As you may have read in the news, U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement has modified the rules governing the Student Exchange and Visitor Program (SEVP) for this fall. Most notably, in order to maintain status, students who are in the U.S. with an F-1 visa will be required to take at least one in-person course.
Many of you have already expressed concern over the continued progress of our international students at CSI. The Center for Global Engagement, along with the President, the Provost, and the Deans are working hard to ensure that our students will be able to continue their studies and remain in the U.S. this fall. Chancellor Matos Rodriguez has issued a statement in support of our international students and decrying the rule change, and President Fritz has emailed all of our students earlier today emphasizing our commitment to their continued success here at CSI. In his statement, the Chancellor noted that “CUNY campuses have thousands of international students whose status is threatened by the new rule. These students are a valuable and a vital part of our community. I have instructed my administration to explore and pursue measures that would help these students remain in the country and continue their education at CUNY.”
Please know that CSI is taking this mandate very seriously and exploring all options for our F1 students. Alongside CUNY, we are developing a plan that will allow all of our CSI international students to stay in the U.S. this coming term and beyond. Our strategy may include a range of course options that meet the new ICE guidance while protecting the immigration status of our students, as well as protecting the health, safety, and welfare of our students, faculty, and staff. Further, we understand that each passing minute creates anxiety for our students and our faculty and have an “all-hands-on deck” approach to resolving this quickly.
As we learn more from SEVP and develop our own solutions, we will be communicating with you, our students, and the community. In the meantime, please do not hesitate to contact either of us with any questions.
Thank you for your continued support of our international students.
We are disappointed by this ruling and understand that this action is causing anxiety and worry for many of our students. We also recognize the invaluable contributions and ideas that international students bring not only to our campus, but to all of CUNY, enriching the outlook and perspective of all students.
Although this is a developing situation, I want to assure you that the College, along with CUNY, is reviewing all possible means of ensuring the academic and immigration status of our international students. I will contact you regarding any avenues of mitigation as soon as possible.
Until then, please remember that you are a valued member of our College community and we will do everything within our power so that you may remain in this country to pursue your studies and secure a bright future.
The 34th Annual Conference of Phi Beta Delta, the Honor Society for International Scholars will be held on Thursday and Friday, May 14-15, 2020 as an Online Web Conference. This year’s theme is “International Education in Our Changing World.”
While the events of this term have required that we move away from our traditional campus-based formats and engage in more remote forms of learning and sharing, we should not turn away from the pressing global issues that remain present. Our World on Wednesday lecture series was designed to bring a glimpse of the larger global environment to all of us at CSI. The spring 2020 series continued as planned but were delivered via recordings in an online format. Many of you have had the opportunity to watch these lectures already but we wanted to ensure that you still had the chance to see them again, or for the first time.
As such, we are delighted to announce the Spring 2020 World on Wednesday (WOW) Lecture Series featuring faculty and staff from across the campus are now all archived online and you can view these at your leisure until the end of August 2020.
Speaker: Michele Callahan, Fellowship and Scholarship Opportunities
Summary: Michele Callahan, Scholarship Advisor from the Fellowship and Scholarship Office speaks about the Fulbright U.S. Student Program opportunity for the CSI community. Come and learn about this prestigious program.
Summary: Women’s Equal Pay Day in the U.S. for 2020 was Tuesday, Mar. 31. To highlight this occasion, Dr. Alyson Bardsley, Associate Professor in the English Department and the Program in Women’s Gender and Sexuality Studies, and co-Director of the Bertha Harris Women’s Center, presented on the causes and effects of gender-based pay inequality in several international contexts.
Speaker: Amy Posner, Hillel Multifaith Center and Mr. Arthur Spielman, a holocaust survivor
Summary: Amy Posner, Multifaith Center, Hillel at the College of Staten Island will give an introduction to antisemitism from a historical perspective and how it is manifested today. Mr. Arthur Spielman, who lived through those times, will share his early life experience. Come and listen to a first-hand and personal experience of a holocaust survivor’s story.
Two alumnae from the College of Staten Island and the Center for Global Engagement, one near San Jose, CA and the other on Staten Island, connected to achieve something very special during these difficult times—providing area medical facilities with much-needed Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) for healthcare workers on the front lines of the COVID-19 crisis.
when Qimei Luo ’11, Head of Marketing and PR at Lino Network in Cupertino, CA,
took it upon herself to fundraise among her friends and connections on social
media to secure the equipment from Asia, which includes N95 masks, so that it
could be redirected to medical facilities in the U.S. that desperately needed
Winnie Brophy of CSI’s Center for Global Engagement learned of Luo’s initiative via social media and connected Luo with Phuong Nguyen ’04, ’08, a nurse at Staten Island University Hospital (SIUH) North Division-Northwell Health. Nguyen then contacted her supervisors who okayed receipt of 3,000 PPE. If there is continued need at SIUH, Luo will continue to work with Nguyen to forward additional supplies.
thanks to Luo’s efforts, South Beach Psychiatric Center gained 900 masks and
the Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai in Manhattan received 1,000 masks. Luo
also secured masks for Montefiore Medical Center ICU in the Bronx and the Lehigh
Valley Health Network in PA.
One of the
professionals to directly benefit from these efforts is Robert Miller ‘11, a
social worker aide at South Beach Psychiatric who is also a Center for Global
Engagement alumnus. He commented that “It’s been a tremendous help to have the
support of CSI alumni. Qimei has been running around getting thousands of masks
donated across the country! I’m so thankful for her and all of her donors
coming together at a time like now to make sure hospital workers have the
protection they need to do their jobs. Its inspiring to see so many examples of
compassion right now!
on the efforts of Luo and Nguyen, Brophy said, “I am very proud of our CSI
alumni, Phuong and Qimei helping each other over 3,000 miles away. I am proud
of their initiatives of helping each other, especially since I knew them since
they were freshmen. It always makes you feel good when you know you’re helping.
It is wonderful to find how ordinary people are working together to do
extraordinary things. It doesn’t matter how big or how small!”
Luo has raised more than $40,000 toward this effort and has supplied PPE not only to medical institutions in NYC, but also in Los Angeles and MA. She continues to raise funds to keep this effort going.
Beginning on Monday, the Center for Global Engagement will be open by appointment only.
Advisors are available for teleconferencing Monday through Friday, 9:00am to 5:00pm.
Our Website and voicemail announce this as well.
The voicemail will be monitored from 9:00am to 5:00pm, Monday through Friday, as well the email account. All voicemails and emails will be routed to the appropriate advisor who will quickly return the email or phone call.
Advisors are available from 9:00am to 5:00pm for online meetings.
Face-to-face appointments are being used for only two vital activities that require face-to-face verification. We expect these incidences to be rare.
Email is email@example.com
Phone is 718.982.2100
Monitor/Contact in AM is Terry Degeata
Monitor/Contact in PM is Laura Medina
Our voice mail and Websites also indicate an emergency contact after hours to contact Public Safety, who will reach me.
There will be a staff member who comes in three times per week to check mail and make important deposits, and complete other campus-only related activities, but isn’t expected to open the door for business.
We are delighted to announce the Spring 2020 World on Wednesday (WOW) Lecture Series featuring faculty and staff from across the campus. WOW lectures bring the world to CSI students and faculty and are designed to teach our community more about the world, culture, politics, and human rights. This term we’re bringing the world to CSI through these lectures:
Title: Fulbright U.S. Student Program Opportunity
Summary: Michele Callahan, Scholarship Advisor from the Fellowship and Scholarship Office will speak about the Fulbright U.S. Student Program opportunity to the CSI community. Come and learn about this prestigious program.
Title: The Gender Pay Gap Around the World
Summary: Women’s Equal Pay Day in the U.S. for 2020 is Tuesday, Mar. 31. To highlight this occasion, Dr. Alyson Bardsley, Associate Professor in the English Department and the Program in Women’s Gender and Sexuality Studies, and Co-Director of the Bertha Harris Women’s Center, will present on the causes and effects of gender-based pay inequality in several international contexts.
Title: Culture of Argentina/Argentina in Language, Culture, and Customs/Argentinian Traditions
Summary: Leonardo Pignataro from Student Success will share his heritage as an Argentine, as well as the country’s culture and its soccer, food, and elegant architecture.
Title: Antisemitism – A History of Hate
Summary: Amy Posner, Multifaith Center, Hillel at the College of Staten Island, will give an introduction to antisemitism from an historical perspective and how it is manifested today. Mr. Arthur Spielman who lived through those times, will share his early life experience. Come and listen to a first-hand and personal experience of a Holocaust survivor’s story.
Title: Bulgaria-The Land of Roses
Summary: Join us for a special presentation from four overseas scientists from the Bulgarian Academy of Sciences and former Bulgarian Minister of Foreign Affairs, Dr. Solomon Passy. Our special guests will share with you the beauty of Bulgaria, a Balkan nation with its natural variety of mountains, plains, lakes, and rivers. The scientists are Bela Yonkova Vasileva, Dessislava Nikolaeva Staneva, George Angelov Miloshev, and Milena Georgieva Vasileva.
Please encourage your students and colleagues to attend these terrific lectures on campus. Each lecture will take place either at the Campus Center (Building 1C) Green Dolphin Lounge or Room 211 from 12:20pm to 1:10pm on Wednesday’s during the term.
The World on Wednesday lecture series is sponsored by the Center for Global Engagement. It is a CC CLUE event. If you wish to present, please contact Winnie Brophy at 718.982.2100 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
Online, you will find a printable flyer for you to post on your door or forward to others who may be interested.
As a non-native English speaker, RinZhi Go Larocque ’16 began her college experience at the College of Staten Island (CSI) by entering the CUNY Language Immersion Program (CLIP). The Program, administered through CSI’s Office of Continuing Education and Professional Development, allows students the opportunity to study English for an intensive period of time before enrolling in formal college courses.
Now, named as Valedictorian of the Class of 2016, Larocque reflects on how CSI helped her achieve her goals.
“Think of the Dolphin, our school mascot. Like dolphins that nurture their young, CSI has nurtured me,” said Larocque, who is also a Verrazano School student.
Born in Malaysia, Larocque moved to the United States in 2012. She attributes her success in academics, research and even perfecting her English, to the faculty at the College. “CSI has helped me to completely immerse myself in English, as well as American society and culture,” she said.
The Brooklyn resident has volunteered in Indonesia, Singapore, Ecuador, and her home country, Malaysia, where she was Valedictorian of the Pontian Government High School class. In 2010, Larocque was a visiting scholar and programmer for the Labyrinth Project: Jewish Homegrown History, Immigration, Identity and Intermarriage.
At CSI, Larocque has taken advantage of research opportunities in biology and computer science with CSI professors and has collaborated with scientists and engineers from The City University of New York (CUNY) Advanced Research Center to develop software and publications on algorithms for the analysis of scientific data. As a multi-disciplinary student of computer programming, biology, and business, she has learned to present her research findings to people in different fields at multiple conferences.
The determined and passionate student has also been invited to give motivational speeches at more than five College events, including the CSI Celestial Ball and the scholarship receptions at the residence of CSI President Dr. William J. Fritz. She is also a member of the CUNY Service Corps and a research assistant at the Healthy CUNY Initiative.
“Being an active college student, I am able to broaden my network of connections, locally and globally, which have helped me tremendously to serve in leadership roles on campus,” she commented, adding that being a student in The Verrazano School Honors Program has “given me a badge of prestige and pride as an honor student.”
The Biology major with a minor in Business is a recipient of almost a dozen awards and scholarships, including the National Grid Scholarship (August 2015), Ernesto Malave Merit Scholarship (August 2015), Who’s Who Among Students in American Universities and Colleges Honor Recipient (May 2015), The CUNY Summer Undergraduate Research Program at Advanced Science Research Center (May 2015), CSI Honors Undergraduate Research Stipend (2014-2016), Clara and Arleigh B Williamson Scholarship (2014-2015), CSI Student Government Scholarship (2014-2015), Aloha Mind Math USA Teacher Award (2013), CSI Foundation Scholarship (2013-2014), Dean’s List (2012-2015), and Winner of the CUNY Intercollegiate ESL Essay Writing Competition (2013).
While an impressive and accomplished individual in her college endeavors and beyond, Larocque says she does not forget her “humble beginnings,” which motivate her to volunteer. “My own perseverance has been indelibly instilled in me by my father, a fisherman and my principle role model. Despite rampant piracy and the destructive typhoon seasons on the Straits of Melaka, he continued to go fishing to support a family of six,” explained Larocque, adding that her mother, father, two sisters and brother all currently live in Malaysia.
The busy student just returned from volunteering in the Amazon rainforest over spring break to help forest conservation and minimize hunger “by helping the local communities to truly advance in agriculture and stand on their own feet.”
“I have learned to scrutinize how health issues intertwine with diverse cultures through many of my volunteer experiences. For instance, volunteering in Indonesia, I found out that their natives chew on raw sugarcane to whiten teeth,” said Larocque, who also works as a hospice volunteer as well as with the CUNY Language Immersion Program, helping prospective CSI students from other countries assimilate in their new society.
Adding even more breadth to the young woman’s repertoire, Larocque’s artistic training includes many years of playing the violin and piano as well as watercolor painting. She is the winner of multiple competitions in Calligraphy Writing, and has a yellow belt in Taekwando. Larocque currently serves as a tutor in the CSI Office of Academic Support, assisting students in calculus, biology, and inorganic and organic chemistry.
Already a dental assistant, medical biller, and coder with Boss Dental PC, in Brooklyn, Larocque has been accepted to several dental schools, including New York University, and will be attending the Doctor of Dental Surgery program at the University at Buffalo this summer. She plans to become an oral and maxillofacial surgeon and also a lifelong supporter of the College. “I would like to invest my faith, trust, and money in the younger generations at CSI, for the pursuit of knowledge and education, just as my scholarships donors, such as Mr. [Frank] Lombardo [Executive Advisor to the President] from National Grid, have done,” she said, adding that she would also like to continue volunteering locally and globally.
“My educational endeavors at CSI have taught me that life’s obstacles can be turned into assets if one is diligent, clever, and able to recognize opportunity,” Larocque promises.