NEWS

Air Force major presents Mount with internationally flown American flag

October 31, 2012

Newburgh, NY -

Internationally flown American flag

(Left) Mount Saint Mary College president Fr. Kevin E. Mackin, OFM views the American flag that U.S. Air Force Maj. Bruno Gaita, who teaches business classes, donated to the college. The flag was flown over Camp Bastion in Afghanistan. (Right) Senior Master Sgt. Mark Cozzupoli, of the New York Air National Guard, also flew a flag in the name of Mount Saint Mary College. He’s seen here receiving an award from his commander overseas.

Town of Newburgh resident Maj. Bruno Gaita, of the U.S. Air Force, recently presented Mount Saint Mary College president Fr. Kevin E. Mackin, OFM with an American flag that had been flown in Afghanistan.

Gaita, who teaches business courses at the Mount, spent seven months as a logistics squadron commander at Camp Bastion, located in Afghanistan’s southern Helmand Province. He gave an American flag that flew over the camp to Fr. Mackin.

“I present it to the college as a small token of appreciation for everything the school has done for me,” Gaita said.

In addition to teaching on the campus and in the Mount’s accelerated degree program courses at West Point, Gaita obtained a master’s degree in business from the Mount in 2008.

Gaita has been stationed at Stewart Air National Guard Base in Newburgh for the last 20 years and returned to the United States in September 2012.

“It’s good to be home. But it’s a little cold outside,” he said, noting the Hudson Valley weather. He added that he is happy to spend time with his wife, Heather, and his two children after serving in Afghanistan.

This was not the first time a Mount adult education instructor flew an American flag overseas for the college.

Senior Master Sgt. Mark Cozzupoli, of the New York Air National Guard, who also teaches at the college, recently served on a combat mission in Afghanistan and raised the red, white, and blue.

Cozzupoli, a 2007 Mount graduate, also teaches for the college at West Point. He said that he was proud to be part of the Mount Saint Mary College community.

Fr. Mackin is impressed with the qualities of these instructors. “They serve the United States well, and they serve our students well: especially those at West Point,” he said.

Some Mount programs provide a flexible hybrid online and on-site format, as well as accelerated tracks with evening and weekend classes.

The Mount’s graduate programs lead to the following degrees: Master of Business Administration (MBA), Master of Science in Education (MSE), and Master of Science in Nursing (MSN).