Handy Hall Hosts “Breakfast With My Profession”
“For I know the plans I have for you … plans to proper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.” Jeremiah 29:11 Under the visionary leadership of Head Dean, Mr. Jaymie Pottinger, and his team, Handy Hall, Residence Hall for the Young Men of Distinction, sponsored and hosted the inaugural “Breakfast With My Profession.”
The recreational room of Handy Hall was transformed into a formal banquet hall having tables adorned with fine linen and accessorized with the finest china and cutlery. A wide assortment of delicacies complemented by a full course meal prepared by Mr. and Mrs. Keldo (parents) and Mrs. Chauna-Kaye Pottinger (wife of Dean Jaymie Pottinger). Several other parents and supporters (Mr. and Mrs. Goulding, Mr. and Mrs. Burke, Mr. and Mrs. Thaw, Mr. and Mrs. Williams, Mr. Williams, Mrs. Joseph, and Ms. Poole) lent their assistance in one form or another to complete the transformation and preparation for this grand occasion.
Thirty-nine young men who are members of the classes of 2014 and 2015, sat with rapt, disciplined and focused attention as Dr. Naeem Newman, keynote speaker, shared the following vital information about the ten myths about choosing a career: Choosing a career is simple, A career counselor can tell me what occupation to choose, I can’t make a living from my hobby, etc. He also shared the four steps in choosing a career: SELF—gather information about yourself, OPTIONS—explore occupations in which you are interested, MATCH—do your goals match your occupation, and ACTION—Develop the steps you need to take in order to reach your goal. Dr. Newman is a Surgical Oncologist, specializing in Gastrointestinal Cancer. He is the proud father of Rhiane Jones, member of the class of 2014.
After the enjoyment of the delectable meal, experts from a wide range of occupations and careers inspired the young men to aspire to heights yet unattained. Each young man was able to engage in meaningful discussions relative to his intended career path on a individual basis with: pastors, dentists, lawyers, nurses, doctors, media specialists, social workers, and pharmacists. The majority of the presenters were parents of either past and/or present students and all willingly gave of their time, service, and expertise.
The event, by God’s grace, achieved its objectives and served as a launching pad for successful career paths for the young men in attendance. Robert Rucker, class of 2015, shared his scholarly perspective by stating: “It was an amazing opportunity for the young men of Handy Hall to obtain information on a one-on-one basis from people who are succeeding in some of the fields of study that we are planning to enter. We realize that many African American students rarely get the opportunity to meet and talk with other African American people who are not only doing what they aspire to be, but are already experiencing success in their chosen careers. This is great for us because it provides us with successful role models.”
Students and presenters alike sanctioned the event and the experience with glowing accolades and hailed it as one that must be repeated. In appreciation for writing upon the pages of each young man’s future, each presenter received a framed portrait of the group of Young Men of Distinction whose lives they had forever impacted.
Dean Pottinger’s foresight has him already planning to make this an annual event and is currently engaging in conversions that will take this program beyond the confines of Pine Forge Academy.
The presenters for this premier occasion were:
Dr. Frank Aroh (Pharmacist) – Clinical Pharmacy Manager Anesthesiology & Surgical Services, Montefiore Medical Center, Bronx, New York
Mrs. Dianne Aroh (Nurse) – Executive Vice President, Chief Nursing and Patient Care Officer at Hackensack University Medical Center
Dr. Naeem Newman (Surgical Oncologist) – Anne Arundel Medical Center in Annapolis, Maryland
Dr. Marcellus Robinson (Pastor) – Vice President for Administration, Allegheny East Conference of SDA
Mrs. Chereece Keldo (Social Worker) – Clinical Social Worker- State of Connecticut
Dr. Wisly Augustin, MD (Ophthalmologist) – Staff Physician Ophthalmology Department Preferred Health Partners, Brooklyn, NY
Mrs. Beryl Williams-Augustin (Communication) – Vice President of Marketing, Communications and Development -Wyckoff Heights Medical Center Brooklyn, NY
Mr. Howard H. Brown, Esq. (Lawyer) – CEO, Howard Brown Law Practice
Frank E. Legette III (Media & Production) – CEO, HIStory INNERtainment Studios
Robert Patterson Jr. (Accountant) – Under Treasurer, Allegheny East Conference of SDA
Dr. Diedra Alston (Dentist) – CEO, Douglassville Family Dental