenFest is the brainchild of Dave Losee, 53, of Glen Cove, who plays in the Crosstown Blues Band.

 

“I had this idea for a festival years ago, and when I finally nailed down a date, people are coming out of the woodwork to be a part of it,” says Losee.


Sports

Former football coach and NFL player Bill Curry recently brought a wealth of experience, knowledge and history to a wide audience of student-athletes and coaches at Hofstra University for a lesson on diversity, tolerance and respect in high school athletics.

 

Director of the NYS PHSAA Sportsmanship Committee and Manhasset High School Athletic Director Jim Amen Jr. established the summit and invited Curry as keynote speaker.

Amen Jr. and Section VIII Executive Director Nina Van Erk introduced Curry to a crowd representing more than 37 local high schools.

Hard work paid off for local athletes Christine Grippo of Locust Valley, Kelly Pickard of Oyster Bay, Bernadette Winnubst of Locust Valley, Steven Quigley of Bayville, Catherine Soler of Oyster Bay, Maria Elinger of Oyster Bay, and Armand D’Amato of Oyster Bay Cove, each of whom won awards in a field of some of the best triathletes from all of Long Island and beyond in the 27th annual Runner’s Edge - Town of Oyster Bay Triathlon, held in and around Oyster Bay’s Theodore Roosevelt Memorial Park on Saturday morning, Aug. 23.

Grippo earned top honors in the women’s 30-34 age group with a time of 1 hour, 17 minutes, 36 seconds. Pickard (1:17:39) scored first among the women in the 35-39 age group. Winnubst scored in 1:38:48 to earn third place honors in the Masters Athena Weight Division. Quigley earned the second place award in the Masters Clydesdale Weight Division in 1:23:23. Soler (1:29:12) scored 5th among the women in the 20-24 age group. Ehlinger (1:39:23) was the 4th place award winner in the women’s 55-59 age group. D’Amato (1:42:44) earned top honors in the 70-74 age group.


Calendar

MSA Party - September 17

West Shore Rd. Update - September 18

Harbor Beach Cleanup - September 20


Columns

1959: The Year The Music Stopped Playing
Written by Michael A. Miller, mmillercolumn@gmail.com

The Eccentric Heiress Of ‘Empty Mansions’
Written by Mike Barry, MFBarry@optonline.net

Yellow Margarine And A Pitch For The Ages
Written by Michael A. Miller, mmillercolumn@gmail.com