Center Projects

Our Work: Throughout its existence, the CCE has been involved in a wide variety of projects designed to help serve the Long Island community and beyond. With the assistance of our partnering organizations, the CCE has spearheaded initiatives to serve Long Island's youth, its communities of color, its Native American population, and service providers. Some of these projects include:

Distracted Driving Prevention for High School Students: Since 2014, CCE has received generous support from the State Farm Good Neighbor Citizenship grant funds. These funds were utilized to equip our school district partners with full distracted driving simulator systems. Working with these schools, we delivered the curriculum to 3500 students and we have provided Train-The-Trainer activities for faculty and administrators who to replicate the District Driving curriculum in their respective schools for many years to come.


Food Pantry: The SBU Food Pantry was established in response to findings that the Stony Brook University population is part of a growing national trend of students experiencing food insecurity. In an effort to ensure that students from a low income background can both attain a college degree and be able to nourish themselves sufficiently during their pursuit of that degree, the pantry was opened. Additionally, realizing that providing nutritious food is the best way to nourish a healthy brain, we only stock our shelves with healthy food items. The SBU Food Pantry is now part of a national movement of over 50 campus-based food pantries across the country, mostly located at public universities. Currently, Professor Donna Crapanzano is the Co-Director of the Food Pantry.


Distracted and Drowsy Driving: Curriculum - In response to the dangerous consequences of distracted driving (most notably texting while driving and talking on a cell phone while driving) nationally and locally, the CCE has developed a Distracted and Drowsy Driving curriculum. This curriculum is delivered in local school districts on Long Island to student drivers or soon-to-be student drivers. The curriculum utilizes an all-in-one interactive distracted driving simulator. This system enhances users’ ability to recognize, anticipate, and respond to driving hazards with voice-integrated technology that mimics a distracted driving experience without putting drivers at risk. The simulated experience allows drivers to become more acutely aware of the perils of driving while distracted, and has generated considerable praise for its effectiveness. In spring 2016, we invited select school district faculty and law enforcement officers to Stony Brook University’s School of Health Technology and Management to attend a Train-the-Trainer Day to learn and practice key elements of the Stony Brook University Distracted Driving Prevention for High School Students curriculum. Upon completion of the program, the school district faculty and law enforcement remarked most positively on the train-the-training session expressing their interest to integrate the curriculum in their school districts and community programs.

imageNew York State Governors Highway Safety Association Report: In spring 2016, two of our faculty attended quarterly meetings with the Suffolk County Traffic Safety Board. Additionally in Summer of 2016, a description of our Distracted Driving program was included and cited in the New York State Governors Highway Safety Association Report on the dangers of drowsy driving.

Suffolk County Highway Patrol Division Trailer: Suffolk County Highway Patrol Division has now purchased a trailer to implement a distracted driving awareness program, and has placed the School of Health Technology and Management’ logo on the trailer in support of our collaborative efforts.

New York State Governor's Traffic Safety Committee: In spring 2017, the Center for Community Engagement and Leadership Development collaborated with the New York State Highway Safety Committee and was awarded a New York State Governor's Traffic Safety Committee grant to spearhead a statewide social media campaign to raise awareness about the dangers of drowsy driving. In summer 2017, the Center was awarded a New York State Governor's Traffic Safety Committee to create a drowsy driving awareness curriculum supported by a research study to be conducted by faculty of the Center.


HCARE: The School of Health Technology and Management (SHTM) received a Project Award of $1.3 million from the Bureau of Health Professions, Health Resources and Services Administration (HRSA) in 2009 under the Health Careers Opportunity Program (HCOP). The program’s goal was to create a more diverse and competitive applicant pool for allied health education programs and jobs by conducting a three-year educational outreach project to financially and educationally disadvantaged students in the Amityville, Brentwood, William Floyd and Wyandanch school districts and the Sovereign Unkechaug Nation.


From 2009 through 2012, the HCOP initiative educated over 2000 students through school-based and University-based activities for students in grades 7 through 12. Beginning in 2012, the HCOP program was renamed the Health Careers Academic Readiness and Excellence (HCARE) program, and in 2013 this program was implemented through the Center for Community Engagement and Leadership Development at the School of Health Technology and Management. Since 2013, HCARE has been instrumental in the implementation of grant awards totaling over $360,000 from State Farm Insurance, Long Island Community Foundation, NYS Governor’s Traffic Safety Committee, NYS Highway Safety Association, and NYS Education Department. From 2013 to the present, the HCARE initiative has continued the successful HCOP model by educating over 2500 students through school-based activities for students in grades 7 through 12: HCARE, HSTEM - My Brother’s Keeper, IceCube Project, Misunderstood Science Awareness initiative, and Distracted Driving Prevention for High School Students.

Human Trafficking Workshop for Healthcare Professionals: Human trafficking is a complex global problem, the effects of which are felt even at the most local levels. It has been demonstrated that over 80% of human trafficking victims end up in a healthcare setting at some point during their captivity. Yet, many healthcare professionals do not know the risk factors or red flags associated with human trafficking. Partnering with Long Island against Trafficking, CCE faculty members, Brooke Ellison and Ghenet Weldeslassie plan to host a workshop for healthcare students and professionals, training them on the nature of the human rights issue and how to recognize its presence in their patients.


LINA Incubator: In spring 2015, we received a grant from the Long Island Community Foundation to help the Native American Unkechaug Nation community to consider the creation of a small business incubator on Long Island. This business incubator would help Native American small businesses (including start ups and existing firms) be more successful. It could include a building that houses 10-20 small and start up businesses that share things like a photocopier, receptionist, and conference room. It also would give Native American entrepreneurs and small businesses ready access to business assistance, through on-site workshops and one-on-one help. The incubator would be open to small businesses owned by Native Americans, as well as those that are joint ventures or jointly owned by multiple persons including Native Americans. The incubator likely would be “mixed-use,” meaning it would assist existing small and start up businesses in a variety of industries and markets. It might also house industry-specific equipment and facilities, depending on Native American entrepreneurs’ interest.

imageWyandanch Union Free School District’s Community Engagement Team (CET): In summer 2015, we were invited to join the Wyandanch Union Free School District’s Community Engagement Team (CET) aimed at developing recommendations for improving Milton L. Olive Middle School. In 2015, we submitted a Male Survivors of Violence grant. And in 2016, we submitted a Wyandanch High School Afterschool Activity grant.

Presidential Mini-Grant: In November 2014, a joint effort was made between Stony Brook University’s Physician Assistant Program in collaboration with Brentwood High School to promote diversity within the Physician Assistant profession. Over the course of two days, Physician Assistant students presented a showcase of healthy lifestyles, related to healthcare, to several hundred Brentwood High School students. A select group of Brentwood High School participants then attended a day-long visit to Stony Brook University to participate in leadership and communication seminars, interactive workshops, and mentoring activities all sponsored by the Physician Assistant Program.

Stony Brook Physician Assistant (PA) program partnered with Brentwood High School in an initiative to educate their students about the expanding health care workforce and the important role that PAs play in providing quality, patient-centered care.

Help Suffolk Holiday Toy Drive: In December 2016, a joint effort was made between Stony Brook University’s Physician Assistant Program in collaboration with the Help Suffolk organization, a shelter for homeless families. First-year Physician Assistant students, pre-Physician Assistant club students, and Athletic Training students began a toy drive to benefit children between the ages of 5 and 17. The Stony Brook University students also used the club’s funds to purchase 75 stockings, craft supplies, stickers, soap bubbles, silly glasses and candy to create holiday stockings for the children. In all, six car loads of collected gifts were delivered to the homeless shelter’s children.

Shepherd’s Gate Collaboration: In 2017, a joint effort was proposed between Stony Brook University’s Physician Assistant Program in collaboration with Shepherd’s Gate, a Brentwood community partner, to present a health literacy initiative with families of pre-school and kindergarten children attending Shepherd’s Gate.