The Macaulay Honors College at CSI hosted an orientation recently for its incoming class. The 38 new students enjoyed an opportunity to see their new campus and meet each other and members of the College community.

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One of the new students, New Dorp High School grad Tom Rodberg, when asked about how he feels about being a part of Macaulay, said, “I’m extremely excited.” Rodberg, who was CEO of the New Dorp team that won the 2010 U.S. Network of Virtual Enterprise National Business Plan Competition, said “I can’t wait to get into all the opportunities that CSI has to offer at Macaulay, including study abroad, internships, and research. I’ve already spoken to plenty of professors who all have research opportunities in physics and engineering.”

Another incoming Macaulay freshman, Elaina Lei, from Staten Island Technical High School, also commented on the research potential at CSI, “I feel that [Macaulay] is going to give me a lot of opportunity to study outside of my field [of biology].” Lei, a multi-talented young woman, has many interests. She has excelled in science competitions, swim meets, and as a violinist.

Patrick Granata, an exceptional scholar-athlete from North Shore High School in Nassau County, who plans to play on CSI’s basketball team, added that “It’s an honor and I was happy that I was able to get into such a prestigious program. I feel that it’s going to help me to reach my full potential.”

The students’ day began in the Macaulay Honors College lounge with an ice-breaking game called “Get to Know You Bingo.” The freshmen then toured the campus, stopping at the Library, the Center for the Arts, and the many student service offices.

A brunch followed, where CSI President Dr. Tomás D. Morales greeted the students, encouraging them to take advantage of the many facets of the Macaulay experience, such as developing close research ties with faculty, studying abroad, and providing service to the community.

At the brunch, the students also heard from Macaulay Honors College Director Dr. Deborah Popper, who called on them to learn as much as they can and develop creative and critical thinking skills so they can affect positive change on the world, once they leave CSI.

Lisa French, a Macaulay advisor, and MHC coordinator Anita Romano filled the freshmen in on what they need to know to succeed in the program, and Mary Beth Reilly, Vice President for Student Enrollment; Dr. Alfred Levine, Acting Dean of Science and Technology; Dr. Susan Holak, Associate Provost for Institutional Effectiveness; Mike Daniels, Associate Dean for Student Affairs; and Donna Fauci of the CSI Office of Recruitment and Admissions also introduced themselves.

Regarding the incoming class, Dr. Popper stated, “We’re happy to have so many good students joining the program. These students have a range of interests and experience that we really appreciate…it’s great to think about the talents that they’re going to bring and what they’re going to develop here.”

Students in the Macaulay Honors College receive full tuition scholarship at CSI and have access to a $7,500 Opportunities Fund that provides money for study abroad and funds unpaid internships or independent research projects. The students also receive a free laptop computer, have exclusive access to the Honors College Lounge and Computer Room, and receive personalized advising throughout their four-year tenure at Macaulay.