This year at CSI, Brian Kateman and Michael Maslankowski have each earned the prestigious title of being a Watson Fellow, a prestigious paid summer internship program offering mentoring and lifelong contacts to talented freshmen and sophomores at CUNY and independent city colleges who demonstrate exceptional academic promise and outstanding leadership skills.

Brian Kateman is a sophomore at CSI where he majors in Biology and Psychology, hoping, eventually, to become a professor, psychologist, or a conservation biologist. He is an ambassador, biology tutor, and Outward Bound orientation group leader for the Macaulay Honors College; he is a Peer Educator for CSI’s Health and Wellness Center; and he currently volunteers at the American Museum of Natural History and Project Hospitality. Brian is spending his first Watson summer interning at Echoing Green, an organization that works for social change.

Michael Maslankowski is a spohomore majoring in Cinema Studies and English at CSI with strong interests in film and writing. Michael serves as an orientation leader at CSI and a mentor for the CSI Office of New Student Orientation/CLUE/Pluralism and Diversity. In addition, he is an Adult Day Service mentor for the Melissa Riggio Higher Education Program. In his first summer as a Watson Fellow, Michael is interning at the NYC Department of Cultural Affairs.

Previous College of Staten Island recipients include 2000 Fellowship recipients Kenyatta Carter, Yekaterina Lushpenko, and Tara Lynch; 2001 recipient Kristine Gansico; 2002 recipient Elie Jarrouge; and 2004 recipients April Boland, Melody Messina, and Khadijah Rentas.

Established by The Thomas J. Watson Foundation in 1999, the fellowship operates on the principle that “talent is broadly distributed but only selectively developed.” Watson Fellows have their pick of coveted job placements over three consecutive summers in not-for-profit agencies, business organizations, and in government service that give them a chance to grow and develop interpersonal skills, and gain self-confidence in a variety of professional settings.

A series of weekly seminars further enhances the learning experience by encouraging debate and interaction, and also provides an opportunity for Watson Fellows to share stories about their work experiences. Visits to cultural institutions like Shakespeare in the Park and the Metropolitan Museum of Art enable students to discover New York’s free summer offerings. Every Watson Fellow receives a generous stipend as well as a laptop computer to complete their assignments.

Twelve colleges in all, including the College of Staten Island, compete annually for 15 Jeannette K. Watson Fellowship openings; each school may nominate up to four candidates.

For more information about The Jeannette K. Watson Fellowship or to receive an application packet, contact Geoff Hempill, PhD at 718.982.2302.

[L-R] CSI sophomores Michael Maslankowski and Brian Kateman are the College's newest Watson Fellows.