A Tour of Rockefeller Group in NYC

Students from East Islip High School’s Environment Green and International Business Globalization Career Academies were recently invited to visit Rockefeller Group Technology Solutions, Inc. (RGTS), on invitation of the company’s CEO, John Tarduno.

RGTS, whose office is located in the McGraw-Hill Building at 1221 Avenue of the Americas in New York City, is a leading telecommunications and data services firm. Originally established to provide telephone services for Rockefeller Center tenants, the company now delivers technology solutions to more than 500 clients.

The Career Academy’s tour of the McGraw-Hill Building began on the 18th floor, currently unoccupied by tenants. The building owners are in the process of making the necessary changes to become LEED certified, which ensures buildings achieve high performance in key areas of human and environmental health, including sustainable site development, water savings, energy efficiency, materials selection and indoor environmental quality. This difficult-to-achieve process requires numerous changes and updates to meet new federal requirements, but once certified, yields both financial benefits as well as environmental awards. Students in the Environment Green Academy are familiar with LEED certification and have discussed the issue with experts in the field. At RGTS, the students examined an area of approximately 48,000 square feet that had to changed or modified to meet the new standards for certification before it could be rented out to a new client.

Next up was a tour of Sirius XM Radio, another McGraw-Hill Building tenant. “The tour guide made us aware of the different cubicle areas for each of the different radio hosts,” recounted Career Academy leader Israel Malinowitzer, the school’s director of careers and student services. “Some were small and some were larger – who the radio personality was would determine their room size. We also saw some live interviews taking place as we walked around the station.”

The Career Academy group was then taken up to the 73rd floor roof, where they were able to walk around and view the entire array of Manhattan skyscrapers as well as Central Park, Fox News, the Statue of Liberty and the Empire State Building, among other sights. After their roof experience, the students were provided with a memorable luncheon courtesy of RGTS.

Tarduno also arranged for some of the company’s business clients and associates to attend a panel discussion in the conference room. The Career Academy students were required to ready five to ten questions related to business or environmental issues. “The students were well-prepared,” said Malinowitzer. “They asked these business leaders many questions – how did you get this job? What does one need to take in college to pursue this career? How did you start your business? If you had to do it over again, would you remain in this field of work?”

A full day of interaction with the firm’s CEO, CFO, attorney and vice presidents of accounting and human resources left the Career Academy participants absolutely thrilled to have been a part of this educational field trip. “This was an opportunity of a lifetime,” said Malinowitzer. “Our students were very appreciative and thanked all of the business leaders for taking the time to share their expertise in their fields. The committee answered many questions related to college and the importance of students continuing their education in order to be successful.”