Let's take a short step back. During the years that I
was in the National Guard, I was also working in the defense industry. I
began working at a firm called Rodale Electronics in Garden City, NY
where I was assigned to the quality control department. My training in
electrical technology and machine shop were both indispensable, and made
my chances for advancement much greater.
During the time I was at Rodale, I had many chances to
work in many capacities, and functioned with all of the departments -
shipping & receiving, mechanical and electrical quality control,
production testing, design & drafting, and after about one year was
promoted to the level of engineering technician in the R&D lab. The
six months which I spent in basic training were actually during the time
I was employed at Rodale, and I remained at Rodale for a total of 3-1/2
My next job was with PRD Electronics in Syosset, NY
where I was classified as an engineering aide, and worked with Research
and Development Engineers to test and troubleshoot equipment prior to
it's being released for production. This job was during a 1-1/2 year
period thru August of 1970.
While at PRD, I was told by my father, many years an
administrator in the New York City schools, that they were looking for
teachers of trades and industrial arts, and had opened a new employment
window to find the needed personnel. With just over five years of
industry-based experience, I took the necessary exams and, in September
1970, began what has been a long journey in the education field.
Having had such diversified training and experience, I
was able to teach all of the "shops" whenever needed. My assignments
took me from Brandeis HS in Manhattan (3 years) to Springfield Gardens
HS (2 years) to Newtown HS (1 year) to Martin Luther King, HS (19-1/2
years). The early teaching years were very unsteady due to the fiscal
crisis in NYC, and things finally stabilized in 1976 as I had built some
seniority and the city was on a solid financial footing.
In mid-1993, I was assigned to the Bureau of Technology
where I worked on citywide curriculum for our programs until the
bureaus were disbanded at the end of 1994. I was then assigned to the
Office of Occupational Education, and became involved in the logistic
support of occupational programs throughout the city. As is the case
within any department of education, the agency structure constantly
changed, and eventually we became a city agency under mayoral control in
1992. At this juncture, I will not judge the wisdom of that change as
there are many adjustments being made to the system as time progresses.
In June 2005, I was assigned to the offices of Virtual
Enterprise (VE), an entrepreneurship and marketing program that was
about nine years in existence. This assignment actually was developing
during the prior two years when I assisted VE two days per week, and
spent my other three working for the Office of Career & Technical
Education. Although I was a teacher, I assumed the title of Assistant
Director, and can now say that these years with Virtual Enterprise have
been the best of my 38!
As of January 16, 2008 I officially retired from the New York City Department of Education, and continue to work with the Virtual Enterprise team as a consultant, something that allows me some needed flexibility in my daily schedule, and some time to pursue other personal interests.
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