Matthew Rodriquez is hoping to dabble in a little bit of everything in college. The Huntington High School senior is headed to Rochester Institute of Technology, which the teenager is convinced offers him a great opportunity for a splendid education, both in and out of the classroom.
“I choose this college because of its National Technical Institute for Deaf program, which will support me academically,” Mr. Rodriquez said. “I want to go to this school because it has great academics, sports, clubs and also great supports.”
Huntington senior Matthew Rodriquez is headed to Rochester Institute of Technology.
The senior earlier considered Pace University, St. John’s University, Gallaudet University and Suffolk Community College. RIT offered him a partial scholarship.
“Founded in 1829, Rochester Institute of Technology is a diverse and collaborative community of engaged, socially conscious and intellectually curious minds,” according to the university’s website. “Through creativity and innovation and an intentional blending of technology, the arts and design, we provide exceptional individuals with a wide range of academic opportunities, including a leading research program and an internationally recognized education for deaf and hard-of-hearing students.”
Mr. Rodriquez is interested in studying business and technology. He also plans on getting involved in the soccer and dance clubs. The teenager is interested in sports marketing, but he is flexible about what he wants to study and ultimately pursue as a career.
“The National Technical Institute for the Deaf is one of the nine colleges of Rochester Institute of Technology,” according to the college website. “More than 15,000 undergraduate students from around the world, including more than 1,100 who are deaf or hard of hearing, come to campus every year to take advantage of the benefits of an RIT/NTID education. The opportunities for deaf and hard-of-hearing students are unmatched by any university in the world. Career-focused programs that reflect the needs of today’s employers, work experience gained through the university’s cooperative education program, faculty who specialize in educating deaf and hard-of-hearing students, outstanding graduation and job placement rates, and unparalleled access and support services all set RIT/NTID apart.”
Mr. Rodriquez is grateful for all the help he has received along the way on the road to graduation this month.
“My all-time favorite teachers are Ms. [Becky] Arlin, Ms. [Kathleen] Sambour, Ms. [Jennifer] Rommel and Ms. [Maureen] Yostpille,” Mr. Rodriquez said. “Those teachers are my favorites because they impacted my life and truly helped me throughout the years and I made memories with them. They are the best because they support and encourage me in academics. They know that I can do it with determination and passion.”
The teenager got his start in the district at Washington Primary School. “What I will always remember about Huntington is that I made so many friends that have supported me through the years and even teachers, too,” Mr. Rodriquez said. “I was involved in the Latino Heritage Club, which teaches other people how to dance. I had a lot of fun in Huntington that I will never forget the rest of my life.”