York Joins American Airlines' 'Pink' Initiative

Breast Cancer Awareness Month has been a busy one for students in the CUNY Aviation Institute at York College as individual students and members of the Women in Aviation Club, lent their support to breast cancer awareness.
York Joins American Airlines' 'Pink' Initiative

Mark Najarian (second from left) American Airlines General Manager at JFK; and uniformed ticket agents, joined Mondell Sealy (third from left) and York students, Madhuri Seoupaul and Edgar Sierra (far left) at “Gate 3.”

First, American Airlines had a healthy competition going on at its gates – literally. The aviation giant recently offered up gate space to special organizations, interested in making a decorative statement in support of Breast Cancer Awareness Month (October). York College got the generous offer from David S. Lombard, manager, Alliances JFK at American Airlines, Edgar Sierra, a summer intern from York who still frequents the Airline’s JFK terminal as a volunteer.

Sierra, an Aviation Management major at the CUNY Aviation Institute at York College, recently spent three months as a paid intern doing quality control for “premium customers.” He was so smitten with the experience he has decided to become a volunteer for the Airline’s community service projects whenever possible. It was to this end that Mr. Lombard asked him if York would be interested in participating in the Airline’s “Passionately Pink Day.”

The Passionately Pink project raises awareness and funds for the Susan G. Komen for the Cure; and Sierra jumped at the opportunity to get the York name in front of thousands of passengers passing through American Airlines’ Terminal. York was assigned Gate 3 for decorating.

On Friday morning, October 14, Sierra, accompanied by Mondell Sealy, York’s director of Development and Alumni Affairs; and Aviation majors, Madhuri Seoupaul, Jeffrey Feliciano and Jayson Remeche, decorated the gate. Feliciano and Remeche were assigned to fundraising right there in the terminal and Madhuri was later dispatched to LaGuardia Airport where she volunteered as well. The students enjoyed supporting a worthy cause in this manner.

“I thank Mr. Lombard for giving York College its own gate,” said Sierra, a senior who considers Lombard a mentor. “I am forever thankful to him for giving us this opportunity.” It was a priceless opportunity for York.

“I would like to thank Mr. Lombard and American Airlines for their thoughtful support of York and our students,” said Dr. Marcia V. Keizs, president of York College. “We were privileged to accept the invitation to participate in the breast cancer awareness initiative; and we applaud American Airlines for its remarkable corporate citizenship.”

On short notice, York did not win the “best dressed gate” award. But it was a great opportunity to call awareness to an insidious disease while promoting the College at no cost. Meanwhile the Women in Aviation Club, York College Chapter, joined the national chapter in Central Park for the “Making Strides Against Breast Cancer” walk on Sunday, October 16th.

York College Aviation majors line up to march for breast cancer awareness.

York College Aviation majors line up to march for breast cancer awareness.  

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