Denise and Tony De Luca

Denise and Tony De Luca, P’13

Parents of Vanessa & Anthony De Luca, College of Staten Island

Macaulay: Can you share with us some biographical background?

Tony and I have known each other since childhood and we’ve been married for 27 years (but it seems much longer than that—just kidding!). Tony delivered newspapers to my grandmother’s house and I spent a lot of time at Granny’s. Both of our families settled in Staten Island in the 1800’s; my family came from Norway (my family name is Hansen) and Tony’s came from Italy. The story in Tony’s family is that once they saw the tanks rolling in, after living through the war, they knew it was time to leave Naples.

Tony works for the NYC Transit Authority as a train dispatcher. He currently controls all train traffic (N,R,D service) through the northwest corridor of Brooklyn. He’s been with the NYC Transit Authority for 22 years. I’m an executive assistant for George Kaye, President of Supreme Chocolatier and a man I greatly admire. Supreme Chocolatier has been operated by four generations since it was founded in 1911. Working for a family business reflects the values Tony and I try to instill with Vanessa and Anthony. Although as twins, their bond has always been strong.

M:  What was your hope for your son and daughter when they started Macaulay Honors College?

Living in Staten Island, we didn’t feel it was necessary for Vanessa and Anthony to attend college away from home. New York City offers just about any experience imaginable. As parents, we encouraged Vanessa and Anthony to get the most out of the Macaulay experience. They’ve maintained excellent grades, are very happy and well adjusted and they take advantage of the New York experience. Also, unlike many of their peers, they will not be saddled with a huge college debt when they graduate next spring.

M:  What has been the biggest surprise?

The biggest surprise is how personal and friendly the Macaulay staff and administration have been. Vanessa and Anthony, as well as my husband and I feel that if we have any concerns we can approach the staff and things will get resolved. I don’t really think many other colleges operate in this manner and we feel it is a real credit to the institution.

M:  For parents with students just starting college, what would you say, from your experience, is the most important thing to keep in mind?

Try to know your child’s strengths and weaknesses. Make an honest assessment of his or her abilities and help them choose a program that fits your child’s personality and ability.

At Macaulay, the staff is very attentive and approachable. The faculty are caring and knowledgeable, each student receives individual attention and the student population interacts very well. Our children have received a great education and are very content.
In our case, Macaulay was the perfect fit for Vanessa and Anthony.