This past year, the Lunch with the Law program has worked to bridge the divide between young men of color and members of the law enforcement community.
The program brings students from SUNY Broome, Union-Endicott High School and Jennie F. Snapp Middle School together with a variety of law enforcement figures, from police cadets still at the academy to attorneys and judges. Events are held both on the SUNY Broome campus or off, such as the kick-off event at Union-Endicott High School.
As with many large events, the logistics can be complex – but Talik Farmer makes sure it runs seamlessly.
A member of SUNY Broome’s Men of Excellence, Talik is the student coordinator for the Lunch with the Law program and responsible for much that goes on behind the scenes, from set-up to communicating with participants.
“I learned a lot. (Holding an event) is a lot of responsibility. If the event fails or if the event goes well, it’s on you,” he said.
Now in this third semester, he’s currently majoring in Individual Studies in the Liberal Arts division, but originally started in Business Administration. He felt the need to expand and did so, with courses in Event Management and photography.
“I’m seeing where it takes me. So far, I’m kind of liking it,” he said of his journey. “I’m looking to find my path, what I feel most comfortable with.”
Photography has proved to be one of his more challenging courses, but he’s deeply interested in it and considering career options. “A camera can take you a lot of difference places,” he said.
But he’s enjoying Event Management, too, and has honed his skills by joining his classmate in hosting a variety of happenings, from the Halloween After Party Bingo Night to the Toys for Tots Holiday Bash.
Favorite professors include Maria Montemagno in Event Management, Brian Loy in Business and Charles Petrolawicz in Business. But his deepest connection is with Educational Opportunity Program Director Venessa Rodriguez who, along with Vice President Carol Ross-Scott, initially recommended that he organize the Lunch with the Law program.
“She’s my second mom at SUNY Broome,” said Talik, who is part of the EOP program. “She really cares.”
The Brooklyn native is still finalizing his plans for the future. He would like to hold an event of his own someday, once he finds the ultimate project. He is also interested in maybe opening a vegan restaurant, appreciating the appeal of healthy food.
While a lot is still under development, he knows some things for certain: He wants to pursue education beyond his Associate’s degree — and he had a great start at SUNY Broome.
“I met a lot of great people,” he said.