CSI Athletics Hall of Fame a Smashing Success with Six New Inductees

(l-r): David Pizzuto, Jason Anarumo, Christina D'Arpa, James Donlan, Tara Gagliardo, David Paul, Ken Lam, Charles Gomes

The College of Staten Island honored six individuals this evening as part of the Class of 2016 Hall of Fame Induction Ceremony held at The Vanderbilt at South Beach on Staten Island.  Recipients Jason Anarumo, Christina D’Arpa, James Donlan, Tara Gagliardo-DeGrado, Ken Lam, and David Paul were the honorees, representing a total of nearly 60 years of service as coaches and student-athletes.  The rousing event featured a cluster of guest speakers over a full dinner, with words from each of the honorees or their families.

With many of the guests having not seen one-another in many years, the beginning of the Hall of Fame dinner was a chance for many to catch-up, share anecdotes, and reflect on the meritorious years of service of the inducted.  The evening commenced with words from Associate Athletic Director David Pizzuto, who served as Hall of Fame Committee Chairperson and host, followed by Director of Athletics Charles Gomes and Deputy to the President Kenichi Iwama.  Dr. William Fritz, CSI President addressed the crowd and offered congratulations to end the evening.  Gomes spoke about the importance of connecting with alumni, congratulating the pioneers of the program who help usher in the Class of 2016.  Iwama touched on the direction of the College, and the importance of continuing a legacy that have been storied both at Staten Island Community College and CSI.  Shortly thereafter, the hardware was issued to the seven guests of honor.

First to the stage was Anarumo, who was presented by his father and former CSI Baseball Assistant Coach Anthony Anarumo.  The power-hitting infielder set multiple records for CSI and remains the school’s all-time home runs leader and ranks in the top five of 16 other major offensive categories.  It culminated with a CUNYAC Championship in 1997, the first in a long line since, as Anarumo has set the pace for many future classes.

Next to be inaugurated was men’s hoop star Ken Lam, who starred on the team from 1968-70 when CSI was Staten Island Community College.  The eye-popping numbers saw Lam average over 20 points and rebounds per game over his 43-game career, obliterating school records in both categories at the time.  He would go on to star at NCAA Division I NYU and St. Francis post-graduation from SICC.

Next up was CSI softball star Christina D’Arpa, whose numbers at the plate and in the circle alone would have earned her into hallowed company.  Together, the superstar was the only three-time CUNYAC Most Valuable Player, adding three championships and the school’s all-time home runs, slugging percentage and earned run average records.

After a break in the program, men’s soccer skipper James Donlan was next to be honored.  Donlan guided the soccer unit on four different occasions during his career beginning in 1964, each time taking the floundering program and resurrecting it to championship form.  Along the way were two regional NJCAA Championships and one of the school’s last CUNYAC Championship teams in 1996.  To date, he is the only coach who is the all-time wins leader in their respective sport at both SICC and CSI.

Next up to the podium was men’s basketball dynamo David Paul, who bookended his career with a pair of CUNYAC Championship and was a back-to-back CUNYAC and Metro Basketball Writers Player of the Year his junior and senior seasons.  He finished his career as the school’s all-time points leader, since broken, and is now a professional basketballer with the Harlem Wizards.

Capping the evening was women’s hoops standout Tara Gagliardo-DeGrado, who for four seasons quarterbacked the Dolphins to a pair of CUNYAC Championships.  A tremendous two way player from 1996-00, Gagliardo-DeGrado finished her career as the school’s all-time leader in assists and steals, still standing, and the all-time leader in scoring, since broken.

The Hall of Fame proved to be a magical evening for many of the guests, and for the honorees, the focus seemed to be less about the induction and more about the College’s historical significance.

QUOTES

Alongside the inductees receiving hardware, the same plaques, complete with telling bios will hang in the CSI Sports & Recreation Center as part of Hall of Fame walk, located on the upper concourse of the basketball arena.

Future Hall of Classes will be announced every other year, with the next class slated for 2018.

Hall of Fame Class of 2016 – Get Your Tickets Now!

Earlier this summer the College of Staten Island announced its Class of 2016 for induction into the Athletics Hall of Fame and now is the time to secure your tickets to the big event. The induction ceremony will take place on Thursday, October 27, from 6-10pm at The Vanderbilt at South Beach in Staten Island.

The evening will feature a full-course dinner along with an open bar while celebrating the achievements of Jason Anarumo, Christina D’Arpa, James Donlan, Tara Gagliardo, Ken Lam, and David Paul.  Tickets are $100 for adults and $60 for kids 12 and under.  Sponsorship opportunities with journal advertisements are also available.  To secure tickets, interested members can acces the online ticket portal at www.csidolphins.com/hof or can request to have an invitation sent to their home by emailing david.pizzuto@csi.cuny.edu.

Basketball hardwood stars dominate the field this time around, with two on the list having played during the same era at CSI, one that saw the Dolphins basketball teams win a total of four CUNYAC Championships.

Natural point guard Tara Gagliardo was the centerpiece to the Dolphins women’s hoops program from 1996-00, starring under then coaches Eugene Marshall, Jr. and Marguerite Moran.  She remains the school’s all-time leader in assists (537) and steals (333) and left the program as the school’s all-time leading scorer with 1,310 points, since broken.  Gagliardo stands 10th all-time in rebounds at the College and 5th all-time in career three-pointers, winning championships in 1997 and in 2000, her freshman and senior seasons.  She was the CUNYAC Tournament MVP in 2000, averaging a team-best 13.4 points per game while setting the school record with 178 assists, good for 6.4 per contest.

On the men’s side, David Paul was just as disruptive on the interior for Head Coach Tony Petosa’s sides from 1998-02.  Like Gagliardo, Paul collected CUNYAC titles his freshman and senior seniors, ending his career with a banner year, averaging 19.2 points en route to a Most Valuable Player honor from the conference, an achievement he also won following the 2000-01 season.  By the time his career was complete, Paul was the school’s all-time leading scorer with 1,684 points, since broken, but the dominating forward still stands 5th all-time at the College in that department while placing third all-time in blocks and 15th all-time in rebounds.

The success of the CSI men’s basketball squads were ushered in by dominating teams from Staten Island Community College, coached by current Hall of Famers Ira Sweet and Evan Pickman.  A major force behind two of those seasons was the stellar play of Ken Lam from 1968-70.  Lam’s unprecedented run featured an astounding 1,124 career points alongside 861 rebounds, good for 26.1 points and an even 20.0 rebounds per contest, numbers that never again were duplicated at the College.  He left SICC as the school’s all-time leading scorer and was a Junior College All-American in 1969 and 1970.  Lam would leave the Dolphins’ two-year program to star for both NYU and St. Francis College.

Doing the same on the baseball diamond was power-hitting star Jason Anarumo, who anchored the Dolphins through four seasons that culminated with a CUNYAC Championship in 1997 alongside 26 wins, good for second all-time to that point.  Anarumo batted a stellar .419 over 177 career games, belting out a record 28 homeruns over the stretch.  He finished his career in the top five in eight offensive career categories including RBI, runs scored, doubles and triples.  His 14 homeruns and 57 RBI in 1997 remain CSI single season records, a year that culminated with CUNYAC Tournament MVP honors.

Just as potent at the dish and doubling in the circle was softball standout Christina D’Arpa.  The hard-throwing righty sported a career 36-18 record in the circle with a microscopic 1.85 career ERA, still standing as a school record.  She also stands third all-time at the College in wins and strikeouts while sporting a career batting average of a hefty .450 with a school best 19 triples to go with 168 hits and 116 RBI, both third all-time.  D’Arpa collected three CUNYAC Championships, winning CUNYAC Player of the Year in 2004, 2005, and 2007, taking Tournament MVP in 2005 and 2007.  Her 1.52 ERA and eight homeruns in 2007 remain school records within a single season.

Rounding out the distinguished list of honorees is long-tenured soccer skipper James Donlan who pioneered the Dolphins program on the pitch for three separate tours spanning almost four decades.  His first tour of service was from 1964-74 at SICC, a stint that included a four-year stretch that included two NJCAA Regional Championships and a 54-6-4 record.  He also coached the men’s golf team within that time at SICC.  The College suspended the soccer program for two seasons as SICC merged with Richmond College to create the four-year varsity program, and when play resumed Donlan led the program for its opening two years in 1977-78, leading the team from five games under to three games over .500 in just two seasons.  After departing from the program, Donlan returned from 1982-85 and from 1994-96, both times taking over the program following disastrous seasons and resurrecting the team to prosperity.  He ended his career with a CUNYAC Championship and CUNYAC Coach of the Year honors in 1996, and remains the SICC and CSI all-time wins leader in men’s soccer.  Donlan also served as an assistant coach to women’s basketball before his eventual retirement in the late 90’s.

Don’t wait – get your tickets today at www.csidolphins.com/hof.

 

CSI Honors Student Achievements Adding Up

Tim Sweeney '17

The following equation sums up Tim Sweeney’s experience at the College of Staten Island (CSI): Macaulay Honors College Student + Captain of the CSI Men’s Swimming and Diving Team + Mathematics Major = One Amazing Student. Leading his team to three CUNYAC Championships in a row, Sweeney ’17, who is also member of the Student Athletics Advisory Committee (SAAC), advises his peers not to let school work add up.

“Stay on top of your work. College is a great opportunity to have fun but the amount of work can pile up quickly. Complete your work piece by piece, without letting it get out of hand,” urges Sweeney, a 20-year-old graduate of St. Peter’s High School.

Sweeney and his team recently traveled to Stuart, FL for a week-long training trip of two-a-day swim practices and dry-land workouts, where the athletes could focus on training without any distractions. Sweeney hopes to represent CSI at the 2017 NCAA Division III Swimming Championships this March.

“We are extremely proud of Tim. He is an excellent leader to his teammates and a very hard worker. It’s been a pleasure to see him grow as a student and excel as an athlete,” lauded Charles Gomes, CSI Director of Athletics.

“Swimming has been such a big part of my life for about 15 years. Because of this, I’m around the pool so much. I give swim lessons at CSI and I’m one of the head coaches of Hillside Swim Club, a team that I swam on for 13 years, until I graduated high school,” noted Sweeney, a West Brighton resident who also carries minors in Geography and Finance.

In a brief hiatus from aquatics and academics here at CSI, Sweeney also had the opportunity to travel to Copenhagen, Denmark where he studied Danish Greenspace, a class that allowed him to “see and experience so many new things from a culture that is so different than ours here.”

With an impressive 3.865 GPA, Sweeney is also a research assistant under Professor Jonathan Peters of the Finance Department at CSI and recently presented at the 2016 CSI Undergraduate Research Conference. His project, titled “Geospatial Analysis of New For-Hire Vehicle Services in New York City,” was an analysis of four different taxicab services throughout the five boroughs.  Sweeney also participated in the Macaulay Big Data Boot Camp, part of the Data Science Program at Macaulay Honors College and is taking part in a data analytics project this summer at the CUNY HPCC.​

Sweeney is grateful to many CSI faculty and staff members, particularly his swim coach, Mike Ackalitis, who has been “a key factor in my swimming successes and is always available to help outside of the pool as well, whether it is with school or work.”

Sweeney also appreciates his Macaulay advisors, Anita Romano and Lisa French, who “have offered guidance in all of my academic endeavors dealing with classes and outside internships,” as well as his mentors Professor Peters and Nora Santiago.

“Tim’s devotion to his studies as well as his training is admirable. He is a terrific student, and the Macaulay Honors College is proud to have him in the program,” said Dr. Charles Liu, Director of the Macaulay Honors College and The Verrazano School at CSI.

After graduation, Sweeney plans to attend graduate school for actuarial science, which would incorporate his math and my finance backgrounds and “allow me to enjoy the best of what each has to offer.”

 

 

 

 

CSI Athletics Names Hall of Fame Class of 2016

The College of Staten Island is unveiling its Athletics Hall of Fame Class of 2016, with plans to celebrate the memories and accolades of six deserving members with its inauguration ceremony this coming fall.  The year’s chosen field will be honored on Thursday, October 27, 2016, at The Vanderbilt at South Beach.  The eclectic mix of candidates will join the 14 members chosen in the College’s first two classes in 2012 and 2014, which honors deserving individuals from both the College of Staten Island and Staten Island Community College.

The distinguished honorees of the CSI Athletics Hall of Fame Class of 2016 are:

– Jason Anarumo – Men’s Baseball Player (1994-97)
– Christina D’Arpa – Women’s Softball Player (2004-07)
– James Donlan – Men’s Soccer Coach (1964-95)
– Tara Gagliardo – Women’s Basketball Player (1996-00)
– Ken Lam – Men’s Basketball Player (1968-70)
– David Paul – Men’s Basketball Player (1998-02)

“I’d like to thank the members of the Hall of Fame selection committee for assembling an outstanding class of honorees,” said CSI Athletics Director Charles Gomes. “With so many worthy candidates to choose from, it’s never an easy task to narrow down the field, and I think the committee assembled a well-rounded group that showcases the history of athletic achievements at the College of Staten Island.”

Basketball hardwood stars dominate the field this time around, with two on the list having played during the same era at CSI, one that saw the Dolphins basketball teams win a total of four CUNYAC Championships.

Natural point guard Tara Gagliardo was the centerpiece to the Dolphins women’s hoops program from 1996-00, starring under then coaches Eugene Marshall, Jr. and Marguerite Moran.  She remains the school’s all-time leader in assists (537) and steals (333) and left the program as the school’s all-time leading scorer with 1,310 points, since broken.  Gagliardo stands 10th all-time in rebounds at the College and 5th all-time in career three-pointers, winning championships in 1997 and in 2000, her freshman and senior seasons.  She was the CUNYAC Tournament MVP in 2000, averaging a team-best 13.4 points per game while setting the school record with 178 assists, good for 6.4 per contest.

On the men’s side, David Paul was just as disruptive on the interior for Head Coach Tony Petosa’s sides from 1998-02.  Like Gagliardo, Paul collected CUNYAC titles his freshman and senior seniors, ending his career with a banner year, averaging 19.2 points en route to a Most Valuable Player honor from the conference, an achievement he also won following the 2000-01 season.  By the time his career was complete, Paul was the school’s all-time leading scorer with 1,684 points, since broken, but the dominating forward still stands 5th all-time at the College in that department while placing third all-time in blocks and 15th all-time in rebounds.

The success of the CSI men’s basketball squads were ushered in by dominating teams from Staten Island Community College, coached by current Hall of Famers Ira Sweet and Evan Pickman.  A major force behind two of those seasons was the stellar play of Ken Lam from 1968-70.  Lam’s unprecedented run featured an astounding 1,124 career points alongside 861 rebounds, good for 26.1 points and an even 20.0 rebounds per contest, numbers that never again were duplicated at the College.  He left SICC as the school’s all-time leading scorer and was a Junior College All-American in 1969 and 1970.  Lam would leave the Dolphins’ two-year program to star for both NYU and St. Francis College.

Doing the same on the baseball diamond was power-hitting star Jason Anarumo, who anchored the Dolphins through four seasons that culminated with a CUNYAC Championship in 1997 alongside 26 wins, good for second all-time to that point.  Anarumo batted a stellar .419 over 177 career games, belting out a record 28 homeruns over the stretch.  He finished his career in the top five in eight offensive career categories including RBI, runs scored, doubles and triples.  His 14 homeruns and 57 RBI in 1997 remain CSI single season records, a year that culminated with CUNYAC Tournament MVP honors.

Just as potent at the dish and doubling in the circle was softball standout Christina D’Arpa.  The hard-throwing righty sported a career 36-18 record in the circle with a microscopic 1.85 career ERA, still standing as a school record.  She also stands third all-time at the College in wins and strikeouts while sporting a career batting average of a hefty .450 with a school best 19 triples to go with 168 hits and 116 RBI, both third all-time.  D’Arpa collected three CUNYAC Championships, winning CUNYAC Player of the Year in 2004, 2005, and 2007, taking Tournament MVP in 2005 and 2007.  Her 1.52 ERA and eight homeruns in 2007 remain school records within a single season.

Rounding out the distinguished list of honorees is long-tenured soccer skipper James Donlan who pioneered the Dolphins program on the pitch for three separate tours spanning almost four decades.  His first tour of service was from 1964-74 at SICC, a stint that included a four-year stretch that included two NJCAA Regional Championships and a 54-6-4 record.  He also coached the men’s golf team within that time at SICC.  The College suspended the soccer program for two seasons as SICC merged with Richmond College to create the four-year varsity program, and when play resumed Donlan led the program for its opening two years in 1977-78, leading the team from five games under to three games over .500 in just two seasons.  After departing from the program, Donlan returned from 1982-85 and from 1994-96, both times taking over the program following disastrous seasons and resurrecting the team to prosperity.  He ended his career with a CUNYAC Championship and CUNYAC Coach of the Year honors in 1996, and remains the SICC and CSI all-time wins leader in men’s soccer.  Donlan also served as an assistant coach to women’s basketball before his eventual retirement in the late 90’s.

The six honorees will be inaugurated collectively in October.  They were chosen among dozens of potential hopefuls, all nominated by the CSI and outside community.  A total of 12 members make up the Hall of Fame committee at the College, representing a cross-section of administrators, coaches, students, media and at-large members of the Staten Island community.

CSI Associate Athletic Director David Pizzuto, who has served as the committee’s Chairperson since 2010, was delighted with this year’s class.

“The task of selecting six individuals among so many deserving members is a tall task, but I couldn’t be happier with the selections,” he said.  “The Class of 2016 is one we can be extremely proud of.  Making the call to these individuals is one of the true highlights of my year.  These individuals set the course for excellence that has come to define our athletic programming today.  This event is humbling to be a part of and we can’t wait to honor these six individuals later this year.”

The inauguration event will take place at The Vanderbilt at South Beach located at 300 Father Capodanno Boulevard, on Thursday, October 27, 2016, from 6-10pm, and will feature a full three-course dinner with open bar.  Tickets can be purchased at $100 each per adult and $60 for children, by calling (718) 982-3169.  Donations, sponsorship opportunities and journal postings are also available.  For more information call (718) 982-3169 or log onto www.csidolphins.com.

[video] Christina Tufano named CUNYAC Female Scholar-Athlete of the Year

The CUNY Athletic Conference awarded its 2016 Scholar Athletes of the Year last night at the 30th Annual Michael Steuerman Scholar-Athlete Dinner held at Queens College, which featured as its headliner Christina Tufano as the conference’s Female Scholar-Athlete of the Year.  Hunter College wrestling star Dennis Melendez won on the men’s side of the senior college division, while CSI’s Sabrina Bragerton-Nasert (women’s tennis) and Greg Manassa (baseball) took home Honorable Mention honors.

The College of Staten Island’s Scholar-Athlete of the Year, Tufano has been a stalwart for the Dolphins’ four-time defending CUNYAC Champion Softball team, never missing a start in her career at third base.  A former CUNYAC Player of the Year and an All-Star every season, Tufano’s excellence on the diamond runs side-by-side with her proficiency in the classroom. A Psychology major, she boasts a 3.841 GPA as a Dean’s List scholar while serving as a Physical Therapy Aide with the Rehabilitation Physical Therapy Association of Staten Island.

[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7olUoshbLEc[/youtube]Christina crushed the record books in softball, breaking CSI career records this year in hits, RBIs, and doubles, and came within a single digit of tying more career records in at-bats and triples.  This season alone, she led the softball team in hitting, RBI, hits, triples, slugging percentage and on-base percentage. “The coaches always encourage hard work ethic on and off the field. I put a lot of pressure on myself, and our coaches always support us and make the game fun. They know how to get the best out of us,” Tufano said. Her inspiration not only comes from her coaches and teammates but Tufano owes a lot of her success to her family. “My parents and my brother are always there for me and support every decision I make. They come to every game, my dad came out to Texas earlier in the season. He’s my #1 fan.”

When reflecting back on her time spent at CSI and in the CUNYAC, Tufano says, “It was the best decision of my life; I can balance everything. I can work, play and excel in the classroom. I love what I do.” All told, Christina’s ability to not just manage, but excel in the academic and athletic arenas have left her as an inspiration for the entire student-athlete body and with the completion of her career, she will leave an enormous void on a team and program that has been synonymous with CUNYAC excellence for some time.

Tufano’s story was featured in a video segment at the dinner shown below.  She was presented by her Head Coach, Dr. Stella Porto, and was joined by CSI President Dr. William J. Fritz and Chief of Staff Kenichi Iwama at the dinner.  Tufano is only the third female recipient of this major award as CSI, Joining Gabriele Nagy in 1999 and Ilona Stoyko in 2014.

Tufano Earns NFCA All-Star Honors; Among Three CSI Scholar-Athletes Cited

2016 College of Staten Island Scholar-Athlete of the Year Christina Tufano earned that same recognition along with teammates Jacqueline Cautela and Vanessa Joia by the National Fastpitch Coaches Association this week, and the senior third-baseman doubled on the third-team All-East Region team, it was announced yesterday.  The NFCA awarded over 300 all-star citations yesterday in total spanning eight different regions.

Tufano earned on to the All-East team after a dazzling senior season that saw her hit .385, tied for a team best 47 hits along with team highs in triples, RBI, and slugging percentage.  She is a sure-fire four-time CUNYAC All-Star and former Player of the Year for the conference, who this year broke the school career record for hits, RBI, and doubles.

Christina Tufano receives CUNYAC-wide Female Scholar-Athlete of the Year citation at the Michael Steuerman Scholar-Athlete Awards Dinner.

She also doubles as an NFCA Scholar-Athlete, awarded for her cumulative GPA of 3.5 or better along with her proficiency on the diamond.  That was cited when she took home CSI Scholar-Athlete of the Year honors and she will receive the CUNYAC-wide Female Scholar-Athlete of the Year citation at the Michael Steuerman Scholar-Athlete Awards Dinner tomorrow, hosted by the CUNY Athletic Conference.

Joining her in Scholar-Athlete recognitions was Cautela and Joia.  Both were named to the NCAA All-Region Tournament Team this past weekend as well, and both sport an above 3.5 GPA in their respective disciplines.  Cautela was the team’s Most Valuable Player this season, sporting a 13-7 overall record in the circle with a 1.65 ERA with a team best 127 innings pitched and 114 strikeouts.  She also batted a whopping .367 in a team-best 128 at-bats with 44 runs scored and 18 doubles, both team highs.

A sophomore, Joia, batted a team-best .394 this season, scattering 9 extra base-hits and a team-best .453 on-base percentage.  She also sported a .993 glove behind the plate, committing a lone error in 152 chances behind the backstop.

CSI finished 26-14 this season, taking a game in the Ewing Regional this past weekend before suffering a pair of one-run losses that eliminated them from play.

Top Honors for Cautela and Sweeney at Annual Athletics Awards Banquet

After another rousing year, the College of Staten Island athletics program celebrated this evening, dishing out more than 60 awards at its annual awards banquet held at The Vanderbilt at South Beach in Staten Island, New York.  The annual event recognized the top performers and other distinguished award winners spanning CSI’s intercollegiate programs, with Female and Male Athlete of the Year honors collected by Softball’s Jacqueline Cautela and Men’s Swimming’s Tim Sweeney.

After greetings from Director of Athletics Charles Gomes and Deputy to the President Kenichi Iwama awards were given for each sport in chronological order beginning with teams last fall, and ending with women’s softball, which finalized its season with a CUNYAC title and remains the only sport left with games still on its schedule as part of the NCAA Division III National Championship.

Cautela, a junior, just took home CUNYAC Tournament MVP honors after tossing two no-hitters in the weekend tournament.  She finished with a .376 clip from the plate, pacing the team in runs scored, walks, and doubles, where she’s tied a single season record.  She also boasts a 13-6 record in the circle with a 1.70 ERA.  CSI swimming sensation Tim Sweeney raced to his award after a phenomenal season that saw him break CUNYAC records in the freestyle, individual medley and butterfly events, capping an MVP season with seven first place finishes at the CUNYAC Championship, where CSI took home their third-straight title.  A scholar-athlete, Sweeney was a Honorable Mention Scholar-Athlete All-America by the College Swimming Coaches Association of America, and was a six-time CollegeSwimming.com Performer of the Week.

CSI Scholar-Athlete of the Year honors was given to softball stalwart and senior Christina Tufano.  The decorated star and former Player of the Year broke school records for hits, RBI, and doubles this season and leads the team in hitting with a .398 average while sporting a 3.84 GPA majoring in Psychology. The award comes days before Tufano is slated to win the CUNYAC Female Scholar-Athlete of the Year.  The Department also honored the CSI Women’s Swimming & Diving team for posting CSI Athletics’ highest Team GPA, at 3.34.  It was their second-straight award win, lifting their GPA from last year’s 3.29.

Chris Pinto, a junior from both the men’s swimming and men’s tennis team, was awarded the 11th Annual Bill Cali/John Scrivani Sportsmanship Award, named after CSI’s former baseball skippers who earned similar honors from the Staten Island Advance in 2005.  The two-sport star overcame several injuries and was cited as an impeccable leader who displayed high character, as well as his overwhelming willingness to assist his teams by mastering diving on the swim platform and serving as the tennis teams ace after two personnel losses during midseason.

Overcoming injury was the theme for Samantha Wysokowski, who was awarded CSI’s 2nd Annual Sports Medicine Award, distributed by Head Athletic Trainer Joe Abruzzo.  The award is given to an outstanding athlete who displays courage and resiliency through injury and/or rehabilitation.  Wysokowski overcame a season-ending injury in 2014 to rebound and lead her team in scoring in goals in 2015 and its first CUNYAC title since 2011.

Midway through the ceremony, members of the CSI Student-Athlete Advisory Committee presented their 6th Annual G.L.O.V.E. Award to the CSI Men’s Soccer Team for their model of Giving, Leading, Organizing, Volunteering, and Encouraging.  The team spent countless hours in the community, teaming with organizations such as Project Hospitality and Bread 4 Life to name a few.

At the conclusion of the ceremony CSI honored its four-year seniors, 25 in total, with commemorative time pieces, issued to them by CSI President Dr. William J. Fritz and Gomes.

All told, the rousing event was a great success, according to the Athletic Director.

“Tonight is the culmination of a tremendous athletic year and it did not disappoint,” said Gomes.  “We get to honor some oustanding performances and what stood out to me was the concept oif Dolphin pride.  Between the teams giving out their individual awards, the major award winners and the senior gifts we gave the four-year letterwinners, it was an emotional night and we couldn’t be prouder.”

An end-of-year highlight video, prepared by CSI Events Manager Anthony Avena was the highlight of the evening.  The video will be posted below.  The CSI academic year will come to a close in the coming weeks, when Commencement will take place on June 2.

 

Macaulay Honors Student Receives Honorable Mention for Barry Goldwater Scholarship

Naomi Gaggi presenting neuroscience research to CUNY administrators and government officials at the New York Legislative Office Building, Albany, NY.

Some students are student athletes; some are researchers or scholars.  Some study abroad, help in the community, and plan to devote their career to helping individuals on the Autism Spectrum.

Naomi Gaggi ’17 chose all of the above.

The Brooklyn native student at the Macaulay Honors College (MHC) recently received an Honorable Mention for the prestigious Barry Goldwater Scholarship.

However, her scholarship and achievements do not simply end there.

Gaggi is also a New York Trust Fund Scholarship Recipient, a Meyer Scholar, a National Collegiate Scholar, a Dean’s Undergraduate Research Fellowship Award winner, and a Dean’s List student.

The College of Staten Island (CSI) Psychology major with a concentration in Neuroscience and Autism Spectrum Disorders is naturally not content with simply wading through college with multiple scholarships and awards.  Gaggi is also an active member of CSI’s Women’s Swimming and Diving Team, securing her place as a CUNY Athletics Conference All-Star and CollegeSwimming.com Swimmer of the Week, both in 2016, and receiving the CSI Women’s Swimming & Diving Team Coach’s Award (2014 – 2015) and Rookie of the Year Award (2013 – 2014).

Naomi Gaggi at the 2015 CUNYAC Championships

A St. Joseph Hill Academy graduate, Gaggi does have some method to her college madness. “I am highly adamant in the importance of time management and being proactive in all aspects of being a student, not only in the classroom. I strive to exemplify a well-rounded student by maintaining a high GPA and being socially committed to my college and my community,” said Gaggi, adding that CSI Head Coach Michael Ackalitis has pushed her to grow as both a student and an athlete by stressing the importance of balancing athletic and academic life.

Her commitment to her community is apparent in her work with autistic children and adults that she has enjoyed since high school. She is also an active research assistant in two labs on campus, working with Dr. Patricia J. Brooks, Dr. Daniel McCloskey, Dr. Kristen Gillespie-Lynch, and Dr. Bertram O. Ploog and has conducted research at the Yale University School of Medicine, conducting neural imaging research with Dr. Joy Hirsch. She is also a member of Psi Chi, the CSI Student Athlete Advisory Committee, and the American Sign Language Club.

While Gaggi thanks many of her CSI professors and mentors, she praised in particular Dr. Daniel McCloskey, one of her research advisors, who has been “extremely welcoming.” McCloskey, a recent recipient of the Presidential Early Career Award for Scientists and Engineers, encouraged the young researcher to work on projects in his lab where she discovered her keen interest in neuroscience.

In her spare time, the 21 year old has taken advantage of CSI’s Study Abroad program, traveling to Copenhagen, Denmark in the summer of 2015. This summer, she plans to volunteer abroad in Kandy, Sri Lanka to aid in the care of children with Autism Spectrum Disorders. Both abroad experiences are funded by the Macaulay Honors College Opportunities Fund and the New York Trust Grant Scholarship.

Gaggi also lauded Dr. Charles Liu and the MHC staff as well as Fellowship and Scholarship Advisor at CSI’s Career and Scholarship Center Michele Galati for the constant support and guidance she has received throughout her journey at CSI. “Ms. Galati puts in as much effort into my applications as I do. She is extremely helpful and always finds the opportunities that match me perfectly,” said Gaggi.

After graduation, Gaggi plans to obtain a PhD in Neuropsychology/Cognitive and Behavioral Neuroscience to research and understand the etiology of neurological disorders. “My goals are to find the neuromarkers of autism and learn more about the ‘social’ brain of autism,” Gaggi said, adding that she plans to apply this knowledge to treating patients in a clinical setting as well as teaching at the university level.