I hope that this mid-month email finds you well as I write with updates and information concerning
recent activities.

As the semester winds down and we look forward to Commencement activities, the campus has been
active with any number of student activities and presentations. This week saw the annual Engineering
and Environmental Science Career and Capstone Showcase, the School of Education’s “Day at the
Circus” exhibit in 1L (and subsequent School of Ed events running through next week), poetry
readings, an event to celebrate AAPI Month, and a jollof rice cook-off (thanks to the African
International Student Club). The week ends with a performance Metamorphosis by our Department
of Performing and Creative Arts Drama Program, a student collaboration under the direction of
Professor Maurya Wickstrom, which I previewed at last week’s Undergraduate Research Conference
(and the set design, thanks to Professor Matt Fick, is phenomenal!). Next week brings more such
activities with an exhibit of student art (Threaded Connections: Unravelling the Internal) in our gallery,
a CSI Chorus Recital (Tuesday, May 14 at 3:00pm), and a CSI Student Film Festival (in our newly
renovated Screening Room, on that same day). I plan to attend as many of these events as my
schedule allows, and I hope you will do the same to support our students and their faculty mentors!

This week, I also had the opportunity to celebrate our phenomenal student-athletes at their year-end
awards celebration. It was wonderful to meet so many of these hardworking ambassadors and their
coaches, and to speak to them about the lessons they have learned on the fields, in the gym, and in
the classroom. Indeed, the lessons that make for a successful athlete—teamwork, dedication,
communication, and accountability, among others—are the same traits that make for a successful
student, a lesson that is not lost on any who see the cumulative GPA for our student-athletes. Outside
the classroom and the playing fields, our student-athletes are reliable and dependable spokespersons
for CSI: time and again, the Dolphins turn out to represent our campus at public events, and they are
great advocates for themselves and our school. Thank you to the entire Athletics Program for the
invitation to join your celebration, and for the work that you do each and every day.

I also had conversations this week with the College Council Executive Committee (where we set the
agenda for next week’s meeting), and where we discussed Commencement plans (and be sure to
check out our “pop-up shop” by DolphinCard Services in 3A to purchase your CSI swag), the state of
our budget, enrollment initiatives, and other matters. The following day, I attended the monthly
Council of President’s meeting, where we had a lengthy debrief concerning campus protests, learned
about system initiatives related to important compliance actions (and please remember to complete
the required ESPARC, Workplace Violence Prevention, Cybersecurity Awareness, and Gender-Based
Violence compliance trainings available on Blackboard by the deadline of May 31), and about ongoing
lobbying efforts. We also heard about challenges related to financial aid filings, and the system’s
response to this burden: locally we have a dynamic communications campaign around this issue, a
series of planned FAFSA-fest activities, and a new financial aid laboratory on the fourth floor of
Building 2A.

On Thursday, I attended an off-campus event honoring “Women of Achievement” in the local
community, an event that was originally pioneered by the Staten Island Advance, which is now run by
Staten Island Women, Inc. It was my pleasure to represent CSI and CUNY at the event, where one of
those feted was Dr. Jill O’Donnell-Tormey, a member of the CUNY Board of Trustees and a staunch
advocate for all that we are doing on our campus and across the Island. Others recognized and in
attendance included our own Verrazzano Honors Student Malak Alkiswani, who was one of two
scholarship recipients selected by a committee for her volunteerism, community service, and
leadership potential. Malak is a Biology major (and English minor) who is working on independent
study projects related to optometry and has volunteered as a tutor and at local food pantries,
demonstrating her status in the classroom and beyond. We thank Staten Island Women, Inc. for their
support and for recognizing Malak’s achievements. The event once again demonstrated that we play
an outsized role in the local community, a role that allows for incredible outreach and impact, which
we have been parlaying into increased philanthropic and other support. On that end, my week ended
with a follow-up conversation with the Heckscher Foundation for Children, a charitable organization
that is interested in supporting various student success initiatives on which we are working here at
CSI. I am very optimistic that these funding partners recognize the value of the work we are doing and
will support us in our efforts to scale these activities to serve even more of our population in coming
months and years. I thank you all for making the work we do both impactful and rewarding.

Until next time, and wishing all who celebrate, a Happy Mother’s Day,
Timothy G. Lynch, Ph.D. (he/him/his)