J. Michael Parrish Named Interim Provost and Senior VP for Academic Affairs

Dr. J. Michael Parrish has been named interim Provost and Senior Vice President for Academic Affairs at The City University of New York’s College of Staten Island, pending Board of Trustees approval of his appointment to the position on a non-interim basis.

Dr. Parrish has a career in higher education spanning 40 years. He began his academic career as a teaching assistant at the University of California Santa Cruz. During his graduate study at the University of Chicago, he served as a Research Assistant in the Department of Anatomy. Subsequently, he held research appointments at the Field Museum of Natural History in Chicago and the University of Colorado Museum. Next, he served on the faculty of the Department of Biological Sciences at Northern Illinois
University, where he rose to Chair and received the appointment of Presidential Research Professor for outstanding scholarship.

From 2006 to 2018, Dr. Parrish held two academic leadership positions at San Jose State University, first as Dean of the College of Science and Professor, Department of Biological Sciences, and then Special Advisor to the Provost. During this time, he spearheaded a number of initiatives involving strategic planning, facilities planning and improvement, student success, faculty recruitment and workload, faculty and student research, program development, accreditation and assessment, and development.

Dr. Parrish holds a PhD in Anatomy from the University of Chicago, and BAs in Chemistry and Biology from the University of California, Santa Cruz. During his career, he has published myriad journal articles and book chapters on a wide range of paleontological issues.

New Interim Provost and Senior VP for Academic Affairs

I am happy to officially announce Dr. Michael Parrish as CSI’s incoming Provost and Senior Vice President for Academic Affairs. Effective January 22, 2019, Dr. Parrish will serve in an interim capacity pending approval on a non-interim basis by the Board of Trustees. Please see the online announcement regarding Michael’s career and accomplishments.

Dr. Gary Reichard is on vacation until Monday, Jan. 7, 2019, when he will separate from his position as Provost and Senior Vice President for Academic Affairs and will become Professor Emeritus.  Please direct any concerns or issues that would normally go to the Provost to Associate Provost Mel Pipe who will serve as administrator in charge of Academic Affairs until Dr. Parrish’s arrival.

Convocation – A Celebration of Accomplishments

I am pleased to remind you that the College’s 2018 Convocation will be taking place today at 2:30pm in the Center for the Arts (Building 1P) Williamson Theatre.

In commemoration of this event, I am also pleased to provide you with the Celebration of Accomplishments, which presents some of our major institutional achievements over the past year.

Last year, we focused on the adoption of our new Strategic Plan, Opportunity to Ascend, Strategic Priorities for the College of Staten Island 2017 – 2022. Today, we highlight some of our achievements in support of the plan and the people who make that vision a reality.

Convocation is defined as the action of calling people together. All of our accomplishments are the result of the “coming together” of our College community–our faculty, staff, students, alumni, and friends. Because of your efforts, we have much to celebrate this year.

Thank you and I look forward to seeing you at Convocation.

A Letter from President Fritz to the College Community Regarding Recent Horrific Incidents

I write to you today to condemn the hatred and bigotry that have motivated a series of recent heinous crimes: the massacre of Jewish congregants at the Tree of Life Synagogue in Pittsburgh; the random murder of two African Americans as they shopped for groceries in Louisville; and, the sending of explosive devices to leaders in New York City and other cities.

We grieve for the Americans murdered in Pittsburgh and Louisville, acts against humanity that should concern and horrify us all.  All of us have to fight the rise of anti-Semitism and hateful rhetoric against those who look, love, or pray differently. We must also stand against similar hateful persons who seek to advance their abhorrent ideas through the use of violence and terror.

Throughout its history, the College of Staten Island has welcomed students and scholars of every race, religion, sexual orientation, or gender identity to pursue their educational interests and passions. We have stood for open, respectful discourse, and we categorically reject anyone seeking to promote hatred and bigotry – it has no place on our campus.

Our thoughts and prayers go out to all of those affected by these events.  Please know that counseling services are available for members of our community.

  • Students may contact the CSI Counseling Center: 718.982.2391 or walk-in at your convenience during business hours in Building 1A, Room 109.  You can come in alone, with a friend, or in a group – just give them a call. More information is available online.
  • Employees may contact the Deer Oaks Employee Assistance Program to speak with a licensed mental health counselor at  855.492.3633 (24 hours/day) or email: eap@deeroaks.com.


President’s Annual Reaffirmation of the College of Staten Island’s Commitment to Diversity, Equal Opportunity, and Affirmative Action

As the 2018-2019 academic year begins, I would like to take this opportunity to reaffirm the College of Staten Island’s (CSI) commitment to augmenting its diversity and inclusion efforts in all aspects of its employment practices.

At CSI, we value the differences in people and recognize that individuals with different backgrounds, skills, attitudes, and experiences bring fresh ideas and perspectives to our campus community. Recruiting from diverse candidate pools helps to establish a more creative, innovative, and qualified workforce. In turn, having a diverse workforce fosters curiosity and helps cultivate overall student development by providing greater opportunities for personal and professional growth.

Consequently, I fully support the policies and practices that we, along with The City University of New York (CUNY), have implemented to foster non-discrimination, affirmative action, and diversity and inclusion in the workplace. In fact, it is my personal belief that the College is enriched by the strengths of the people and perspectives represented here and I am dedicated to overseeing CSI’s compliance with CUNY’s Policy on Equal Opportunity and Non-Discrimination, as well as CUNY’s Policy on Sexual Misconduct.

The Equal Opportunity and Non-Discrimination Policy states CUNY’s commitment to recruit, employ, retain, promote, and provide benefits to employees, and to admit and provide services for students, regardless of race, color, creed, national origin, ethnicity, ancestry, religion, age, sex, sexual orientation, gender, gender identity, marital status, partnership status, disability, genetic information, alienage, citizenship, military or veteran status, unemployment status, pregnancy, or status as a victim of domestic violence/stalking/sex offenses, or any other legally prohibited basis in accordance with federal, state, and city laws. I remind you that Italian Americans are included among CUNY’s protected groups. Additionally, as a federal contractor, CUNY engages in affirmative action consistent with federal requirements. I invite you to view the Equal Opportunity Policyin its entirety, including the complaint procedures and prohibition against retaliation.

I have assigned the responsibility for the implementation and monitoring of our compliance program to the Interim Chief Diversity Officer, Catherine Ferrara, Esq., who will also serve as the 504/ADA Compliance Coordinator and the Title IX Coordinator. The vice presidents, deans, directors, managers, and supervisors share responsibility for ensuring our compliance with these policies and laws. The Office of Diversity and Compliance is located in Building 1A, Room 205 and the telephone number is 718.982.2250. Additionally, any individual who believes that he or she has experienced employment discrimination should immediately contact Ms. Ferrara.

The College remains committed to promoting diversity and equal opportunity for all, and to creating an environment in which all community members can thrive. With this in mind, I am pleased to report that the College has commenced the implementation of its Strategic Plan for 2017–2022, which includes six strategic priorities:  Student Success, Global Engagement, Borough Stewardship, Destination Campus, Scholarship-Driven Education, and Resource Management as well as a restatement of CSI’s Mission, Vision, and Values. The College continues to work toward achieving various goals in advancing each of these priorities.

Accordingly, I ask for your continued support in CSI’s quest to encourage proactive initiatives intended to increase diversity and to provide equal opportunity through its employment practices. Your support of campus diversity-related events is always welcome and I look forward to continuing to work with all of you to create an even more inclusive campus climate.


CSI’s Convocation 2018

Please save the date of Thursday, Dec. 6, 2018 for CSI’s Convocation 2018, which will take place in the Center for the Arts (Building 1P) Williamson Theater at 2:30pm.

As part of our Convocation, we will once again be honoring full-time members of the College community who have reached service milestones.

Additionally, our College Holiday Reception will be held in the 1P Atrium immediately following the event.

I hope that you will be able to join us for this annual campus community tradition.