Romario R. Ricketts (Communication Studies, ’18), was a member of the Phi Theta Kappa Honor Society and National Society of Leadership and Success at BMCC, where he made the Dean’s List with a 3.93 GPA and garnered an NYC City Council Citation. In 2020, Mr. Ricketts graduated with a B.A. in Political Science and a minor in English Professional Writing through the Macaulay Honors College at Lehman College, CUNY. He works as a media assistant, leading press outreach for census and redistricting, at the Brennan Center for Justice at NYU Law, where he served earlier as a communications intern. Mr. Ricketts also gained experience as an account coordinator for national issue advocacy at Berlinrosen, and was a communications intern at the Office of the Brooklyn Borough President and American Civil Liberties Union.
Q: What is your favorite memory (professor, class, etc.) of BMCC?
My favorite memory of BMCC is undoubtedly the homey feeling of the main campus at 199 Chambers Street. The energy you feel when you step into the second-floor hallway is rare and unlike any other school I’ve attended or visited. The second-floor cafeteria and lounge area is the center of all manner of activities but also manages to feel like home — a super unique quality. I also treasure fond memories of my alternative spring break trip to Fort Pierce, Florida in Spring 2018, where we worked with Habitat for Humanity to add the finishing touches to a house for a family in need. We rounded off the trip with a visit to Universal Studios in Orlando. It would be remiss of me not to mention my Panther Partners, Communication Studies Club and RIC Club families. These institutions (they are!) grounded me, rendered immeasurable support, and provided me with a community of like-minded and similarly situated people, many of whom I call friends to this day. I spent the best two years of undergrad at BMCC. And I owe my success to the community I found there.
Q: How did BMCC help you get where you are today?
I was living in the U.S. for less than a year when I started BMCC. A random class I registered for to maintain full-time status during my first semester, “The Black Man in Contemporary Society” ( AFN 129) with Professor Aleah Ranjitsingh sparked my interest in social justice work. Midway through the semester, I switched my major and have not looked back since. My Communication Studies major allowed me to strengthen my writing while equipping me with the strategic communication and interpersonal skills needed in the workplace. Other interdisciplinary coursework furnished me with the context to work on the issues I do today.
Q: What advice do you have for today’s BMCC students?
Find your ‘thing’ and do your ‘thing.’ What excites you? What interests you the most? Is there something that you are naturally good at? What separates Albert Einstein, James Baldwin and Maya Angelou from the billions of men and women who walked similar paths is that Einstein, Baldwin and Angelou all pursued the things they loved — and they excelled! We can’t all be immortalized in history books, but there is a drop of genius in each and every one of us. We can unlock it by finding our ‘thing’ and do doing our ‘thing.’ Also, join a club, get involved in a student success and leadership program, volunteer on campus, and, of course, check your BMCC email, because that is where news and updates on many opportunities are found.
Q: Why is it important for alumni to stay involved with BMCC?
To whom much is given, much is required. If your experience was anything like mine, then you were fortunate to have had professors, school staff and alumni who helped to shape your experience. Staying involved with BMCC could be one way of paying it forward for current students.