On April 19th students from the ASAP program visited the New York Botanical Garden in the Bronx. Students were able to tour the Enid A. Haupt Conservatory, which houses the famous Orchid Show. Our wonderful docent Rose made the experience an enjoyable and educational one. Here’s what a few students had to say;
“The scenery was colorful, blooming and serene. I am happy I joined this trip. I look forward to go on many more trips with ASAP…this was our getaway from the stressors we will face before finals.”
“Thank you for coordinating a wonderful trip to the Botanical Gardens. The abundance of plants and flowers truly made me feel like I was in paradise! It was an informative and relaxing experience that I would definitely want to do again. The Orchid Show was a splendid sight and the shuttle ride was a beautiful tour of the vast Garden. Looking forward to the trips that have yet to come!”
“My time at the botanical gardens was amazing! The flowers were so beautiful! It is a really nice place to go. I think everybody should go because it is amazing!”
On March 19th ASAP students and staff came together to participate in ASAP Day; a day showcasing ASAP pride and an opportunity for perspective students to find out about and apply to the program. ASAP Student Leaders rallied current students to help promote the program by giving out flyers, talking about the benefits of the program, and directing them to the ASAP office where an all day Open House was held. Thanks to the efforts of our motivated team, ASAP had a total of 84 applications!
On February 19th, ASAP hosted their 2nd annual Welcome Back Mocktail Reception. Co-facilitated by Career and Employment Specialist Mr. Atkins and Student Manager Melissa Schwartz, students were shown the do's and don't's of professional networking, including how to introduce yourself to a prospective employer, how to navigate eating and mingling gracefully, and how to follow up with someone in a professional email. Here's what some students had to say about the event:
"It was awesome!! Truly a great way to learn networking techniques that we can apply now and in future networking events."
"The advice on how to close a conversation and how to hold objects when mingling was most helpful."
On January 9th, students in the ASAP program went to see the Broadway show "Peter and the Star Catcher". Performances by Matthew Saldivar (Black Stache), Betsy Hogg (Molly), and Adam Chanler-Berat (Peter) were enjoyed at the beautiful Brooks Atkinson Theater. Here’s what a few of our students had to say about the show:
"It was fantabulous. I loved it!!!!! The actors did so much with so little. The thespians created an imaginary set RIGHT out of thin air!"
"The cast was superb, the script was hysterical and the use of "people as props" was ingenious. That probably makes no sense to people who haven't seen the show, and for good reason. I tried describing it to friends and family but found myself needing to act it out instead! ASAP was pretty great with it, picking us up at school and dropping us off right in front of the theater...I had already known some of the students from my ASAP classes but we became much closer after having a great time together. It's definitely something worth experiencing. Thank you, ASAP."
On December 10th 2012 ASAP celebrated its 5th annual OPEN MIC Holiday Party. Jaydee Rampersad, Ariel Diaz, Lauren Genao, Ashley Persaud, Patrice Kirkland, Marvin Thompson, Ngawang Tharchin, Sasha Hulse, Chelsea Chinapen, Juan Jazmin, and John Balda performed original guitar music, spoken word, a cultural dance, a few songs and even an educational skit on domestic violence. The party concluded with a delicious dinner and gift bags for all attendees.
Written by the ASAP Leadership Team; Nathaly Callejas, Crisitina Enriquez, Clariza Mayo, and Danielle Micelli
On May 2nd 2012 ASAP had its annual event which consisted of two parts. The first portion was a talk on domestic violence by Dr. Carmella Marrone from the “White Ribbon Campaign” and “Women & Work.”The second portion featured a self defense presentation facilitated by Zosia Gorbaty, NWMAF certified self defense instructor who is also an 8th degree black belt, Zujitsu. Both parts of the event were meant to encourage women to stand up and speak up against domestic violence. We also held a raffle, served pizza and refreshments.
Collecting donations for Domestic Violence survivors was a lifetime experience. At our first meeting we decided to start off by selling candy around campus and then have a big sale in April. We all went around selling and promoting the event during our free time. Doing this for about two weeks we were able to collect approximately $200 dollars. But we didn’t stop there; after we were done with the boxes, we moved on to selling raffle tickets and giving out flyers to promote our event. On April 23, we had our first big sale. The terrible weather didn’t stop us. Standing against the wind and going around departments we managed to sell about $260 dollars. The second day was a lot better. Another great thing that happened during that week was that we were able to sell almost all our “Survivor” wristbands, the teddy bears, “stop domestic violence” pencils and little ducks. This might all sound difficult because of the amount of work we put into it but we don’t consider it that way; it is because we are passionate about helping others. Furthermore we would do anything within our power to Stop Domestic Violence and make a difference in the survivor’s life to show them that they are not alone. The ASAP Leadership Team was able to raise a total of $1,160 with ALL monies going directly to Women and Work.
On March 21st, students in the ASAP program went to see the Broadway show "Once". Performances by Steve Kazee and Cristin Milioti were enjoyed at the beautiful Bernard B. Jacobs Theater. Here’s what a few of our students had to say about the show:
"The broadway show "Once" was great! Finally a play with less dancing and more singing, and unlike many other shows you could actually see the musicians playing on stage. That was a major plus for me."
"The play gave me a warm and butterfly feeling inside. Great mix of love and comedy."
"I really enjoyed the play. The theme throughout the play was followed to the end. Thank You for ASAP."
"I really liked this play. I liked that it was funny at times and I also enjoyed the music. My favorite character was "Girl". She was awkard yet likeable."
QBCC ASAP team presented its first Mocktail Networking/Welcome Back reception. Spearheaded and facilitated by the Career & Employment Specialist Stephen Atkins, the QBCC ASAP students were treated to a two part workshop designed to provide them with an experience which would allow them to learn about presenting themselves and how to conduct themselves during networking events.
The first part of the event was presented by the Creative Arts Team (CAT). CAT’s presentation took our students on a self awareness journey and presented scenarios which they could encounter during an interview or networking event and how they may handle themselves.
The second part of the event was a table round-robin exercise that put the students through a series of open-ended questions testing their ability to intelligently and effectively communicate real life situations. We had a panel of six ASAP staff and faculty members facilitating this portion of the event. This proved to be a great segue from what CAT provided during the first part of the event. The students provided feedback to each other as well as the table facilitators giving insight as to how students need to practice to be prepared for situations such as these during actual networking or interviewing sessions.
The overall event proved to be a great success and participating students gave great feedback and asked whether we would do this event again in the future. Based on this feedback, the QBCC ASAP team has added this event to its Fall 2012 schedule of events.
On December 12th 2011 the ASAP staff and students celebrated their fourth annual Holiday Open Mic event. Performances included a cultural dance, as well as hip hop and break dancing, singing, poetry, rapping, and a comedic skit. Student Manager Danielle Izzo, our Resident Poet, joined in the festivities with a poem of her own entitled 'HIV'.
The festivities closed with a delicious dinner, and guests parted with a gift bag.
On December 2nd 2011 students from the ASAP program visited the Dead Sea Scrolls exhibit at Discovery Times Square. The exhibit included a detailed description of the famed Dead Sea Scrolls, and those who discovered them. There was also an actual stone from the Western Wall from the Second Temple in Jerusalem where visitors could leave a written prayer, as well as more than 500 never-before-seen artifacts from biblical times.
"..the Dead Sea Scrolls trip was a great experience in learning about the artifacts and stones in Jerusalem."
“It is fascinating to see how technology can be used to preserve paper.
"I felt like I went to Israel: the Wailing Wall was beautiful and I was able to identify some of the reading on their history.”
“It turned out great! I learned how to spell God in Hebrew, got a camel and saw a lot of old coins.”
“I had a great time at the Dead Sea Scrolls exhibit. I honestly didn't know too much about their story until the trip, but all the pieces from the caves were displayed interestingly, and there was even an adorable faux Wailing Wall for visitors to stash prayers into. Totally educational and fun.”
On November 18th 2011 students from the ASAP program visited the Brooklyn Botanic Garden in Crown Heights, Brooklyn. While there they toured the Fragrance Garden, the Japanese Hill and Pond Garden, and the Shakespeare Garden, among others. The insightful tour guides made the experience an enjoyable and educational one. Here’s what a few students had to say;
“This trip was so worth it! I had so much fun with everyone and I was able to see the beautiful garden. It was so nice getting together and being outside of a school setting and still learning.”
On October 26th 2011, students in the ASAP program went to see ‘How to Succeed In Business Without Really Trying’. We were lucky enough to see performances by Daniel Radcliffe and John Larroquette at the beautiful Hirschfeld Theater. Here’s what a few of our students had to say about the show:“The Broadway show was one of the wonderful times that I had enjoyed in my life so far.”
ASAP welcomed its newest cohort on August 22nd, 2011.
The three day orientation began with opening remarks by QCC ASAP Director Ms. Bobbi Brauer. Students were then introduced to EKOarts and assigned to three performance groups; musical theater, spoken word, and dance. After their practice routine and a quick lunch, students were introduced to the various learning centers on campus, the Library Representative, Single Stop, and the Student Manager Coordinator.
Day two was performance day. Each group performed for their peers as well as a final song performed together. Lunch was followed by a presentation by the CES.
The third and last day of the Institute began with a central greeting from Student Government President and QCC President Call, continued with a campus wide scavenger hunt. The remainder of the day was spent with Student Managers.
Here’s what some of our students had to say about their experience;
“Summer institute was great!!! I got to do new stuff!! I had never sing in front of a crowd before, never shared myself to strangers or went to a scavenger hunt. I made lots of friends, this was a very important factor for me.
“I think the best part of ASAP is that unity, the way we are all connected and never feel as the part of the big crowd but much more like a small school.”
“I actually really enjoyed it, it was really fun and we got to know each other more, it helped us get out of our comfort zones and get comfortable with each other; it was really great!! :]”
On June 1st, 2011, the Queensborough Community College ASAP Program students and staff celebrated its first graduation reception for Cohort 2 and 3 students.
QCC ASAP Director, Ms. Bobbi Brauer, applauded the graduating students as well as their family members on the successful completion of the ASAP Program. Graduates were given the opportunity to say a few words about their most memorable ASAP moments, and thanked the staff for all of their support. Ms. Bobbi Brauer, Dean Paul Marchese, and Ms. Melissa Fernandez, ASAP Program Coordinator spoke to the graduates, before presenting them with their ASAP certificates, pins, and graduation gifts.
The afternoon concluded with an ice cream buffet and karaoke. Many of our students took the opportunity to show off their vocal skills…and a few who were simply brave enough to belt out their favorite tunes!
On December 6th 2010 the ASAP staff and students celebrated their third annual Holiday Open Mic event. Performances included dancing, guitar playing, singing, poetry, and a comedic skit. Student Manager Danielle Izzo, our Resident Poet, joined in the festivities with a poem of her own, 'Outlaw'. Here are a few reactions from performers and guests:
"Overall good experience…it makes people break out of their shell and show who they are in a room full of great people. The atmosphere was great, I felt good performing. Thank you for the open mic I loved it and the food was great!!" :)
"I truly enjoyed the Open Mic event; it was an amazing experience for me. Food was amazing and being around ALL ASAP students was FUN.. I LOVE ASAP!"
"I had a great time…it was great to perform something I wrote myself for everyone. Hopefully next time I won't be as nervous."
"I enjoyed the open mic night. Everyone that performed gave it their all and drew the crowd in with amazement. Wish I could have contributed like that. I want to thank ASAP for the food, entertainment, and gift. Merry Christmas!"
"With the stress of all my classes and the finals approaching, I felt the ASAP Open Mic event was a nice down time moment to relax and enjoy the show."
"I loved the ASAP Open Mic! Each performer portrayed real talent and it's enjoyable to watch the artistic side to the folks you interact with everyday."
"The last open mic was a blast, fun experience to see fellow ASAP students and staff perform. Can't wait for the next one... thank you ASAP ."
The festivities closed with a delicious dinner, and guests parted with a gift bag.
On November 12th 2010, ASAP students and two staff members went to the King Tut exhibit in Times Square. Here’s what a few excited students had to say:
"The King Tut exhibit was a fun and appealing tour to attend and explore. There were many Egyptian artifacts and sculptures to observe and discover. During the tour of the exhibit, I felt like I was going back in time to Ancient Egypt from the surrounding art designs of paintings and symbols. I really learned a lot about Ancient Egypt and one of its famous Pharaohs Tutankhamun, which I am studying and learning about in my Ancient Civilizations history class (HI-110). Overall, it was a great opportunity to explore and go back in time and history to one of the greatest ancient civilizations of all times."
"From the moment we entered the exhibit, everyone was mesmerized by the sheer splendor of the Egyptian civilization as a gradual silence fell over the boisterous crowd. Experiencing this has been valuable and powerful to see a civilization from about 2000 years ago so advanced. Being a part of the Accelerated Study in Associate Program provided a once in a lifetime memorable opportunity."
On October 6th, 2010, students in the ASAP program went to see the Broadway musical ‘Memphis’ at the Shubert Theater. For many it was their first Broadway show. Here’s what a few of our students had to say about their experience:
"I absolutely loved the trip! The play was amazing."
"It was amazing! My first time ever being at a play and I could honestly say that I enjoyed it. It was a great way to influence me beyond my understanding. I hope we get to have another Broadway trip."
"I’ve never been to a Broadway show before and watching the outstanding performance was amazing; I couldn't have asked for a better start to my first Broadway experience!"
"I was really intrigued with the story line and overall how it ended. I enjoyed the trip a lot and would really want to do again."
"I deeply enjoyed the Memphis play. It truly opened my eyes to how people can open their hearts to others. The musical and dancing captured my heart. Would love to see it one last time while still standing on this earth."
On September 24th, students in the ASAP program visited the Botanical Gardens in Bronx, NY. While there, the students toured the Edible Garden which features numerous vegetable gardens and displays. They also took a trolley tour of the grounds which included the Conservatory, the Rose Garden, and a garden that was designed by Martha Stewart! Here’s what some of the students thought about the trip:
"The botanical garden was an awesome trip. Besides the trip itself where we got to see a lot of things, I also got the opportunity to make a new and awesome friend. So overall it turned out great and I hope to have more trips in the future."
"Going to botanical gardens was a great trip. I enjoyed it very much; I got a chance to see all different types of plants which was very educational. If you want to be a florist or botanist this is the place to go learn about the plants that are out there. I am so glad I went!"
Queensborough students in the Accelerated Study in Associate Programs (ASAP) cheered and clapped as Mayor Michael Bloomberg and Matthew Goldstein, Chancellor of the City University of New York (CUNY) lauded theirs– as well as their sister community colleges’ accomplishments –at a graduation recognition ceremony for ASAP students held at the Borough of Manhattan Community College (BMCC) last week.
Of the initial cohort of 228 students enrolled in Queensborough’s Accelerated Study in Associate Programs (ASAP) for the fall 2007 semester, 60% are projected to graduate by August 2010, a significantly higher graduation rate than the historical three year graduation rate at Queensborough, ten percent higher than the original target, and one of the two highest graduation rates of all of the CUNY ASAP programs.
Bobbi Brauer, Director of ASAP at Queensborough, commented that, "The many wonderful advantages that this program provides, including individualized attention, free textbooks and Metrocards, as well as tuition support, have provided our students the foundation they need in order to realize their potential."
Just one example of such a student is Fatima Nisa Ali, ’09, who graduated in two years with her Associate degree in Liberal Arts and Sciences. She was on the Dean’s List every semester and has continued this trend as an English major at Queens College. Fatima—a passionate scholar of English literature— is the recipient of the ASAP Transfer Scholarship, Queens College Transfer Scholarship and the Robert D. Crozier Memorial Award for outstanding achievement in literature and writing. She was also listed in the spring 2009 edition of Who’s Who Among Students in Colleges and Universities. At Queensborough, Fatima enjoyed submitting her poetry to the College’s online literary magazine, QueensZine and participated in service learning activities on campus. "ASAP took the emotional stress out of going from high school to college and was a huge help financially," said Fatima, a life-long resident of Fresh Meadows, Queens, who aspires to one day become a college professor.
"ASAP is close to my heart because I have always been certain of its power to change lives," said Eduardo J. Martí, Ph.D., President of Queensborough Community College. "In fact, I have modeled other successful programs, such as our Freshman Academies, on its personalized approach toward academic advisement and student support."
The ASAP program, sponsored by CUNY with funding from Mayor Michael Bloomberg and the citywide Center for Economic Opportunity, was implemented at Queensborough and its five sister CUNY community colleges in the fall of 2007 to provide qualified students with tuition support and focused academic services to encourage student retention and advance graduation rates. One of the outstanding features of the program are the ASAP staff who regularly advise students on academic and extra-curricular issues, as well as outside problems that may be affecting their overall academic performance. ASAP students have reported that the extra support is extremely helpful in fostering team-learning, good friendships and helpful peer support.
Queensborough, located on a picturesque 37-acre site in Bayside, Queens, offers a rich liberal arts and science curriculum, as well as career and pre-professional courses. Over half of the faculty holds doctorates compared with 21% of faculty in other community colleges nationwide. Comprising one of the most diverse populations of any college in the U.S., more than 15,000 students pursue Associates degrees or Certificate programs and another 10,000 students of all ages attend continuing education programs. Among the campus’s prized cultural resources are the Kupferberg Holocaust Resource Center, the QCC Art Gallery, and the Queensborough Performing Arts Center (QPAC), created to stimulate ideas and intellectual curiosity while exposing students and the public to culture and the arts. Please visit our website at www.qcc.cuny.edu.
On April 26th, the EKO Arts team came back to join the ASAP students for another fantastic afternoon and performance. All activities were centered on "Exploring the place where serendipity, opportunity and planning intersect," which is the main theme of "Six Degrees of Separation", a play by John Guare.
After some warm-up exercises led by the EKO Arts teaching artists, students were separated into three groups; the actors, the singers, and the dancers. Each group went to a separate area to practice. One and a half hours later, everyone came together again. The actors performed a monologue from the play, touching on how fears can motivate and paralyze at the same time. The singers sang ‘Reach Out and Touch’, by Diana Ross, a song about extending yourself to others. Finally, the dancers performed an interpretive dance showing how movement is reactive, and how everyone’s path is affected by someone else’s. As the culminating performance, all the groups reunited to sing ‘Lean on Me’ by Bill Withers. The afternoon was truly inspiring and fun.
April 1st 2:00-4:00pm Rm: TBD - Information Meeting for the Business Bowl Competition. Any student interested in competing in the Business Bowl in April, should attend (NEW)