The College of Staten Island was chosen this winter to be a major recipient of funding from New York City’s $20 million CUNY 2x Tech Initiative, which seeks to double the number of career-qualified tech graduates by 2022. Designed and delivered in partnership with industry and academia, the initiative focuses on building the capacity of computer science departments to offer rapidly evolving industry-aligned skills, awareness, and experience to enable students to connect to jobs in the NYC tech ecosystem following graduation. Funding will support new, industry experienced, full- and part-time faculty, advisors, and job coaches.
CSI’s successful application was a result of a collaboration among the Computer Science Department, Academic Affairs, and the Division of Economic Development, Continuing Studies, and Government Relations. Department Chair Shuqun Zhang welcomed the opportunities that CUNY 2x will bring to the students and the department. “We are excited by the opportunity for CUNY 2x to build upon the excellent reputation of CSI’s Computer Science Department, which is already recognized for excellence nationally pursuant to its accreditation by the Computing Accreditation Commission of the Accreditation Board for Engineering and Technology. I would like to commend the special efforts of Sarah Zelikovitz, Deborah Sturm, Ken Iwama, and Jasmine Cardona in supporting our successful application.”
Commenting on the initiative, Vice President for Economic Development, Continuing Studies, and Government Relations Ken Iwama also applauded the cooperative effort. “We are honored to have been able to collaborate with the Computer Science Department and Academic Affairs to successfully attain CUNY 2x funding. A core mission of the Division of Economic Development, Continuing Studies, and Government Relations is to connect academic departments to external opportunities to bring added resources and collaborations for our students. We are all ecstatic about this outcome.”
The English Language Institute (ELI) at the College of Staten Island (CSI)/The City University of New York (CUNY) started its Spring semester term on January 21, 2020. The international office of CSI, the Center for Global Engagement, welcomed students from all over the world with an orientation session and an English placement test. These students will learn English until mid-May and many of them will return to their home countries, apply to CSI, or apply for a better job.
The ELI director, Gonzalo Villena, held a welcome and orientation session where he explained all the academic features of the program and the benefits they could get while learning English at the largest CUNY campus. “Our students will have the best experience of their lives, learning English with a university environment and living in New York City”, ELI director highlighted.
This spring, ELI received students from 16 different countries, which makes classes more fun since students will force themselves to speak in English and learn from everybody’s culture. Students are from Brazil, Chile, China, Colombia, Germany, Guatemala, Israel, Japan, Jordan, Nicaragua, Pakistan, Peru, Russia, South Korea, Sri Lanka, and Ukraine. They will have an intensive English program with 18 hours of class per week, with different courses such as reading, writing, grammar, conversation, and a TOEFL test preparation. At the end of the semester, they will take the TOEFL ITP test, and if they pass, they are eligible to apply to any CUNY school degree program.
ELI congratulates all these students for coming from far away to have the best time in New York City and extends the best wishes during this semester at the College of Staten Island.
The College of Staten Island/CUNY (CSI) has created new opportunities for area students to ascend academically as it partners with Staten Island high schools through The City University of New York’s (CUNY) Math Start™ program. Math Start™ is a math proficiency and college readiness model that fosters students’ full math potential, study habits, and self-advocacy skills in order to be successful in college.
This unique collaboration was part of
Degrees initiative, which strives to address
the national crises of college access and completion. Created by the College of
Staten Island/CUNY, St. John’s University/Staten Island Campus, Wagner College,
and four local public high schools, 30,000 Degrees adopts an anchor mission to
increase the number of college graduates with a bachelor’s degree or higher
from Staten Island by 30,000 by the year 2025.
The first Math Start™ collaboration under
this framework was launched in 2017 between CSI and New Dorp High School (NDHS).
The implementation of the program at NDHS marks the first time this nationally
recognized model was used in a high school, versus a college setting.
Dr. Deirdre DeAngelis, Principal of New Dorp High School, sees this partnership as an opportunity to bridge a systemic divide between college and high school, so that students don’t fall into what she calls “The Moat.” “This proactive approach allows students to be better prepared and more qualified to take on the challenges of college-level work. Students who enter college in a remedial status are less likely to remain in an atmosphere where they are experiencing defeat from the beginning. In order to strengthen the transition, or walk over the draw bridge, we have utilized the strength of the CSI Math Start™ program, especially the curriculum, training and support staff, to provide our students a more successful experience and start to college life.”
Dr. DeAngelis is the longest-serving
female principal in the City of New York, winner of the Sloan Public Service
Award, and was honored by Education
Update at its 2019 ceremony at the Harvard Club in Manhattan, along with
CUNY’s new Chancellor, Dr. Felix Matos Rodriguez, and Interim Executive Vice
Chancellor and Provost Dr. Vita Rabinowitz.
Student participants in Math Start™ each
receive dedicated support through college matriculation, financial aid, and a first-year
course selection process, which includes an opportunity to enroll in CUNY’s Accelerated Study in Associate’s Program (ASAP). ASAP
provides financial incentives and dedicated support for full-time associate’s-degree
students. CSI’s ASAP offers a bachelor’s degree track: the only one of its kind
in CUNY. Rather than waiting for students to waste financial aid and invest
time in remedial courses at the point of college enrollment, this historic collaboration
starts with at-risk, college-bound high school seniors; saving students’ time,
money, and grief.
In the collaboration’s pilot year, one
hundred percent of students passed the seminar class, earning college-credit.
Eighty-nine percent (25 out of 28) of participants enrolled in college, both
within and outside of the CUNY system. Eighty-two percent (23 out of 28) of
participants addressed their college math remedial needs, before graduating
high school. Due to the success of this first-year pilot, an additional CUNY
Math Start™ cohort ran in New Dorp High School last academic year. In Year 2, 89
percent (24 out of 27) students passed the seminar class once more, earning a
college credit. Approximately 85 percent (23 out of 27) of participants had self-identified
as intending to enroll in CUNY and non-CUNY colleges in fall 2019. Another 70 percent
(19 out of 27) of participants addressed their college math remedial needs,
before graduating high school.
“CSI’s most successful community
partnerships involve organizations with great leaders who have vision in
addressing the most pressing issues faced by our borough. Principal Deirdre
DeAngelis, our 30,000 Degrees partner, is such a leader in helping us to create
this completely novel implementation of Math Start™, one of CUNY’s signature
programs. Together we will continue to develop innovative ways to ensure New
Dorp students succeed in college and beyond,” said Ken Iwama, Vice President of
Economic Development, Continuing Studies, and Government Relations at CSI.
Considering the impressive results of
the program, University officials made this model more accessible to the community,
specifically in St. George, at Curtis High School, and for adults with high school
equivalency diplomas, who intended to enroll in college in fall 2019. CSI recruited
candidates for an Adult Learner-Math Start™
cohort to experience the program at CSI’s St.
George Campus. The launch provided the same academic and advisement
support to returning adult learners who have not yet applied to CUNY, much like
the partnership model which ran at New Dorp High School. CSI has also made
significant improvements to the experiences that high school students can access
when visiting campus and CSI’s
Technology Incubator; particularly in the
All of these activities under 30,000 Degrees reflect CSI’ strategic priority as borough steward, and its anchor mission to “intentionally apply an institution’s long-term, place-based economic power and human capital in partnership with community to mutually benefit the long-term well-being of both” (The Democracy Collaborative). Articulated by institutional leadership, and in alignment with New York City’s College Access for All initiative, the vision of 30,000 Degrees is to direct the public purpose of each institution toward confronting social inequities that inhibit educational aspirations and economic prosperity on Staten Island.
If you are looking to earn an MSW in New York City, your
best bet is the College of Staten Island. Our MSW graduates have the lowest
debt and the highest earnings of any MSW graduates in the City – including the
graduates of programs that are very highly ranked nationally.
Dean Savage, a professor at Queens College, CUNY analyzed
data on the newly released program-specific data from the College Scorecard
at the U.S. Department of Education (DOE), examining data on 11 nationally
accredited Master of Social Work (MSW) programs in the New York City metropolitan
area, including two SUNY campuses, NYU, Long Island University, and Columbia
Savage found that of the 11 institutions in the NYC area
that have accredited MSW programs, College of Staten Island students graduate
with the lowest debt (in federal loans taken out during enrollment in the MSW
program) and the highest earnings (one year after graduation, based on pooled
earnings estimates for graduates of 2014-2015 and 2015-2016, from IRS Treasury
files [W2 and 1040 forms]). This is among graduates of both public and private
schools, including NYU and an Ivy League school (Columbia).
An analysis of Savage’s numbers finds that the highest average
debt was for graduates of Columbia ($76,985), and LIU and NYU, (both at $75,960),
compared to the average debt for CSI graduates at $29,305, the lowest of all 11
In the earnings column, the lowest earnings were for graduates
of Yeshiva ($44,300), SUNY/Stony Brook ($45,800), and Touro ($46,200), while
CSI graduates reported average earnings of $52,200, the highest of all 11,
higher than Columbia ($50,700) and NYU ($48,200).
The College of Staten Island MSW program admitted its first
class in 2014. It takes a minimum of three years after the first group of
students is admitted to achieve initial national accreditation by the Council
on Social Work Education (CSWE), and CSI’s program has been accredited since
The MSW program has a single specialization in disability
studies, which CSWE says is unique in the country. It focuses on people with
physical, sensory, developmental, intellectual, and psychiatric disabilities,
as well as those who have substance use disorders or impairments associated
with military service, aging, and chronic health problems. Faculty members are
nationally and internationally known and produce critical research in disability
studies and other areas including returning citizens, stress in police
officers, and the national social work curriculum.
The program is purposely small, allowing faculty and
students to form close academic bonds and work together on research with
national and global implications. Admission is competitive. Scholarships are
often available. Go to https://www.csi.cuny.edu/ and
search for MSW Admissions.
In their first year of participating
in the annual Government Finance Case Challenge from the Association of
Government Accountants (AGA), a team of students from the Lucille and Jay Chazanoff
School of Business at the College of Staten Island (CSI) recently took first
prize in the graduate level of this national competition.
“This is an astounding achievement on the part of our students and
their mentor, Professor Patricia Galletta. Reaching this level of success,
particularly as a first attempt, helps to highlight the strength of our
students, our faculty, our academic programs, and the Chazanoff School of
Business in general,” noted Susan Holak, PhD, Founding Dean of the School.
According to the AGA Website, the Government Finance Case Challenge began in 2015, although this was the first year that the Challenge was open to both graduate and undergraduate students.
Team members Mohamed Hussein,
Kristina Manganaro, and Richard Pallarino are all students in ACC 760 (Government
and Not-For-Profit Accounting) this semester. In all, the College fielded three
teams – one undergraduate and two at the graduate level. All teams received a substantial
packet of material and supporting data related to a city chosen by the AGA,
from which the students had to prepare a summary document that followed
Citizen-Centric Reporting (CCR) guidelines. The CCR aims to lay out in a clear,
simple document exactly how governmental agencies are utilizing public
resources. Pallarino spoke about the process of producing the CCR, saying that
the challenge “was a great way to analyze not only a balance sheet, but
performance data from a different perspective.”
Professor Galletta noted that the case challenge allowed students “to apply the basic knowledge they have received in their governmental accounting course to a real city.” The city chosen by the AGA to be the subject of this year’s Challenge was Oklahoma City, OK.
After being selected as finalists at the end of October, the team of Pallarino, Hussein, and Manganaro was faced with the last stage of the Challenge, requiring them to submit a 25-minute video presentation of their findings by mid-November. The video was staged as a public meeting in which the students played the role of city council members discussing the accomplishments and challenges that the city had faced over the previous year, and the anticipated plans for the future. The “council members” also took questions from a public audience.
Kristina Manganaro reflected
on the overall experience, remarking that the team worked collectively “to
create our idea of a City Council meeting, and used our accounting skills to be
able to share our knowledge and help our constituents understand some
As the Chazanoff School
of Business continues to develop its emphasis on experiential learning, more
instructors are utilizing national and international case competitions as ways
of creating intensive, immersive learning experiences that place classroom
knowledge in real-world scenarios.
With CCR guidelines being
used in the field to make decisions in the public sphere, this Challenge
competition placed CSI students in precisely the type of situation that they
could face after graduation. Mohamed Hussein summed up the underlying purpose
of the CCR concept, saying that the assignment “tested our moral reasoning and highlighted
the importance of accountability.”
All three team members remarked that they would consider careers in public service as a result of participating in the competition. As Hussein noted, “although it is a huge responsibility … I would have the opportunity to suggest and implement ideas that will benefit our society.”
CSI’s Office of Community Educational Engagement partnered with the School of Business and the Center for Global Engagement to send one of our students, James Devine, in the Melissa Riggio Higher Education Program (MRHEP), to study abroad in Italy during the summer of 2019. This unique and historic collaboration draws from our legacy of place, as an access institution, housed on the former grounds of the Willowbrook State School.
The MRHEP is a fully inclusive five-year college and alumni experience, and non-degree program for young adults with developmental and intellectual disabilities, offering intensive and comprehensive support for academic, civic, and professional growth. Under the umbrella of AHRC New York City, and housed in four CUNY campuses, MRHEP’s mission is to support these individuals to build full lives. Students in the program participate in college courses, and engage in community service and co-curricular activities, and gain practical work experience through internships.
This past June, James Devine; Esteban Gonzalez, a MRHEP support mentor and CSI student; and 13 business students spent nine days in Florence, Italy learning about international corporate business practices, experiencing European culture, and visiting historic attractions. This trip was the first its kind for The City University of New York. Former program Director Ife Okoh said that the long-term dream was for “our student and his companion (to) have returned from a trip that will last with them forever. This trip marks a space in the history of the program and is a true testimonial for our partnership with CSI.” The School of Business often organizes similar trips abroad, this one based with Florence’s Lorenzo de Medici Institute, so students can experience a broad range of courses and get the most out of this enriching occasion.
While in Florence, James and the other students visited various businesses in the city to see how they are managed and function in the international market. Tours of manufacturers such as Ruffino and Ferragamo allowed the students to understand the complex works of global businesses in regard to production, management, and cultural practices. Among visits to restaurants and art galleries, there was a culinary class and an exploration of the area featuring the infamous Leaning Tower of Pisa.
James found the trip to be very influential, saying “I enjoyed the lifestyle of Italy and its great scenery. My experience in Florence was an interesting one. It was the most amazing place in the country of Italy and the culture of Christianity was very interesting.”
We are hoping this successful trip
leads to more partnerships with this program in the future. To learn more about
AHRC, and the Melissa Riggio Higher Education program, please visit https://www.ahrcnyc.org/services/school/college/,
and follow @CSIEngagement on Twitter for more on this and other student
A near-capacity crowd gathered last Thursday in the Center for the Arts Williamson Theatre for Convocation 2019, an opportunity to learn about the state of the College over the past year, and to celebrate faculty and staff members who are celebrating service anniversaries in five-year increments. [View gallery]
President William J. Fritz took to the stage after an introduction by Vice
President for Student Affairs and Alumni Engagement Jennifer Borrero.
beginning of his remarks, Dr. Fritz stated, “One of the reasons why I enjoy
being President at the College of Staten Island is because we give people from
all walks of life an opportunity to fulfill their dreams. Whether you are
searching for a certificate, associate’s, baccalaureate, master’s, or doctoral
degree, you can do it here. For the people we honor here today, ones who have
demonstrated their commitment to the College through their years of service, I
believe you also have a love for helping others achieve their dreams.”
also waxed nostalgic, briefly touching on the themes of past Convocations, such
as polar explorers who demonstrated how to embark on a new voyage, the
teamsmanship of his favorite band, the Grateful Dead; the College’s legacy
trilogy (institution, place, and mission), and the institution’s current
Strategic Plan, Opportunity to Ascend.
He then added, “Today, I want us to celebrate ourselves. Through modest
resources we have done the impossible, we have functioned as a team, we have
reached the poles, we have put on the equivalent of an amazing concert, we have
honored our mission. We have earned the right to dream.”
As a part of
this celebration, Dr. Fritz reviewed some of the highlights of the past year,
including the $7.5M gift from Staten Island Community College alumni Lucille
’65 and Jay Chazanoff ’65 to name the School of Business; CSI’s selection for
participation in CUNY 2x Tech, an initiative to provide valuable resources and
support to meet the ambitious goal of doubling the number of graduates with
tech degrees; the recently announced plans to develop the CSI Genomic Research
Facility, which will allow faculty and students to conduct critical research on
genetic variations in DNA that may cause the development or progression of
diseases or conditions such as cancer, drug addiction, and autism; the NCAA’s
decision to accept CSI Athletics into its Division II; and Governor Andrew
Cuomo’s approval of a new Doctorate of Education in Community-based Leadership.
concluded his presentation with two videos that underscored the excellence of
CSI students: a promotional piece for the College entitled “CSI: We Bring the
World to You” from Media Culture students Cadem Francis, Rheana Galloway,
Larentiy Sorokin, and Annie Tenantitla, under the guidance of Professor David
Gerstner, Mitchell Lovell, and Lava Sorokin; and portions of the moving speech
that Student Government President Fatu Amara delivered at the 2019 Celestial
with tradition, the President’s speech was followed by another energetic and
entertaining presentation by Assistant Vice President and Chief Information
Officer for Information Technology Services Patricia Kahn in celebration of CSI
faculty and staff members who were celebrating anniversaries of service in
concluded with a Holiday Reception in the Center for the Arts Atrium.
Supporters of the College of Staten Island gathered at the Richmond County Country Club, last Saturday, for the College of Staten Island Foundation’s Tenth Annual Celestial Ball “Sowing the Seeds for Student Success.” View photo gallery.
The event provided attendees with an opportunity to
socialize and enjoy a wonderful meal and dancing, participate in an exciting
silent auction; purchase a chance to win a trip to Disney World, courtesy of
Casale Jewelers; and take part in the annual $1,000 Pot of Gold drawing.
The Celestial Ball also raises much-needed funds for the
College’s greatest needs, and honors individuals and organizations that
continue to make a positive impact on CSI and our borough.
After introductory remarks by Executive Director of
Institutional Advancement and External Affairs Cheryl Adolph and CSI Foundation
Board President Patrick McDermott, CSI President William J. Fritz discussed
some of the high points for the College over the past year, including the $7.5M gift from Lucille ’65
and Jay ’65 Chazanoff to name the School of Business; CSI’s participation in
CUNY 2X Tech with the goal of doubling the number of graduates with tech
degrees; the recent announcement of the intention for CSI to develop the CSI
Genomic Research Facility; and CSI Athletics’ acceptance into NCAA Division II.
Dr. Fritz also introduced a promotional video for the
College, which was produced by Cinema Studies students in the Department of
Media Culture. Entitled “CSI: We Bring the World to You” the team of Cadem
Francis, Rheana Galloway, Larentiy Sorokin, and Annie Tenantitla worked over
the Spring and Summer 2019 semesters with Professor David Gerstner, Mitchell
Lovell, and Lava Sorokin.
Student Speaker Fatu Amara followed Dr. Fritz. Amara is a
senior in the Verrazano
School honors program; a Jeannette K. Watson Fellow; a Collegiate, Science, and
Technology Entry Program student; and President of the Student Government. In
2015, she immigrated to Staten Island from Sierra Leone, and she is a graduate
of Curtis High School. During her time as a Watson Fellow, she had the
opportunity to intern at the NYC Mayor’s Office for Immigrant Affairs by
facilitating language learning programs, and in Rwanda, where she worked on
development projects by conducting outreach to rural communities.
In her remarks, Amara comments on her time as a Watson
Fellow. “As I embarked on my final year as an undergraduate student, these diverse
experiences have shaped my global perspective, challenged me professionally to
put forth my best work, and supported my personal growth from that shy girl
that entered the campus to a strong and thoughtful leader.”
The next part of the program spotlighted this year’s
recipients of the President’s Medal. Provost and Senior Vice President for
Academic Affairs J. Michael Parrish joined Dr. Fritz on stage to honor 1199SEIU
Training and Employment Funds (represented by Denise Cherenfant, Director, TEF
Nursing Programs); June M. Como, EdD, RN and Anthony Como; and National Grid
(represented by Frank Lombardo, NY Business Planning and Performance, and Carol
Community and Customer Management).
Following Dr. Fritz’s concluding comments and dinner, guests
at the Ball danced to the music of Crossing Midnight.
This year’s Ball Committee Chair was Marilyn Caselli, Senior
Vice President for Customer Operations, Consolidated Edison, Inc., and a member
of the CSI Foundation Board of Directors.