Student Testimonials & Accomplishments - Chemistry Department

Lok Yung

“As a new immigrant, my educational experience at QCC was excellent. The smaller class size and the professor’s teaching method provoked my critical thinking skill and encouraged my participation in the class. This atmosphere motivated me to ask more questions and brought more input to the subject. Personally I had financially a hard time in continuing my education due to my family matters. There is no doubt that I would not have a chance to study at the Cooper Union if it were not for the excellent teaching, support and advice that were provided by QCC faculties, especially Professor Paris Svoronos. In addition, taking Organic Chemistry and General Chemistry at QCC allowed me to successfully score highly in the MCAT examinations and gained admission into medical school. Queensborough gave me an opportunity to fulfill my educational desire.”

Medical School of Osteopathic Medicine 2005 graduate; Cooper Union for the Advancement of Science and Art Master of Chemical Engineering, May 2003; Bachelor of Chemical Engineering, May 2002; 2003 United States Achievement Academy Collegiate All-American Scholar and National Collegiate Engineering Awards

Marcella Powell

“Having the opportunity to be a member of the Queensborough student body was a great experience. The most enriching one however, was my participation in the Honors program. One of the most unique and helpful aspects of Honors classes are their small sizes, which create an intimate environment where everyone has the opportunity to work together as a team and meet new people. I had this experience especially in the chemistry department where I registered for CH-120/121, CH-151, CH-152 and CH-902/903 for a total of 17 hours. Many of the students that I met came from different cultural backgrounds and getting to know them better was a learning experience in itself. Through this program I was able to conduct multiple research projects, one at Queensborough and one at Queens College, and to present my results at various undergraduate symposiums in New York State. Overall, the Honors program has provided me with a strong foundation of skills and the discipline necessary for my success at Stony Brook University.”

SUNY-Stony Brook, Biochemistry Senior

Nilda I. Montes

“Having been at both St. John’s University and Hunter College before coming to Queensborough, I immediately noticed the difference, especially in the Chemistry Department. I was able to appreciate the smaller class sizes, the resources and the fact that professors actually did care. The smaller classes were not about competition since we worked as a family and helped each other. I also had a chance to work with the faculty and appreciate all the work they put in to ensure that we came out of QCC ready for senior colleges.
Participating in research was another great experience. I worked alongside Dr. Svoronos and Mr. Pedro Irigoyen, as well as at the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) in Jamaica. I was the only person that had two oral presentations at the 52 nd Undergraduate Research Symposium of the American Chemical Society- New York section. It was hard work but the experience was great and worth it.
The workload at York where I currently am is heavy, however the skills I got at QCC have a positive impact on my study habits. I would recommend anyone to take courses in the chemistry department as well as getting involved with research. “

2006 Graduat ing student, York College, Physician Assistant Program

Zeba Izhar

“My experience with the Chemistry Department has been extremely constructive. If you need any help knock at the Chemistry Department office door and you will be greeted with care. I went through difficult days but I also got the self-confidence I needed by doing PLTL workshops to the students of the classes I had just completed. Under the guidance of Dr. Christopher Massone I conducted research and presented my results at the 52 nd Undergraduate Research Symposium of the American Chemical Society- New York section. I am currently a junior in biochemistry hoping to go to medical school.”

SUNY-Stony Brook, Junior

Yu Yu Kyaw

“I am currently in my third year in the Pharm D. Program at St Johns' University. I first went to Queensborough Community College where I had an extremely good foundation in chemistry by taking all three Honors classes offered, in Introductory Chemistry, General Chemistry I as well as General Chemistry II. I enjoyed the challenge but also appreciated the concern and effort the faculty made in developing me as a future pharmacist.”

Doctor of Pharmacy, May 2008 (St. John’s University)

Yadirez Rodriguez

“ I am currently a pre-med biology major at Stony Brook University. I took all my pre-med courses at Queenborough Community College from where I graduated in 2004. I cherish all my experiences at Queenborough, especially those I encountered in the Chemistry Department, which was like my second home. The classes I took there helped me organize myself, set my priorities straight and started making me think as a scientist. I often struggled in these classes, but the knowledge and experiences that I got from that classroom were worth the time and the effort. I found out that I could make research presentations in conferences and could compete in the American Chemical Society Chemistry Challenge. Without the chemistry department professors’ confidence in me, and their great ability to enhance my abilities I would not be where I am now.”

SUNY- Stony Brook Junior

Thayparan Balakumar

When I began my studies at QCC, I did not know what major I wanted to pursue. Everything changed however after I took my inorganic and organic chemistry classes. The class environment was so friendly and small compared to that of a four-year institution, so I easily got my professors’ attention. Not only they were competent instructors, they also understood my potential and gave me the right advice to enrich my life in the future. As a student at Queensborough, I conducted research in synthetic Organic chemistry and got the honor of presenting it in national and regional level conferences. Students usually complain that the Biochemistry course in a four-year institution is hard. However it was relatively easy for me because of the good background in organic chemistry when I had at Queensborough.

Queens College, Biology/Biochemistry Senior

Bernardine Lopez

When I decided to start a new career, I needed to go back to college and retake some classes. It had been some time since I had been in an undergraduate class, but choosing Queensborough Community College was one of the best choices I could have made. Not only was Dr. Svoronos one of the best Organic Chemistry professors I could have, the fellow students accepted me as one of their own. It was a great experience and allowed the fulfillment of my dream.

A Graduate student at John Jay College-CUNY

Mercedes Carpanay

I started my college career thinking about a scientific career. However I changed my mind and I will be graduating this year with a B.A. in Economics. In the chemistry department at Queensborough Community College I have encountered the pleasant environment, the concerned professors and the intensity that makes it a good quality institution.

York College, Senior

Janet Vanessian

"As a graduate of a private university and an independent student at Queensborough Community College, I have experienced academia at various levels, and I can honestly say that my experience at Queensborough exceeded any/all expectations. My education there, particularly in the Chemistry Department, prepared me for the long, arduous journey that led to my earning a health sciences degree. The small class size and individual faculty attention fostered an environment for learning that is essential to learning science. The weekend workshops, tutorials and Chemistry seminars make learning an integral part of every day. The exceptional instructors motivate the students and expose them to various research and educational opportunities not offered anywhere else. The proof is in the pudding - the students that graduate and continue to become successful physician assistants and doctors are a testament to the superior education that you receive at QCC. As a private university graduate, my education at QCC was beyond comparable... even superior! "
RPA-C, NYIT Graduate

Tabassum Shakeel

"I spent two years of my post-high school education at Queensborough. During this period, I had a truly great experience in my chemistry classes and was able to get a comprehensive knowledge of all topics, including those in Organic Chemistry. It is the low student-to-faculty ratio in every class that helped me stay in touch with my professors, not only during class but also outside it. Being in a four-year program I can testify to the faculty knowledge and ability and the extra individual care that made Queensborough a valuable part of my college education. "

St. John’s University, Biochemistry

Berman Tsun

"Queensborough opened a door of opportunities for me. The classes are much smaller than those in the four-year colleges. This helps make learning both interactive and lively. My experience and education at Queensborough transformed me from an average student into a national scholar. This would not have occurred, had I not taken Professor Paris Svoronos' General and Organic Chemistry classes. This experience has left an indelible impression in my mind. "

One of the only two community college students to earn the nationally prestigious Barry Goldwater scholarship in 2001 and a graduate of SUNY-Binghamton in Chemistry

Christiane Toussaint

"During my stay at Queensborough Community College, I had some great experiences and opportunities. I was fortunate to be in small classes where I could ask questions, bring my input to the subject and be motivated by my professors who encourage class participation. I also had the opportunities to participate in several research internships and make oral presentations in conferences along with undergraduates from four-year colleges. Being in this two year college connected my learning with the direct attention of my professors and mentors. We were also encouraged to consider small study groups with classmates."
a CUNY-City College senior who was a participant at the Bio-Prep program in Stony Brook (summer 2000), AMP research program (2000-01), the 49th American Chemical Society Symposium for Undergraduate Research (May 2001), Downstate Biology Summer Internship (summer 2001) and the 50th American Chemical Society Symposium in May 2002.

Vincent A. Graffeo

"There is no question that I would not have been a successful medical student now, if it were not for the excellent teaching, support and advice that… was provided [to me at Queensborough]… As a medical student I often reached back to basic concepts taught… to elucidate and understand the basic science underlying the clinical disorders in my patients. In my medical school interviews people were impressed at the professional level of the program at Queensborough that include leading student problem solving groups and attending professional American Chemical Society meetings."

a medical doctor and a graduate of the Medical College of Wisconsin

Hang Kyu Park

"I experienced great intellectual growth at Queensborough Community College, especially in the Organic Chemistry class. The key points that were taught by the excellent professor I had, as well as the reinforcement I got by his regular testing, prepared me for the advanced graduate courses in biochemistry I later took at Queens College. In addition I was given individual attention and the opportunity to discuss career opportunities with Dr. Paris Svoronos who gave me excellent advice and went out of his way to assist in my acceptance to a graduate program.”

a B.S. summa cum laude graduate from Queens College and a medical doctor from SUNY-Buffalo

Laura Pena-Jones

"The importance of gaining confidence in your abilities as a young college student cannot be over-emphasized. When I first came to Queensborough Community College, I had no ability to imagine a career combining law and science. Through the excellent preparation from my professors in the Chemistry Department I succeeded in obtaining multiple degrees from four different institutions."

an A.S. from Queensborough Community College, a B.S. from the State University of New York College of Environmental Science and Forestry (SUNY-ESF), an M.S. from Duke University in Environmental Management and a Juris Doctor from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.

Herman Botero

"Everyone knows that the toughest class required for entrance into any medical school is the dreaded Organic Chemistry course. Queensborough offers well-respected academic instructors and the smaller class size that enable students to succeed in such important courses. The Chemistry Department at Queensborough provided me with the tools necessary to achieve good scores on the MCATs. Today, as a medical doctor, I am very thankful for the strong foundation and education I received at Queensborough Community College"
a medical doctor and a graduate of the New York College of Osteopathic Medicine (2004)

Zareen Parvez

"I had a wonderful experience at Queensborough Community College, not just with the friends and classmates but also with the faculty and advisors. The academic background my Queensborough professors gave me, prepared me to handle the huge classes and individual learning techniques of SUNY-Stony Brook. The professors did more than what was required of them and I enjoyed all my classes in the sciences including the very difficult Organic Chemistry two-course sequence. I consider myself lucky to have started my career at Queensborough."

a Physician Assistant Program graduate of SUNY-Stony Brook and an employee of the surgery department at Queens Hospital

Martha Peppas

"My initial fear that that the science classes taught at Queensborough were inferior to those taught at a four-year college turned out to be false. Queensborough’s friendly environment, its supportive professors and the small classes, all provided me with the confidence to do my best and persevere in every situation, no matter how hard. The ability of the faculty to work with my strengths and help me identify ways to overcome or minimize my weaknesses led me to do well in classes and conduct peer workshops in organic chemistry. As far as I know very few undergraduate students get to attend professional American Chemical Society seminars and even present original research results at regional and national chemical conferences.”

a biochemistry graduate of Queens College who also had an internship at the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) in Jamaica, Queens (2002) and a current research assistant at Cornel Medical Center.

Sunyoung Park

"My experience at Queensborough was very satisfying. The small class size allowed the professors to know us personally and gave the students the opportunity to ask questions during the class. The regular testing made us study on a daily basis and developed the knowledge of the course’s basic principles. The faculty were able to give us better and more detailed recommendation letters because of how well they knew us. Finally, I had the opportunity to do research and make an oral presentation at the 49th Undergraduate Research Symposium of the American Chemical Society at Pace University last year.”

a clinical lab science senior at SUNY-Stony Brook and a South Nassau Community Hospital microbiology lab employee.

Janet Gonzalez

“Queensborough revitalized my commitment to education through the vision and leadership of the Chemistry and Biology Department faculty, and in particular the great support and teaching skills of the upper chemistry class professors. It provided me with a strong background that I needed in order to pursue my doctorate. The college gave me access to the realization of my educational potential.

BS magna cum laude graduate of City College and a current CUNY-Graduate Center doctoral student in Biochemistry

Joel Goldenberg

“Taking Organic Chemistry at QCC allowed me to successfully score high on the DATs and gain admission into New York University College of Dentistry. Unlike the university where I earned my Bachelor of Science degree, Organic Chemistry at Queensborough was not taught as a "weed-out" class. Without a doubt, the greatest asset of the course, was the instructor who has a sincere interest in the future of his students. The course was extremely well organized in a progression, which facilitated learning this difficult subject. The intimate class size meant that individual attention could easily be gotten.”

a graduate of New York University Dental School and a practicing dentist

James Wong

"My experience at QCC was great! I have taken classes at universities and did not have as much individual attention from my instructors. You can tell that the chemistry instructors at Queensborough really care because they are there for you and genuinely help you for the sake of learning-though it can be "tough love" at times. In addition to the great teaching, the classroom becomes a great learning environment and the information gained becomes very applicable to the future of our careers. This optimizes every aspect of being a college student!"

a New York Chiropractic College graduate and a current chiropractor.

Junwoong Hwang

“My days at Queensborough were nothing less than extraordinary. I discovered that the faculty members of the chemistry department were the cornerstone of my academic success. Doing research is an unusual luxury for community college students. Yet, I was encouraged to conduct computational chemistry under Dr. Gao which I orally presented at the 52nd Undergraduate Research Symposium of the American Chemical Society-New York section in May 2004. Through their guidance I made third place in the All-USA Today academic team competition and succeeded in getting accepted to both Cornell and Johns Hopkins University.”

a Junior pre-med Biochemistry Major at Cornell University

Julia Christodoulou

“As a recent graduate of Queensborough Community College, I want to let my fellow students, how important the nurturing I received from this college, and especially the Chemistry Department, has been. With faculty such as Dr. Svoronos serving as a teacher/mentor/father figure, we, as students, do not know how lucky we are to have such an intensive guidance in our first crucial steps as growing scientists. My own love and appreciation for chemistry developed within the walls of that fourth floor in the Science Building, and even though it has been a year since my departure, the knowledge I took with me will carry me throughout my career. The solid foundation that the chemistry faculty instilled inside me has given me the confidence to pursue all that I want within the realm of the natural sciences. “

Queens College, Junior

Jennifer West

“Queensborough Community College is the foundation on which I will build my future. In small class environments, especially the Honors classes in Chemistry and Mathematics, I was challenged to excel beyond my own expectations. I received my A.S. in June 2003 from Queensborough. I am currently attending SUNY Stony Brook while working in a medical billing office. I am in the process of applying to Bryant University where I will major in applied actuarial mathematics.”

SUNY-Stony Brook, Junior

Campus Cultural Centers

Kupferberg Holocaust Center exterior lit up at nightOpens in a new window
Kupferberg Holocaust Center Opens in a new window

The KHC uses the lessons of the Holocaust to educate current and future generations about the ramifications of unbridled prejudice, racism and stereotyping.

Russian Ballet performing at the Queensborough Performing Arts CenterOpens in a new window
QPAC: Performing Arts CenterOpens in a new window

QPAC is an invaluable entertainment company in this region with a growing national reputation. The arts at QPAC continues to play a vital role in transforming lives and building stronger communities.

Queensborough Art Gallery exterior in the afternoonOpens in a new window
QCC Art Gallery

The QCC Art Gallery of the City University of New York is a vital educational and cultural resource for Queensborough Community College, the Borough of Queens and the surrounding communities.