The world is an open book for Sarina Turbendian, a Farmingdale State College Class of 2014 graduate and village resident.
During the commencement ceremony at Hofstra University last May — when over 1,000 Farmingdale State College students received a diploma — Turbendian said that as she waited with anticipation to hear her name read over the sound system, she was more focused on making sure she did not fall down or shake anybody’s hand the wrong way. She said that it wasn’t until she had gotten home that the realization started to sink in.
“Then it hit me… I graduated,” Turbendian said. “Four years went by so quickly.”
This story originally appeared in the June 14, 2014 edition of the Farmingdale Observer.
Earning her degree in professional communications, Turbendian said she will be taking a break from her studies, at least for now, but plans to return to school to pursue a Master’s in didactic literature. Her goal is to get into publishing, preferably of young adult fiction novels, although she is open to other publications.
Last year, Turbendian became an intern at Callis Editora, where she edited several children’s books that were translated from Portuguese to English. She said this would give her the necessary foot-in-the-door that she needs to kick-start her career in publishing.
“So much of our lives are embedded in storytelling,” she said. “It is interacting… but we do not entirely realize it in our [day-to-day] life.”
As a child, Turbendian remembers she always loved writing. Whether it was poems scribbled onto little pieces of paper for her mom and dad or short stories, she was always passionate about the written word. Learning from her “childish” poems, Turbendian said she leaves Farmingdale State College with a better sense of grammar and diction which she hopes to carry proudly as she embarks on pursing her career.
But Turbendian is not only a wordsmith; she is also a vocal activist for social justice.
“Now that I have graduated college, I want to be able to focus a good amount of my energy to help elicit change in government regarding human rights issues and equality,” Turbendian adds. “Thankfully, we live in a world where it is no longer acceptable to marginalize certain groups of people based on demographics. I want to be on the frontline, so to speak, when it comes to fighting for equality for all people.”
Motivated and goal-oriented, Turbendian, and the other Class of 2014 graduates—high school, college and otherwise—have so much ahead of them. Congratulations.