Destination: College Hosts “The Best Night of the Year”

Pictured: Suzanne McCann (R) with incoming Executive Director Michele Roque (L)

By Nancy McKenna

June 28, 2023: On Wednesday, June 14, Destination: College (“DC”) held its annual gala to honor its volunteers, coaches, student athletes and Cooney Scholars at the Bronxville Field Club, which was festooned with flags from the colleges and universities where the 46 DC seniors will be matriculating. This year’s event was also a tribute to outgoing Executive Director Suzanne McCann who has been with the organization for nine years.

As Board Chair Nancy McKenna noted in welcoming guests “this is our special evening to celebrate and thank all whose generosity in terms of time, talent and financial contributions enable us to run our programs. Those programs ensure that our staff and volunteers are able to assist our 46 seniors with their college applications and financial aid forms. It also helps us ensure that our 140 students who currently attend 70 colleges and universities throughout the United States stay there”.

McKenna thanked the hardworking and impactful DC staff who helped 46 seniors with the college application and financial aid process. One third of these students were admitted to EOP or HEOP programs, which provide tremendous academic and financial support but require tremendous additional paperwork.

McKenna then introduced Michele Roque, a proud graduate of Mount Vernon High School with a BA from SUNY Binghamton and a Masters in Literature from Mercy College where she is currently an adjunct Professor of Literature as the incoming Executive Director, noting that DC is looking forward to the next chapter under Michele’s capable hands.


McCann, College Access Head Linda D’Arcy, Student Speaker Kaseem Miller, McKenna and Roque

DC then honored longtime volunteer Kathy Fino, who passed away unexpectedly this past December. McKenna explained that Kathy, who had been with DC for over 11 years, had been a mainstay of both the Boys Basketball and Summer Programs, where she was beloved by her students for her big heart and loving demeanor.

Kathy had a particularly close relationship with Demetre Roberts, whom she successfully tutored in two science regents’ exams. Kathy’s DC colleagues and many admirers contributed to an award in her honor which was presented to Demetre at the gala. Demetre, a standout point guard and team captain at Saint Thomas Aquinas College where he graduated in 2022, went on to receive an MBA this past May from Fairleigh Dickinson University.

Demetre was also the captain of that basketball team where he was already known by many in the crowd that evening as “the starting point guard and ferocious #2 on the basketball court, whose tenacious and electrifying play led his team to the historic defeat of the number 1 ranked Purdue in the NCAA March Madness Tournament, the biggest upset in that tournament’s history.” Helping make this award to Demetre were Claudine Bazinet, Kathy’s daughter, a Bronxville resident, and her sister Marybeth Hegarty, who came from Florida for the occasion. 

Demetre Roberts Accepting the Kathy Fino Memorial Award

Mrs. McKenna went on to celebrate retiring Executive Director Suzanne McCann’s many accomplishments.  McKenna noted that when Suzanne first started, DC worked with a mere four teams at Mount Vernon High School. Today DC works with nine. Today, under Suzanne’s leadership, assistance with the college application and financial aid process are conducted in a dedicated college center -the Cooney College Center-located in the MVHS library, headed by Linda D’Arcy, DC’s Director of College Access, hired under Suzanne’s auspices.

DC has also hired Laura Amigone as its dedicated Director of College Success to oversee the progress of the 140 DC students currently in college. In 2014 DC helped 23 students with the college process; this year DC helped 46. While these numbers speak volumes about Suzanne’s leadership and impact on DC, they don’t begin to reveal all her intangibles. How she got DC through Covid. How she goes the distance for all students who cross her path.

McKenna then announced with great pride the creation of an annual $5,000 scholarship in Suzanne’s honor, fittingly named the “Suzanne McCann GO THE DISTANCE SCHOLARSHP AWARD”. Endowed by an anonymous donor, this scholarship will be made to one or more of DC’s most deserving students, whether graduating from high school or already in college or graduate school.

A final speaker was DC’s own Kaseem Miller, a standout member of MVHS’s baseball team, a graduate of Hartford College and business school, and now with a full-time job at PepsiCo as a Total Rewards Operation Analyst after having secured a DC internship with that company. Kaseem spoke movingly of the impact DC had in his life, urging the DC high school students in the room to stay the course academically, knowing that DC would always be in their corner.

The event ended with the presentation of the prestigious Jeff Cooney Memorial Scholarships to 22 DC student athletes.

Jeff Cooney Memorial Scholars Class of 2023


Community Service Organizations Directory

Community Service Organizations

Bronxville Beautification Council

Organized in 1982 and incorporated in 1993, the Bronxville Beautification Council (BBC) is a not for profit organization administered by a Board of Directors. Its mission is to enhance and maintain the natural and man-made beauty of Bronxville Village, with emphasis on the downtown business district of Bronxville. The BBC uses the dollars raised in its annual spring solicitation letter to residents to fund the mum, tulip and summer flower plantings downtown and at traffic intersections, as well as the summer hanging baskets. Every few years the group spearheads such major endeavors as the renovation of Leonard Morange Square on the west side of the railroad tracks and the beautification of the Lawrence Hospital traffic circle, which included the addition of plants and the building of the fountain that now makes a gracious western portal to our town. The BBC also works with other civic groups to monitor the aesthetics of retail signage, the consistency of sidewalk materials, and litter and graffiti. During Beautify Bronxville Week, the BBC sponsors a poetry reading and works with Scout groups on the annual village clean-up. 

Bronxville Beautification Council
PO Box 127
Bronxville, New York 10708

Bronxville Boy Scouts

The village of Bronxville has a long tradition of scouting. “The troops and packs of Bronxville have maintained the finest scouting organizations and have taught the boys of the Bronxville area to be leaders and outstanding members of the local, national and global communities.”

There are several Boy Scout Troops in Bronxville, including Troops 1, 2, 4, and 5.

Bronxvillle Girls Scouts

The Girls Scouts is “the world’s preeminent organization dedicated solely to girls where, in an accepting and nurturing environment, girls build character and skills for success in the real world.” In Girl Scouts, “girls discover the fun, friendship and power of girls together. Through the many enriching experiences provided by Girl Scouts, they can grow courageous and strong.”

Bronxville Historical Conservancy

The Bronxville Historical Conservancy was founded in 1998 to further the understanding and appreciation of the history and current life of the village. The Conservancy furthers its mission through the presentation of programs, publications, lectures and special events that foster an awareness of the village's architectural, artistic and cultural heritage, and lends its support for projects designed to strengthen and preserve those legacies. Anyone who is interested in the Bronxville and its history can become a member; varying levels of membership are available. 

Bronxville Historical Conservancy
PO Box 989
Bronxville, New York 10708


Bronxville School Foundation

The Bronxville School Foundation, founded in 1991, is a non-profit organization independent from the school with the sole purpose of supporting the school. The Foundation raises money each year through donations from school families, community members, and alumni, among others.These contributions fund grants that provide cutting-edge technology, innovative programs and curriculum and other resources that are beyond the scope of public school funding.

177 Pondfield Road
Bronxville, New York 10708

Bronxville Women’s Club

The Bronxville Women’s Club offers lectures, exhibits and concerts. It also has a beautiful clubhouse which is available for rental for events.

135 Midland Avenue
Bronxville, New York 10708

Bronxville Youth Council

The Bronxville Youth Council provides volunteer and leadership opportunities for high school students in the village of Bronxville.

177 Pondfield Road
Bronxville, New York 10708
914-395-0500 ext 1789

Counseling Center

Founded in 1971, the mission of the Counseling Center “is to provide a wide range of psychotherapeutic and counseling services to individuals, couples and families by a staff of highly trained, experience and dedicated psychotherapists. 

The Counseling Center
180 Pondfield Road
Bronxville, New York 10708

Community Fund of Bronxville, Eastchester & Tuckahoe

The mission of the Community Fund is “to support broad social services in Bronxville 10708, Eastchester and Tuckahoe through grants and technical support to local agencies and community projects. All money raised here in our community stays here in our community.” 

15 Park Place
Bronxville, New York 10708

Friends of the Bronxville Library

The Friends of the Bronxville Library is a not-for-profit membership association whose mission is to focus attention on the “Library’s services, facilities and needs” as well as sponsor projects and provide materials that are beyond the reach of the Library’s regular budget and perform other services. 

Junior League of Bronxville

The Junior League of Bronxville is “an organization of women committed to promoting voluntarism, developing the potential of women and to improving the community through the effective action and leadership of trained volunteers. Its purpose is exclusively educational and charitable.”

Rotary Club of Bronxville

The mission of the Rotary Club of Bronxville is to “encourage and foster the ideal of service as a basis of worthy enterprise and to encourage and foster (1) the development of friendships within the community as an opportunity for service, (2) high ethical standards in business and professions, (3) the application of the ideal of service of each member to his personal and business and community life and (4) the advancement of international understanding, good will and peace through a world fellowship.” 

Senior Citizens of Bronxville

Senior Citizens of Bronxville is a not-for-profit organization that provides services and programs to seniors within the 10708 zip code area. “Programs cover a wide range of activities from educational seminars and cultural enrichment, to community services, bridge classes and exercise.”

Community Service Organizations Recent Articles


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