The OCC Effect: Dr. Danielle Berry, '13

Dr. Danielle Berry. '13
Dr. Danielle Berry's experience in OCC's C-STEP program opened the door to a career in science.

Dr. Danielle Berry came to Onondaga Community College with a newly found passion and turned it into the foundation for a career. "Attending OCC was the best choice for me to begin my college education because it was affordable and it allowed me to stay home. I knew about the quality of the education because my siblings had attended there."

Berry is a Senior Research Specialist in Technical Services and Development at Dow. She didn't realize she was interested in science until age 15 when she attended a robotics program in Syracuse sponsored by Mercy Works. Berry, who was homeschooled, completed high school work one year later and came to OCC as a Mathematics & Science major.

Shortly after arriving on campus she became involved in the Collegiate Science and Technology Program which is often referred to as C-STEP. The Collegiate Science and Technology Entry Program is Supported and funded by the New York State Department of Education. "C-STEP was a huge part of my success at OCC and beyond. It introduced me to scientific conferences, provided laboratory research opportunities, and gave me access to mentors who pushed me to maximize my potential." Berry would attend statewide and national conferences in Washington, D.C. where her work was recognized and applauded. The honors convinced her she was pursuing the right field of study. After earning her associate degree in 2013 she transferred to SUNY-ESF. She received a bachelor's degree in Chemistry and worked in the industry for a year before being accepted into the Ph.D. program at the University of Texas at Dallas.

While working toward her doctorate she attended the Building Engineering and Science Talent symposium hosted by Dow where she learned about career options. She was impressed with their presentation, made contacts, and landed a job. Eight years after completing her work at OCC she remains grateful for the impact the College had on her. "I am very thankful for my experience at OCC. It built my foundation to where I am today. I remain committed to continue career conversations with anyone pursuing STEM because of the impact my educators and mentors had on my development."

Dr. Danielle Berry, '13



Onondaga Community College