BHS Verbatim Interview: Mr. Como


Mr. Como is a teacher and coach here at Bethpage High School. He teaches classes such as Honors Living Environment and AP Biology. Although many students of BHS  may not take interest in science class, Mr. Como has the ability to make students question the world around them and teach lessons that apply to life beyond the classroom.

The Eagle’s Cry: When and why did you decide to become a teacher?

“I had finished college in New Orleans and my parents are a little bit older, so I decided that I was going to come home, I was 26 years old, to take care of my parents. I originally wanted a job in Intel in the Navy, but I wasn’t going back into the Navy so I started looking into jobs in research. I was having trouble getting research jobs so my mom said there was an open call for teaching jobs in the city and why don’t you take one of those and at least you can get a paycheck until you find what you want. I went to the city, went through their whole hiring process and then on my first day in a classroom I loved it and never looked back .” 

 The Eagle’s Cry: Why did you join the Navy instead of attending college after High School?

“My parents were paying for both of my sisters’ school and I wanted to find a way to do it myself so that they didn’t have to pay. And…I am incredibly patriotic. I bleed red, white, and blue, and I got an excellent education from the Navy.” 

The Eagle’s Cry: Where did you attend college and what did you major in? 

“I went to Tulane University in New Orleans. I started out taking Biomedical engineering but I didn’t love the math enough so I transferred to Cell and Molecular Biology.”

The Eagle’s Cry: When and why did you start coaching Marine Fitness?

“I coached fitness first as a favor to Mr. Franchi. Fenster has coached it for years before me and he was talking about retiring, so Mr. Franchi asked me to do it as a favor. I did it as a favor, and I loved it ridiculously, it was amazing. So I never turned back and I’ve done it ever since. It has been like my bizarre, cult, child.”  

The Eagle’s Cry: In what ways do you think BHS could improve? 

“I think we should be more strict about rules. We should be more strict and more clear about how we establish rules and how we follow them. Whenever we discipline kids it should be a personal thing. We should have a personal connection to that kid so that the discipline isn’t just a random detention, that they understand on a personal level what the impact of what they did was.” 

The Eagle’s Cry: What are your hobbies outside of teaching and coaching?

“Hunting, fishing, hiking, skiing. Anything outdoors.” 

The Eagle’s Cry: What is your favorite way to spend your summer?

“My favorite way to spend the summer is a combination of traveling and spending time outside.”

The Eagle’s Cry: What is your favorite type of music?

“I don’t have a favorite type of music. I listen to all kinds of music…anything besides that poppy type of country…and NO Taylor Swift.”

The Eagle’s Cry: What makes you happy? 

“I don’t know, but I am… the standard answer for that is anger.”