Jordan Forte gets along with all of her teachers, she always has. But the Huntington High School junior especially hit it off with science teacher Joseph Cohen.
“Mr. Cohen is my favorite teacher for so many reasons,” Ms. Forte said. “He is not only a great teacher, but a great person that I can go to for anything when I need help or advice with life or school.”
A member of the Island Trees High School Class of 2001, Mr. Cohen earned a BS degree at Molloy College in teaching secondary grade level biology and a master’s degree at CUNY Queens College. He completed his state student teaching requirements at Baldwin and joined Huntington High School’s faculty in September 2006.
“Mr. Cohen will always try to make it interactive with students and do things such as dress up to try and help students understand what is going on in class,” Ms. Forte said. “I will never forget my freshman year when in the first couple of weeks he dressed up as Charles Darwin to help us understand the lesson. I thought he was crazy at the time, but was really just helping.”
For many years, Mr. Cohen was the faculty advisor for Huntington’s National Honor Society chapter. In the role, he helped guide the students who organized and coordinated the high school’s annual Relay For Life.
“Mr. Cohen goes out of his way to help kids excel,” Ms. Forte said. “He is the type of teacher that always wants kids to succeed. He puts the extra time and effort in to help each and every student that needs help and will accommodate students based on their needs. He also always allows kids to come in his room, which is extremely helpful. Even if he doesn’t know a kid or hasn’t them in class, he will help them out.”
While Ms. Forte clearly appreciates everything Mr. Cohen does in his role as a high school teacher, the faculty member also has high regard for the teenager.
“Jordan is a phenomenal kid who always has a positive outlook about life,” Mr. Cohen said. “She is always working hard to better herself and always makes time to help those around her. And has a great sense of humor! She is one of those students that can brighten up a teacher’s day.”
As the veteran educator heads into the heart of his career, he is very content. “Huntington has been my only job and I wouldn’t have it any other way,” Mr. Cohen said. I love my colleagues and the kids. I became a teacher because I was inspired by my father, who was a lifelong biology teacher and science chairperson and worked at Walt Whitman High School during the latter part of his career.”