Admitted Student Conference – UPDATE

In accordance with CUNY’s directive to limit non-essential public gatherings and NYS guidelines, the March Admitted Student Conferences has been cancelled.

The Office of Recruitment and Admissions is developing various options for our prospective students who wish to learn more about our College. This includes online options and virtual events that provide much of the content we were eager to share at the Conference. This will include:

  • Increased promotion of our existing virtual tour so that students can see our campus, featured facilities, and Dolphin Cove.
  • A new admitted student Webpage, featuring special video presentations, Webinars, resources, and much more for our newly admitted class.
  • Our new closed Facebook group for Fall 2020 admitted students so that they can interact with each other and have questions answered by New Student Mentors (peers).​

In dealing with this challenge, there is opportunity to provide more information to our prospects using the virtual platforms. Perhaps your department was unable to attend the Admitted Student Conference or conduct a session. Now, you have the opportunity to create a video or host a Webinar at your convenience.  I encourage you to contact to me if you are interested in exploring these options.

By Emmanuel Esperance, Jr.

CSI Is Closed Sunday and Monday

Since I wrote to you this afternoon and over the last several hours, we have been notified that five members of the campus community are eithe awaiting results of the Coronavirus test or have been in close contact with someone who has tested positive to the virus. We appreciate that these people have updated us so that we can take appropriate precautions.

Only one of the five, a student who was last at the school on Wednesday, Mar. 11, is symptomatic. The others have been exposed to people who are feeling ill but they themselves don’t have any symptoms.

State health officials believe that since the student was asymptomatic when she was on campus and none of the others have any symptoms, the risk to our community is low, but I believe it prudent to exercise caution while we consult further with health experts and perform a deep cleaning of the campus in accordance with City and State guidelines.

The student was only at Willowbrook; however, both the Willowbrook campus and St. George will be closed Sunday, Mar. 15 and Monday, Mar. 16. Dolphin Cove will remain open. During this time, only essential personnel are reporting to campus.

As always, if you feel sick, please contact a healthcare provider. If you don’t have a healthcare provider, please call 311. Hospital staff cannot ask you about your immigration status or deny you care based on your ability to pay.  

Your health and safety are my number one priority. We will keep you informed of developments. Please continue to check our Webpage for the latest updates.

By William J. Fritz

Training and Support for Distance Learning

I wanted to take this opportunity to share additional information regarding training and support services that are available to you in preparation for distance learning. While we have a plethora of resources available on our Website, we wanted to focus specifically on services you will need in order to migrate your course content. I would like to also stress that these services are being provided as a short-term solution and do not replace the importance of instructional design when developing your online course. Please take a moment when things settle down to visit our Distance Learning Website if you wish to explore teaching online in the future.

Blackboard Quick Guides

·       Blackboard (Bb) Faculty Quick Start Guide

This quick guide contains Blackboard tutorials and videos for basic Blackboard functionality (e.g., logging into Blackboard, uploading content, and posting assignments)
Please note: As of Friday, Mar. 13, all of the Blackboard courses have been set to “available.”

·       Blackboard (Bb) Collaborate Ultra (also included in Quick Start Guide)
Blackboard Collaborate Ultra can be used in creative ways to support your teaching and learning. The platform allows you to offer both synchronous and asynchronous collaborative sessions for your students. Recording capabilities allow you to conduct live lessons, which can be posted and shared with your students. Features such as a whiteboard, sharing your desktop, sharing files, simple polling and breakout sessions allow you to actively engage students.

·       Blackboard (Bb) Student Quick Start Guide

Cloud Applications

·       Store and access files from different devices, share files, and collaborate on content.

o   Dropbox

o   OneDrive

·       Office 365: Access office applications remotely

·       Cloud Virtual Desktop: Remotely access your course software

Training Opportunities

·       Training sessions are available for Blackboard, Bb Collaborate, and other technology tools, which you can use for hosting and sharing content (e.g., Cloud repositories such as Dropbox and OneDrive and Cloud applications such as Microsoft Forms).

·       Evening and weekend training has been added to the training schedule to accommodate adjuncts.


·       Information Technology Services, the Faculty Center, and the Department of Modern Languages and Literatures are working together to provide the necessary support during this stressful time.

·       ITS has cross-trained student staff and has established a phone triage in order to provide additional support.

·       The Faculty Center and Modern Languages have a team of technologists who will continue to support your Bb needs.

·       Departments throughout the campus are leveraging a train-the-trainer model to provide further assistance when necessary.

·       Library public labs, Rotunda, and the Campus Center will remain open for students to use.

·       Student support is available in the evenings in the Open Computer Laboratory (1L-212)

Contact Information:

·       Information Technology (; )

Call Center: 718.982.HELP

o   Press 1 for Technical Support (e.g., computer problems and account information)

o   Press 2 for Technology Training (e.g., Blackboard and other software applications)

·       Faculty Center ( ; 718.982.3909) 

·       Modern Languages ( ; 718.982.4155)

Thank you again for your continued support.

By Patricia Kahn, PhD

COVID-19 Update

Although there have been no reported cases of the COVID-19 virus at the College of Staten Island, a cross-divisional team has been convened to monitor the progression of the virus and to formulating strategies for maximizing campus health and safety and to ensure student success and maintain operations as the campus is impacted. The first discussion was held on Friday, February 28 with representatives from Academic Affairs, the Health Center, the Center for Global Engagement, Facilities, Public Safety, Student Affairs, IT, Human Resources, the Office of Diversity and Compliance, Campus Housing, Auxiliary Services, Communications and Marketing, and Community and Governmental Relations. This group will continue to monitor the progression of the virus and will continue to convene and issue additional guidance as events unfold.

The City University of New York has released a Coronavirus Guidance Update, which we encourage you to read. It covers topics such as study abroad, returning from travel to China, personal preventative measures, and what to do if you display symptoms. It also provides a number of informative Websites, such as the NY State Department of Health and the Centers for Disease Control, to learn more about the virus and receive authoritative updates, in an effort to prevent transmission and allay fears.

The offices and services below are available to assist you with questions or concerns:

For general information about COVID-19, any member of the campus community may contact:

-Health and Wellness Services, 1C-112, 718.982.3045

Faculty and staff who are experiencing anxiety related to COVID-19 may contact:

-Human Resources, 1A-201, 718.982.2676 or

-Deer Oaks Employee Assistance Program (EAP), 855.492.3633

Students experiencing anxiety related to COVID-19 may contact:

-Counseling Center 1A 109, 718.982.2391

If any member of the campus community has questions regarding study abroad or international travel, please contact:

-Center for Global Engagement (Study Abroad programs), 2A-206, 718.982.2100

If any member of the campus community has a concern about CSI’s emergency preparedness relating to COVID-19, please contact:

Public Safety, 2A-108, 718.982.2113

By J. Michael Parrish

Technology Training Program -March Is Office 365 Month

The OTS Training Team is excited to continue our Lunch & Learn training program. 

At noon* on Mondays, Wednesdays, and Fridays the team will meet you online to demonstrate a 15-minute technology topic. The team will stay online for another 15 minutes to answer any questions you have on that day’s topic.

Join as many of the sessions as you like. There is no need to register in advance. You can access the session in the online calendar.

March is Office 365 Month. 

Topics will include:

  • MS Office 365 Overview
  • MS Word 365 Overview
  • MS PowerPoint 365 Overview
  • MS Excel Overview
  • OneNote
  • Teams
  • Forms
  • Sway
  • OneDrive

We look forward to meeting you in one of the sessions.

*You can join the session 15 minutes prior, to conduct a link and audio check. The sessions require speakers. Please call 718.982.2345 if you have any questions.

By Doriann Pieve-Hyland

Commencement Awards

As the Spring semester is in full bloom, it’s time to start thinking about Commencement and all the exciting activities that showcase our students. Honor’s Convocation is a great way to recognize the many accomplishments of our students. By donating to a Commencement award, you will show our students that CSI faculty and staff are invested in our students and proud of their many achievements.

Please consider showing your support to our students by donating to the CSI Foundation either by check or by credit card or online by clicking, Please give now!  Please remember to note on either the memo line of your check or the comments box in the link which Commencement award your gift will support.

For more information, please contact either the Provost’s Office or the CSI Foundation.

Division of Academic Affairs