D’Jean Nikitov Sworn In As OCCC Student Trustee

MIDDLETOWN – Djean Nikitov was sworn in as the student representative to the SUNY Orange Board of Trustees for the 2023-24 academic year, taking the oath of office from Board Chair Ralph Martucci Jr. during the Board’s initial meeting of the academic year on Wednesday (Sept. 20).

As the student Trustee, Nikitov will represent the College’s 4,000-plus students at Board meetings and other College events.

A native of Montevideo, Uraguay, Nikitov moved to Orange County in December 2021 to begin his pursuit of a business management degree at SUNY Orange. Since arriving at the College, he has been a constant student presence on both campuses and has become active within the College community. Currently residing in Middletown, Nikitov is a member of the student-run Board of Activities and is on the Student Senate. He works as a student ambassador with the Admissions Office and is a peer orientation leader for the College’s PROSPERAR program (a federally funded Title V initiative). He has also been a member of the Business Club.

Last year, Nikitov joined two of his fellow SUNY Orange senators as they participated in the SUNY Student Assembly’s “Advocacy Day” in Albany, joining their classmates from across SUNY to call upon the state’s legislators for support. The students were requesting that the state increase Tuition Assistance Program (TAP) income eligibility, increase the minimum TAP award, increase TAP and Excelsior Scholarship funding, and increase funding for on-campus mental health services.

At the start of the Fall 2023 semester, Nikitov was chosen to cut the ribbon on a newly renovated 8,000-square-foot student lounge on the first floor of the Shepard Student Center on the College’s Middletown campus.

“Coming to this country and SUNY Orange has been the experience of my life. The biggest take away, besides the academics, is the second family I made here,” he says. “I’m honored to be a student Trustee and look forward to representing all of the students at SUNY Orange.”

His term will conclude at the Board’s June 2024 meeting.

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