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Pequa Vet Nets Scholarship

Three Long Island veterans who served in Iraq and Afghanistan — including one from Massapequa — were recently awarded scholarships to help them gain an education and foster a life after combat.

The law firm of Meyer, Suozzi, English & Klein, P.C. announced the scholarships for the students who are currently enrolled at Nassau Community College.

“It is incumbent upon the Long Island business community to assist our veterans as they transition into civilian life,” said Meyer Suozzi English & Klein, P.C. Managing Attorney, Lois Carter Schlissel. “It is essential that we help them complete their education by providing tuition assistance so that they can compete for jobs in this very difficult economic climate.”

The scholarship committee is chaired by A. Thomas Levin, chair of the firm’s Local Government, Land Use Law and Environmental Compliance Practice and the Professional Responsibility Practice.

Scholarship recipients include Massapequa resident Corporal Joshua Rivera. A graduate of East Meadow High School in 2006, Rivera served in the U.S. military from 2007 to 2011, with a year-long stint in Iraq from June 2008 through June 2009. Rivera spent the early years of his life in various foster homes in the New York City area until his adoption at the age of 14. The corporal said his early life helped expose him to a variety of cultures, ethnic backgrounds and religions — gifts he is very grateful to have received. Rivera played football in high school and enrolled in Nassau Community College immediately after graduation, but he soon realized he wanted more from his life and decided to enlist in the military. While his adopted parents did not initially support his decision, he said they came to understand his strong desire to serve his nation, make a difference and give back to his community. Rivera hopes to pursue a career as a pediatric nurse and would like to one day start a family.

Other recipients of the scholarship include Juana Quijano of Garden City and Gregory Carlisle of West Babylon.