Breanna Cherchio

Breanna Cherchio signs with a student in the American Sign Language lab in Mawhinney Hall.

  • Major: Early Childhood Education and American Sign Language
  • Homeschooled, from Camillus

Breanna has gone from a student who would drive to campus, take classes and leave to one who has totally embraced campus life. “During my first year, I didn’t interact with anyone. I came to school, went to my classes and went home. I barely knew the people in my classes.” Now in her second year, Breanna is Vice President of Media for the Student Association, a Resident Assistant in the residence hall, a member of international honor society Phi Theta Kappa and is working toward membership in the National Society of Leadership and Success. “I’m interacting with people, making connections and making friends. It’s been good!”

Breanna started as an Early Childhood Education major but recently added American Sign Language (ASL) as a second major. She had a background in ASL thanks to an interpretive dance event she participated in. Years later at a large gathering she noticed a boy who was deaf who no one was communicating with. “I was able to sign some things back to him. To see his face that I was able to talk to him because no one else there could it was like ‘Oh my gosh! She knows a few words!’ I thought, ‘I need to see that for the rest of my life.’” During the fall 2017 semester Breanna decided to take an ASL class. She loved it and within the first few weeks moved up to an advanced ASL class.

Breanna plans to leave OCC after the spring 2018 semester and join the U.S. Navy Reserves. “I grew up with all of the little boy dreams. I wanted to be a firefighter, spy, cop or in the military. I researched each one. Spy wasn’t all that realistic. I could still be a firefighter. Police didn’t seem to fit me. Military just seemed to work.”

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