Casey Coleman thought when he reached his decision to attend SUNY College at Cortland it was the final word on the matter after months of weighing the pros and cons of various schools. But then all of a sudden an opportunity to study at Stony Brook University presented itself and it was just too tempting for the Huntington High School senior to pass up.
“Stony Brook was originally my first choice,” Mr. Coleman said. “I loved the campus when I visited a couple of months ago. They also have one of the best physical therapy programs in New York, so it really caught my eye.”
Huntington senior Casey Coleman is headed to Stony Brook University
Mr. Coleman plans to pursue an academic major in biology and ultimately seek a career as a physical therapist. “I’ve decided to live on campus so I can get the full college experience,” he said. “Stony Brook has been my dream school since the start of picking colleges.”
Those who were at Washington Primary School when Mr. Coleman stepped off the bus for his first day of kindergarten can’t believe so many years have flown by that he is set to graduate this month and head off to college.
“Huntington does a great job preparing students for college,” Mr. Coleman said. “There are many classes, such as Advanced Placement courses, that prepare students for what they should expect in the future. The college office is also a huge help in the college process. With the help and knowledge that I have received from teachers and staff, I am ready and prepared for college.”
Mr. Coleman has a happy-go-lucky personality. He gets along well with everyone and rolls with the punches. Nothing gets him down for very long. He has a great sense of humor, too.
“For me, the most valuable courses would have to be AP Biology, AP Seminar and AP Research,” Mr. Coleman said. “These classes are all college level courses and have helped me so much. AP Biology has helped me learn so much more about my major than I would ever know. AP Seminar and AP Research helped me become a better public speaker and essay writer, which is going to be essential for college.”
The teenager also participated in a credit bearing internship during his senior year. “I was mentored at Washington Primary School by physical therapist Stephanie Kelly,” Mr. Coleman said. “It has been such a wonderful educational experience to work with her this year.”
The teenager keeps a rather low profile around the high school building. Mr. Coleman values his core set of friends and has a healthy amount of self-confidence. He loves going to school.
“My favorite activity over the past four years would be Relay For Life,” Mr. Coleman said. “Unfortunately, it came to an end and 2019 was the last year, but it was such a great experience. You get to raise money to fight cancer and spend time with your friends and favorite teachers.”
Always a good student, Mr. Coleman will graduate this month with an enviable academic record. He will be challenged intellectually at Stony Brook, but his Huntington teachers feel he is up to the task.
“I would tell the incoming freshmen to just get involved with anything you can,” Mr. Coleman said. “Whether it be a sport, club or other activity, it is a great way to acclimate yourself with new people and get to know them.”
The senior has done well in all of his classes and gained the respect of every teacher he’s worked with dating all the way back to kindergarten.
“I rely on my AP Seminar and AP Research teacher, Mrs. [Dianna] Cazzalino for a lot of support and feedback,” Mr. Coleman said. “She is truly one of my favorite teachers because she is always there when you need her and you can talk to her about anything, whether it is school related or not.”
While Stony Brook is a relatively short ride from Huntington, it will be an entirely different experience for Mr. Coleman, who will be studying on a campus with students from more than 100 countries and all 50 states. While he’s excited to be going to one of the top public research universities in the country, the teenager will miss the school community he has grown to love.
“The people make Huntington special,” Mr. Coleman said. “I have met some of the nicest and kindest people. My experience at Huntington has been unforgettable; I couldn’t imagine being anywhere else. I will miss my friends the most. This is a new chapter in our lives and it will be hard to say goodbye after spending the last four years of our lives together. I will always remember how much Huntington felt like home because of how hospitable everyone was.”