The College of Staten Island’s School of Education recently held the Inaugural Hooding Ceremony for its EdD in Community-Based Leadership at CSI St. George, officially conferring Doctorate degrees to four graduates, the first EdD graduates in the history of the College.

The graduates honored were Dr. Lorianne Crowder, who received her degree in January, and Dr. Kristine Mustillo, Dr. Erica Riba, and Dr. Jazmin Rivera, who were all conferred in June.

The program, officially introduced in 2020, consists of 48 credits plus a completed dissertation and meets four weekends per semester from Friday evening to Sunday afternoon. Dr. Ruth Powers Silverberg, Associate Professor and Program Co-Director, worked alongside fellow faculty members Bethany Rogers and Marquitta Speller and a local community school principal to develop the EdD Program, which is the first of its kind, in 2016-2017. The EdD in Community-Based Leadership provides leadership and research knowledge and skills for youth-serving professionals committed to transforming their communities.

Professor Powers Silverberg commented “I am so incredibly proud of this group and this program which has evolved due to the collaboration among an amazing full- and part-time faculty and the students who provided their feedback along the way. This first set of graduates started in 2020 just after the beginning of what was supposed to be a three-month lockdown. They persevered through their own and families’ illnesses, and full-time jobs, many of which consisted of supporting their communities through the pandemic, all while completing rigorous doctoral study. They took a risk as the first to enter and in such challenging circumstances.

 This program, with its distinctive goals and impressive student body, places CSI as a leader in this approach across Staten Island and beyond and we will continue to start a new cohort each year. (CSI recently entered its fifth cohort.) Our students’ scholarship and research will unquestionably make an important contribution to the growing body of research as it aids in understanding communities through their eyes.”

The School of Education will hold official hooding ceremonies each year. Congratulations to our first-ever EdD graduates!

For a full photo gallery of the evening, see below (Credit: Andrey Parkhomenko):