President's Report for March 2022
Enrollment Management Update
Fall 2022 recruitment began February 16 with a virtual admissions information session. A series of events have been confirmed from February to June, including virtual accepted student information sessions, admissions virtual webinars, academic program specific sessions, and virtual and in-person visits to high schools and community-based organizations. University Application Processing Center has provided 4 recommendation files with a total of 6702 Freshmen and 152 transfer applicants. The Office of Admissions and Recruitment, and New Student engagement started to provide in-person services along with virtual opportunities for students and school counselors to connect with the staff.
The Office of Academy Advisement is preparing for another enrollment cycle as they finalize advisement caseloads for Spring 2022. They will be advising students through in-person and virtual platforms. Peak Advisement for continuing students will begin in March followed by preparations shortly after to begin advising and registration incoming Fall 2022. Academy Advisement will Host two sessions with faculty and department chairs to review curriculum with the advisement community on March 2nd and March 9th. On Friday, March 4th, Academy Advisement will host student support departments to provide a platform to discuss how their services support students can work with advisers.
The QCC Men’s Basketball team finished 2nd in CUNYAC in the regular season. CUNYAC Tournament began on Wednesday, February 16th, while the Region XV Tournament began on Tuesday, February 22nd. In addition, the Indoor Track & Field CUNYAC Championships take place on Sunday, February 27th. Lastly, please join us in congratulating QCC students Khari Ojeda-Harvey, who will be announced as the 2021-22 CUNYAC Men’s Basketball Player of the Year, while Preston Harts and Rohan Singh will be named to the CUNYAC All-Star Team.
Student Support Services/Resources
- Faculty and staff are asked to encourage our students to avail themselves of the valuable and free resources through the QCC Advocacy Resource Center. Services provided include (but not limited to) public benefits screening, financial coaching, legal assistance, tax preparation services, housing assistance, food pantry referrals, and more.
- Free Tax Preparation for QCC Students! Representatives from the New York State Department of Taxation and Finance will help students prepare and e-file their income tax return virtually during a webinar Zoom session at no cost. Zoom sessions will be held every Wednesday and Friday, beginning January 28, 2022 and ending on April 15, 2022. Pre-registration is required. As such, students should call the Advocacy Resource Center (formerly Single Stop) at (718) 631-6347 or e-mail ARC@qcc.cuny.edu. Session days and times are as follows: Wednesdays between 11:00 am - 2:00 pm, Wednesdays between 3:00 pm - 6:00 pm, Fridays between 9:30 am - 12:30 pm, and Fridays between 1:30 pm – 4:00 pm.
- The Finch College Alumni Community College Transfer Scholarship application period is now open for all eligible female students. The scholarships, worth $5000, are awarded to second-year female community college students who will graduate from QCC at the conclusion of spring 2021 and transfer to a four-year university for fall 2021. For additional information, including eligibility requirements and application deadline, visit their website. The deadline to apply is May 22, 2022.
- The 2022 Abbey Duncan Brownfield Scholarship Program is now accepting applications. The program provides financial support to students pursuing careers in the brownfield industry in New York City. For more information, including eligibility requirements and application deadline, please visit The NYC Brownfield Partnership website. The deadline to apply is April 12, 2022.
- The New York State Transfer and Articulation Association (NYSTAA) Scholarship is available for students who anticipate they will complete their degree by August 2022 and enroll in a select four-year university for Fall 2022. The deadline to apply is March 23, 2022. For full details, visit NYSTAA website.
- Emergency funding is available to students who face a financial crisis that puts at risk their continued enrollment toward their QCC degree. Supported through a grant from The Carroll and Milton Petrie Foundation, the funds provide one-time, emergency grants to students in good standing with short-term financial emergencies to enable them to remain in school, rather than being forced to leave or drop out. Please refer students with short-term financial emergencies to Ms. Amawati Gonesh via e-mail at AGonesh@qcc.cuny.edu. Additional information can be found online at our QCC Scholarship Website.
- The Senator Jose Peralta NYS DREAM Act (DREAM Act) allows undocumented and other eligible students to apply for New York State financial aid. The NYS DREAM Act application is used to determine student eligibility under the provisions of the NYS DREAM Act. Students who meet the NYS DREAM Act's eligibility requirements for high school attendance, high school completion, in-state SUNY or CUNY tuition, and citizenship or immigration status will be able to apply for one or more NYS student financial aid programs. Students who qualify under the NYS DREAM Act can separately apply for NYS student financial aid programs. The program is administered by the New York State Higher Education Services Corporation.
- CUNY continues its partnership with The Dream. US Scholarship Program to assist undocumented students in obtaining scholarships. The Dream.US Scholarship Program provides college scholarships to highly motivated undocumented students who entered the United States as minors under the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) or Temporary Protect Status (TPS), and who, without financial assistance, cannot afford a college education. All funding is provided by private donations to The Dream.US organization. Scholarships are available to currently enrolled high school students and community college students who will be completing their degrees by the end of the 2021 -2022 academic year. The annual application period to award scholarships for the fall 2022 cohort opened on November 1, 2021 and the deadline is February 28, 2022. Please refer students to visit Dream US Scholarship Program to apply.
- The Belle Zeller Scholarship Trust Fund is now available for eligible students to apply. The award shall consist of the yearly undergraduate tuition for in-state students as set by the university. For additional information, including eligibility requirements and deadline date, please visit their website. The deadline to apply is March 4, 2022.
- The American Chemical Society (ACS) Scholars Program awards renewable scholarships of up to $5,000 to underrepresented minority students who want to enter the fields of chemistry or chemistry-related fields, such as environmental science, toxicology and chemical technology. High school seniors and college freshmen, sophomores, or juniors are eligible to apply. The ACS Scholars Program was established in 1994 to attract African American, Hispanic and American Indian students considered underrepresented in the chemical sciences by the National Science Foundation to pursue careers in the field. The program also aims to help build awareness of the value and rewards associated with careers in chemistry and assist students in acquiring skills and credentials needed for success. The deadline to apply is March 1, 2022.
- The 2022 Student Government Elections will take place online beginning Wednesday, April 6th through Wednesday, April 13th. Please encourage students to consider running for a position. For more information, interested students can contact Ms. Gisela Rivera, Director of Student Leadership & Development, at GRivera@qcc.cuny.edu or Mr. Raymond Volel, Student Life Specialist, RVolel@qcc.cuny.edu in the Office of Student Activities.
Office of Diversity, Equity, and Inclusivity
The Office of Academic Affairs received a CUNY OAA mini-grant to pilot mentoring for mid-career women and faculty of color. Dr. Mangino matched the grant funds to allow for membership in the National Center for Faculty Diversity and Development. This is a wonderful and impactful achievement for Queensborough, as our faculty will now have access to a vast array of support services for publication and thriving in academia. The Faculty Fellow for DEI, Dr. Kerri-Ann M. Smith, will manage institutional membership with the support of Interim Dean Dr. Margot Edlin and Interim Director of CETL Dr. Meghmala Tarafdar. The campus launch will be on February 18; all faculty members are invited to take full advantage of the many privileges that membership affords.
Dr. Smith will host President of Guttman Community College, Dr. Larry Johnson Jr., for the first Thriving in Academia Lecture for the spring 2022 semester on February 18 at noon via Zoom. Dr. Johnson’s talk, “Rising Above Imposter Syndrome,” will highlight his own experience as he moved through various ranks of academe. Information can be found at www.qcc.cuny.ed/dei.
Dr. Smith continues to collaborate with faculty on the anti-racist guidelines for disciplines and with librarian Prof. Constance Williams on a LibGuide to support the guidelines. Dr. Smith continues to build OAA’s resources through texts, and the library will catalogue and manage the purchased texts focusing on anti-racism and pedagogy and other topics in diversity, equity, and inclusivity.
The ACUE Inclusive Teaching for Equitable Learning (ITEL) course will launch for Cohort 2 on February 23. Dr. Smith facilitated last semester and QCC had exceptional results, showing great improvement in our faculty’s knowledge, confidence, and awareness of DEI concepts and issues. We look forward to a continued partnership with ACUE for four more years and encourage and invite faculty to participate as cohorts open up.
Office of Center for Excellence in Teaching and learning (CETL) and the Office of Educational Technology (OET)
The Center for Excellence in Teaching & Learning (CETL) will be hosting a series of Common Read events from March 21 to April 1 in collaboration with the Kupferberg Holocaust Center. These events are based on the book-length prose poem Citizen: An American Lyric by Jamaican-born poet and Professor Claudia Rankine. In this multi-genre work, Rankin examines the effects of racism in today’s society from microaggressions to overt attacks. Common Read is a high impact practice that promotes integrative learning across the curriculum through multi-disciplinary approaches to a common text. The events provide an opportunity for increased social and academic engagement while supporting the learning that takes place in the classroom. More information about Common Read is available here.
The Office of Educational Technology
Five instructors have successfully completed the Online Teaching Essential (OTE) course. The OTE course is a University-wide course managed by the School of Professional Studies (SPS – CUNY), and it is a critical component of the University’s ongoing efforts to support our faculty during this challenging time. Since 2020, ninety-six QCC instructors have completed this course.
The Blackboard upgrade was successfully completed on December 31, 2021, at 6:00 A.M. CUNY migrated our Blackboard hosting environment to Blackboard SaaS, a cloud computing environment. This migration introduced a new Content Editor to Blackboard. We invite the community to become familiar with the new Editor. Below are two quick resources on using the new Content Editor:
Resources for the new Content Editor are also available on the CUNY Blackboard Resources site, under User Guides / Getting Started, accessible from www.cuny.edu/blackboard or the Tech Resources/Help tab within Blackboard.
We strongly recommend all faculty to visit the OET web site to see a complete listing of all upcoming Distance Learning Webinars and Professional Development Opportunities. Currently, the Office of Educational Technology is offering Drop-in Virtual Office Hours through Blackboard Collaborate. Faculty can join the OET Virtual Office to speak with an IT Academic Specialist, Monday - Friday, 8:30 A.M. - 12:00 P.M. and 2:00 P.M. – 5:00 P.M.
For an in-person appointment, please contact firstname.lastname@example.org
Office of Grants and Sponsored Programs
Grants Awarded – January 21, 2022 – February 18, 2022
- Blackstone Charitable Foundation: $4,000 (additional funding), Palmer, Sandra, Mooney, Christine, Ulrich, Mark, & Murolo, Sebastian (Ben); “Blackstone LaunchPad Ideas Competition”
Continuing Education and Workforce Development
- NYC Department of Youth and Community Development: $385,740, Hsu, Hui-Yin & Conkling, Lori; “Train and Earn Hemodialysis and 5G”
- CUNY Office of Research, Interdisciplinary Research Grant Program: $39,936, Damas, Marie Chantale & Jizhong Xiao (CCNY); “AISat: An Artificial Intelligence (AI) Satellite Imagery powered CubeSat for Science applications”
- Smithsonian Astrophysical Observatory (SAO), CHANDRS Xray Center Research Visitor Program: $22,564, Bellovary, Jillian; “Verifying a New Method to Discover AGN in Dwarf Galaxies”
Office of Continuing Education and Workforce Development (CEWD)
QCC CEWD (lead of the CUNY Community Colleges Consortium, CUNYCCC) will host a series of kickoff events starting Feb. 15 and 16, supported by U.S. Department of Labor Strengthening Community Colleges Consortium Grant. CUNYCCC will offer 16 workforce training programs to help unemployed, underemployed, or incumbent workers to upskill and/or reskill. All these training programs will lead to industry recognized credentials and credits for prior learning/or transfer credits (per CUNY Policy and College Evaluation).
QCC CEWD-led CUNYCCC’s proposal entitled “Co-Designing an Integrated Accelerated Pathways Model with Employers and the Workforce Development System: Driving System Changes through the CUNY Community Colleges Consortium” will be presented at 102nd Annual Conference of American Association of Community Colleges, New York, New York, May 2, 2022.
QCC CEWD is collaborating with Asian American Federation and Catholic Charities to offer bridge programs (HSE, ESL, 21st century workplace skills) and workforce training programs to their clients, including low income immigrants and out-of-school youths (age 18-29 year-olds).
CEWD and 1199 SEIU Patient Care Technician Training Cohort was completed; 100% of the CEWD students are Nationally Certified Patient Care Technicians. All have obtained employment, received promotions from their current employers, or are interviewing for new opportunities.
Office of Research
- Research Notification Forms: In order to ensure research compliance with CUNY and funding agencies, and to notify faculty of research opportunities, the QCC Office of Research is maintaining records of faculty and students engaging in any type of research activities (funded or unfunded, with or without students) each semester. Please compete this brief Research Notification form by February 28.
- Following CUNY’s Research Policy, faculty working with non-QCC research students (including High School students) are required to submit a signed Independent Research Agreement application to the Office of Research prior to beginning the work. The application requires approval from the Department Chair and the Provost. Please note that the application is a fillable document. You must download the PDF in order to view it as fillable. Please email the completed application to Dr. Sharon Lall-Ramnarine (email@example.com), the Research Agreements Point Person for the campus.
- QCC has an Enhanced Institutional Membership to the Council on Undergraduate Research (CUR). Faculty and staff are encouraged to register to access CUR member benefits.
- The Office of Research is compiling a faculty research/expertise directory. Complete this brief faculty expertise form by February 28, 2022, to be included. All faculty are encouraged to participate regardless of whether they are currently research active.
- Responsible Conduct of Research Workshops: Friday, February 25, at 10:00 a.m.; Thursday, March 10, at 12:00 p.m.; Tuesday, April 12, at 9 a.m.; Monday, May 9, at 3:00 p.m. All faculty members and students who are involved in a research project on campus are required to complete the RCR CITI online training and the in-person/synchronous workshop. The workshops will be presented by the Research Integrity Officer, Dr. Sharon Lall-Ramnarine. RSVP here.
- Undergraduate Research Brown Bag Lunch Discussions:
- Wednesday, March 9: 12:00 p.m. – 1:00 p.m. on Zoom: Assoc. Professor Aviva Geismar, MFA (Dept. of Health, Physical Education & Dance) and Asst. Professor Sarbani Ghoshal, MPH, PhD (Dept. of Biological Sciences & Geology) will present.
- Wednesday, April 13th: 12:00 p.m. – 1:00 p.m. on Zoom: Asst. Professor Bianca Sosnovski, MPhil, PhD (Dept. of Mathematics &Computer Science) and Asst. Professor Jodi Van Der Horn-Gibson, PhD (Dept. of Communication, Theatre, & Media Production) will present.
- The 2022 Spring Student Symposium will be held virtually on Friday, May 6, from 10:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m. Please save the date. The call for abstracts will be sent out soon. Abstracts will be due on April 1.
STEM Tuition Waiver for the 2022 Winter Session
Over the Winter 2022 session, 285 STEM Tuition Waivers were offered and 257 STEM courses were actually taken; 94% of the courses were completed, for a total of 667.5 credits. This equates to $140,175 in tuition costs. Of those who completed their courses, 72% received an A, 18% received a B, and 7% received a C, with the remaining 3% receiving grades of D or F.
Funding will be available for summer 2022, which normally has even higher participation.
Office of Institutional Advancement
The QCC Fund received a $50,000 gift to establish a scholarship fund in honor of Caryn Giananti’s late parents, Barbara and Harry Sperber. Over the next two (2) years, scholarships will be awarded to prospective and continuing part-time Queensborough students enrolled in certificate or associate programs. The scholarship will help cover the cost of their tuition, fees, course-required texts and materials, and other expenses that will help to keep them continuously enrolled and engaged with their studies.
A Tribute to John P. Bevilacqua
The Athletic Scholarship Award Fund is accepting donations in honor of John Bevilacqua, Dr. Mangino’s late partner, who passed away last month. The Fund supports Queensborough student-athletes, who meet financial and/or academic prerequisites, by providing them additional opportunities to succeed and advance, on and off the playing field. To learn more about John’s remarkable career and to make a donation in his honor, please click here.
Annual Fund Campaign – Spring Appeal
Your donation to Queensborough’s Annual Fund will make both an immediate and life-long impact on our students who continue to grapple with the pandemic. Faculty and staff may choose to support faculty development, merit scholarships, the QCC Food Pantry, the Coronavirus Community Fund, or another key service or program that resonates deep within them.
Click here to make an online donation to Queensborough’s Annual Fund spring appeal. Please make checks payable to the QCC Fund, Inc. and mail to Queensborough Community College, Office of Institutional Advancement, Room A-508, 222-05 56th Avenue, Bayside, NY 11364.
Thank you for your continued support of our students!
Architectural Designs - The Engineering Technology Department (Virtual)
A collection of architectural models embracing the talent and creativity of the students enrolled in the Engineering Design courses here at QCC. This exhibition explores the techniques used to develop these models and architectural construction under the guidance of Professor Craig Weber.
The following exhibition is being rescheduled for the Fall 2022 semester:
Yaka and Suku: The Bourgeois Collection
The Bourgeois Collection is a comprehensive overview featuring sculpture from the Kwango region of southwestern Zaire (now Congo). The sculpture exhibited focuses on the Yaka and Suku culture and represents traditional practices from the region such as initiation, divination, and commemorative objects used in performance ritual. The exhibition is enhanced with educational text, field photography and film detailing the significance of the work. Alongside the Bourgeois collection, works are on loan from various international private collections, as well as a selection from the Gallery’s permanent collection. The exhibition will feature a digital walkthrough later in the semester.
QCC Art Gallery Press published a book for the Spring 2023 exhibition:
Spirits of the Red Savanna: Art and Culture of the Bamana People of Mali
Spirits of the Red Savanna comprehensively discusses the art and culture of the Bamana people of Mali. They are known for their remarkable masks, statues, textiles, and other art forms which are used in ritual and ceremonies. These are described in detail in the text of this volume. The book contains numerous field photographs and a catalogue illustrating many of the art objects. An extensive bibliography is also provided. Spirits of the Red Savana was reviewed in Mansa Kibaru, issue 73, published by the Mande Studies Association (see attached pdf). This publication can be purchased on Amazon or in the Art Gallery.
The Gallery’s fundraising efforts have raised $19,780 towards the endowment.
- The Gallery continues its internship program with in-person as well as virtual opportunities, demonstrating how the Gallery promotes undergraduate research by providing unique opportunities for the student to develop their practical experience in art administration. The participating individuals continue to assist with the documentation of the permanent collection and incoming donations.
- Currently, the Gallery has two (2) interns from the Gallery and Museum Studies program from the Department of Art & Design. Interns are assisting with documentation of the collection and incoming donations and inputting art into the permanent collection database.
- The Gallery’s in-person internship with the Flushing International High School resumes this Spring semester.
- Virtual internships continue with a partnership between the Art Gallery and Bayside High School.
Kupferberg Holocaust Center
KHC ORIGIHNAL EXHIBITION:
The Concentration Camps: Inside the Nazi System of Incarceration and Genocide
On View and Online
This original exhibition at the Harriet & Kenneth Kupferberg Holocaust Center surveys the scope and brutality of the Nazi system of incarceration and genocide, underscoring the horrific consequences of intolerance, racism, and authoritarianism. In addition to the exhibit’s text, images, and artifacts, personal testimonies from local Holocaust survivors offer painful insights into these excruciating landscapes of degradation and dehumanization. This exhibit is curated by Dr. Cary Lane, KHC 2020-21 Curator-in-Residence and Associate Professor of English at QCC.
Human Rights and the Museum Series
Returning What Was Taken: How Museums Approach Repatriation
Sam Sackeroff, Lerman-Neubauer Associate Curator at the Jewish Museum
Erin Thompson, Professor of Art Crimes at John Jay College of Criminal Justice CUNY
Tuesday, March 8, 2022 at 2:00 p.m. EST
Gendered Aspects of LGBTQIA+ Experiences during the Holocaust
Dr. Danny Sexton, Associate Professor of English at QCC
Dr. Jake Newsome, Public Historian of LGBTQIA+ Past and Author
Wednesday, March 16, 2022 at 12:00 p.m. EDT
QCC Common Read Event
Fighting Off the Weight of Nonexistence: A Conversation with Claudia Rankine, author of Citizen: An American Lyric
Wednesday, March 23, 2022 at 12:00 p.m. EDT
For all public program information visit: http://khc.qcc.cuny.edu/events-2/
PLEASE NOTE: All programming will be held virtually for Spring 2022.
Visit the Education page of the KHC website at khc.qcc.cuny.edu/education for a complete listing of our comprehensive library guides and to view recorded events from our past NEH colloquia.
Queensborough Performing Arts Center (QPAC)
Thursday, March 24, 2022 – 7:00 p.m. ET - FREE
QPAC Live! Presents Brian Wilson & Theresa Sareo: What the World Needs Now! Part 2
Back by popular demand, NYC-based singers Theresa Sareo and Brian Wilson have combined entertainment careers that span over two decades. Coming from classical backgrounds, they each found success with Broadway touring companies and regional theater (namely, Cats for Brian, 42nd Street for Theresa) and regularly perform the Cabaret circuits in New York and throughout the country. Dubbed "The Kips Bay Captain and Tennille" they have built an extensive repertoire of classic duets, pop hits and Broadway favorites that showcase their versatile and impressive vocal ranges, making them a popular, in-demand singing team. Theresa and Brian return with What the World Needs Now Part 2... For QPAC Live! Followed by Q&A.\
Gotta Dance Kids:
March 12, 2022 – 11:00 a.m. – 12:00 p.m.
March 19, 2022 – 11:00 a.m. – 12:00 p.m.
March 26, 2022 – 11:00 a.m. – 12:00 p.m.
April 2, 2022 – 11:00 a.m. – 12:00 p.m.
Wednesday, March 9, 2022 – 12:30 p.m.
Wednesday, March 16, 2022 – 12:30 p.m.
Wednesday, March 23, 2022 – 12:30 p.m.
Office of Marketing and Communication
The Digital Home of Queensborough’s Lucille A. Bova Food Pantry
Is Being Updated and Its Mission Expanded
Food insecurity is a heart-breaking problem for far too many of our students who must work long hours to pay for their living expenses while attending classes. Despite their hard work, these same students still face food insecurity, compounded now by the pandemic. A survey recently released by Temple University’s Hope Center for College Community and Justice found that 50% of our students worried their food would run out before they could afford more, 38% could not afford to buy balanced meals, and 39% of survey respondents at Queensborough Community College experienced low or very low levels of food security. The Division of Marketing and Communication is working with the Committee on Food Insecurity to revamp the Food Pantry page on Queensborough’s website. It now includes a partnership with the College’s Advocacy Resource Center (A.R.C.) and the ability to donate directly to the Food Pantry.
The Division’s video production team is also working with the committee to produce a promotional video to raise awareness for the pantry. The video will feature student leaders and testimonials.
Queensborough Celebrates Black History Month
Much planning and work went into (and continues) on the College’s celebration and honoring of the 52nd annual Black History Month. Creative Services has worked with both student and faculty organizations such as ASAP, the SGA and the Black Faculty & Staff Association (BFSA), to promote BHM-related events throughout the month of February. The Black History Month page on the College’s website was updated and expanded with new events and video conversations. A comprehensive promotional strategy including the weekly newsletter, In The Know, the student newsletter, and our social media channels, was planned and executed.
Queensborough Joins the National Center for
Faculty Diversity and Development
Queensborough has begun the process to establish institutional membership with the National Center for Faculty Diversity and Development. This outstanding achievement for the College was made possible thanks to a partnership between Dr. Kerri Ann Smith, Faculty Fellow for Diversity Equity and Inclusion in the Office of Academic Affairs and the Office of the President. Queensborough will be the only community college member of this prestigious organization. The National Center for Faculty Development & Diversity (NCFDD) is an independent professional development, training, and mentoring community of faculty, postdocs, & graduate students from over 450 colleges and universities. Creative and Web Services has been assisting faculty liaisons of the NCFDD in arranging for the announcement of Queensborough’s membership and is developing both an internal and external recognition campaign. Membership in NCFDD gives Queensborough a chance to pilot a mentoring program for mid-career faculty, training them as mentors while supporting their journey to senior faculty, then having them serve as acolytes for junior faculty members, going forward. We are assisting in developing a digital presence for Queensborough’s chapter on the College website.
Recruitment Initiative to Promote the College’s
Medical Assistant Degree Program
We are in the beginning stages of working with Dr. Punita Bhansali on an enrollment/
recruitment-focused project to film some alumni videos to promote the Medical Assistant Program, a program of which many students are unaware. These videos will be used on our website, YouTube page, and across our social media channels. Our hope is that this project can be expanded to include an external advertising campaign as well.
Student Communications: Using Two-way Texting to Reach Students More Effectively
We are currently expanding our ability to communicate with students using the two-way texting software Signal Vine. Signal Vine will help us drive measurable gains in enrollment and retention, while effectively decreasing barriers between the student and the completion of their education. Initial implementation of the software has been in support of the Queensborough Academies and ASAP, and looking ahead the software will be used to provide effective communications between students and other offices such as College Discovery and Financial Services. The student communications team has partnered with the Division of Student Affairs to explain the benefits of this technology, assist with implementation, and train student-facing offices to use the platform and utilize best practices.
Queensborough’s 61st Commencement Ceremony
Student Communications is currently beginning its outreach to the Queensborough Class of ‘22 Graduates. The ceremony will take place on Friday, June 3 and will be the first in-person graduation ceremony since 2019 - the last Commencement prior to the Covid-19 pandemic. Susan Agin, Executive Director of QPAC, is leading the planning for this year’s celebration. We are all looking forward to celebrating the outstanding achievements of graduates, and once again doing so in person. More details to follow!
Biology Professor Monica Trujillo Highlighted for Her Contributions to Discovering New Covid Variants in Wastewater
Queensborough’s own Dr. Monica Trujillo was part of a research team that worked with the New York City Department of Environmental Protection in identifying the early presence of the Omicron variant of Covid in the city’s wastewater. The discovery of the variant has led to differing theories on its origin and the implications this may have on the origin for other Covid variants such as Omicron.
Her work on the team of researchers received wide acclaim and media coverage including features in The New York Times, Science Daily, Yahoo News, and many others.
Now, Trujillo is ‘thrilled’ to be back in the lab with students. She has presented her microbiology students with a project related to her work in wastewater, they will safely identify the bacteria present in the different wastewater samples using molecular biology tools. She believes it is crucial for science students to have their independent research experience.
“Our conversations spark questions and critical thinking. It is a process so important to share with students and bring it back into the classroom.”
American Chemical Society (NYS) Selects Chemistry Professor Kevin Kolack as Winner of the Outstanding Two-Year College Teaching Award
Dr. Kevin Kolack, a Professor of Chemistry at Queensborough for 10 years, has been recognized by the American Chemical Society (NYS) for his “dedication in training the next generation of chemistry professionals”. The virtual award ceremony took place on January 29.
Professor Kolack is self-described “Renaissance Man.”. Throughout graduate school at the University of Indiana he was a firefighter, ambulance driver, professional puppeteer, and competed at the Olympic level in small-bore rifle, all while flying to New York where he took acting classes.
Regarding his teaching philosophy and current position, he shared his belief that “CUNY has an important mission, specifically community colleges, and especially Queensborough. Here, faculty are more than teachers. We are here for students who battle time. We have their backs when they need support services, whether it’s counseling, the food pantry, or tutoring.”
The editor of more than 400 peer-reviewed publications, Dr. Kolack, who earned a B.S. in Chemistry at The University of Virginia and a Ph.D. at Indiana University, is the lead author of the 3rd-5th editions of "Introductory General Chemistry Experiments".
Professor Kolack will (hopefully) be our next “Humans of Queensborough” subject and our first faculty member to be featured in the series.
Queensborough Recognizes Former President Howard Lapidus
Howard Lapidus served with distinction at Queensborough Community College for more than 35 years. President Kurt Schmeller asked Mr. Lapidus to come to Queensborough as Special Counsel to him in 1970 to help address many issues impacting the college community. He soon found himself serving as College Labor Designee, College Affirmative Action Officer, College Title IX Officer, College Records Officer and co-chaired the committee that drafted the initial Queensborough Governance Plan.
He was appointed an Assistant. Dean in 1972 and, over the ensuing decades, became the Dean of Staff Relations, Dean of Administration, and the Senior Vice President. Twice he co-chaired the Middle States Self-Study Steering Committee at the College and, as a prelude to the 1990 report, he formulated and spearheaded a plan to enable the College to establish for the first time a Student Union building at the campus.
He was appointed interim President at Queensborough in 1999 and served in that capacity through the 1999-2000 academic year. He presided at a roundtable on The Role of the Interim President at the 1999 Middle States annual meeting. During his presidency, he secured funding that allowed every faculty member to have access to computer usage in their own offices. In 2000, incoming President Eduardo Marti asked Lapidus to stay on as his deputy and Chief Operating Officer. In 2006, Lapidus authored the Long-Range Plan for Queensborough entitled Realizing the Possibilities, which was approved by the College Academic Senate.
Professor Lapidus continues his contributions to Queensborough as a Professor Emeritus in the Business Department.
Queensborough to be featured in Two Upcoming
Episodes of CUNY’s Urban U Series
Queensborough’s Dance Department will be featured in the end of the March episode of CUNY’s Urban U web series. Urban U is a CUNY-TV magazine show about CUNY students, faculty, alumni, and programs. The stories highlight the quality and rewards of a CUNY education, one that enables people to achieve great things. Additionally, the Julio Salas episode of Queensborough’s Humans of Queensborough series will run in the April issue. Julio is a 2018 graduate of Queensborough now studying Human Biology, Health, and Society at Cornell University.
An interview is scheduled with Assistant Professor Charissa Che, who is serving as the Chair of the Two-Year College English Association Conference at the beginning of March. The conference highlights the important work that is taking place in English Studies at two-year colleges. She's done a lot of great work on making this conference come to life and providing a space for scholars and practitioners to reflect upon their experiences teaching online during the pandemic, and it will be a great showcase for Queensborough.