Professors Maita Gupta and Catherine Franklin Named Fulbright Scholars
School of Education faculty members Amita Gupta and Catherine Franklin have received 2009-2010 Fulbright Scholar grants for research and teaching abroad. Dr. Gupta, an Associate Professor whose expertise includes early childhood education and teacher education in international contexts, will travel to South Asia this fall to conduct research in India, Sri Lanka and Maldives. She will examine current directions in early education and urban teacher preparation policies in response to the effects of globalization in Asia. Dr. Franklin, an Assistant Professor and curriculum design specialist who has taught on three continents, will spend the Spring 2010 semester in Slovakia. There she will teach courses in the Department of Ethics and Civic Education at Comenius University in Bratislava. As a visiting scholar and teacher educator, she plans to help candidates in the University's teacher preparation program construct engaging social studies experiences for the middle school classroom. Fulbright Scholar grants are given out annually to leading U.S. faculty and professionals by the United States Department of State and the J. William Fulbright Board for study, teaching or research abroad. More on this story.
Jeremy Joffee Wins Silver In Student Academy Awards
Jeremy Joffee, a 2008 graduate of the M.F.A. program in Media Arts Production at The City College of New York (CCNY), received the Silver Medal in the Narrative category at the 36th Annual Student Academy Awards for his thesis film, “The Bronx Balletomane.” The award was presented at a June 13 ceremony in Beverly Hills, Calif. The 30-minute movie is a father and daughter tale about two tough souls from the Bronx who overcome their inner fears and take an unexpected step into the world of ballet that will forever change their lives. The award to Mr. Joffee is the second won by a graduate of CCNY in the past three years. In 2006, Carmen Vidal Balanzat received the Silver Medal for “6AM” in the Alternative category. More on this story.
Doris Cintron Named Acting Dean of School of Education
Dr. Doris Cintron has been appointed Acting Dean of City College’s School of Education, effective June 1. She will hold that position while the College conducts a search for a permanent successor to Alfred Posamentier, who has retired. Dean Cintron had been Assistant Dean of Education since 1998. A CCNY alumna, she joined the faculty 16 years ago as an Assistant Professor of Bilingual Education after receiving her Ed.D. degree from Columbia University’s Teachers College. The native of Puerto Rico, who was raised in the South Bronx, is the first woman and first Hispanic to serve as Dean of CCNY’s School of Education, which was established in 1921 and is the oldest public school of education in New York City. One of Dean Cintron’s goals is to establish a greater community presence for the School of Education. “I see the School as a vehicle for community development and transformation,” she says. “The caliber of our faculty and students, and their dedication to urban education, makes us unique.” In a global society, education schools have many stakeholders, Dean Cintron notes. Consequently, she wants to engage the business community and not-for-profits as part of a strategy to serve The City College School of Education’s myriad constituencies.
Natalie Mason-Kinsey to Head Affirmative Action
Natalie L. Mason-Kinsey has been appointed Director of Affirmative Action, Compliance and Diversity at CCNY. She started June 15. Ms. Mason-Kinsey, a native of Seattle who now lives in Brooklyn with her husband and son, joins from Hostos Community College where she served as Director of Affirmative Action for more than four years. In announcing her appointment, President Williams called her “an invaluable addition to the CCNY community as we continue striving for excellence in all facets of the institution.” A graduate of the University of Washington and Howard University School of Law, she began her career in affirmative action as a law clerk for the Howard University Office of General Counsel. There, she worked on affirmative action, sexual harassment and ADA (Americans with Disabilities Act) matters. “I found the work interesting and exciting, she says. “There was always something different to handle.”
Sally Hoskins’ C.R.E.A.T.E.-ivity Wins with Students
For the second consecutive year and the third time since 2001, graduating seniors in the CCNY Division of Science CCAPP (City College Academy of Professional Preparation) program have selected Dr. Sally Hoskins, Professor of Biology, to receive the CCAPP “Teacher of the Year” Award. No other faculty member has won as often, according to Dr. Millicent Roth, the program director. Professor Hoskins attributes her popularity with students to the appeal of her Biology 355 class, “Analysis of Scientific Literature with C.R.E.A.T.E.,” an upper-level elective for biology and other science majors. “Students who have taken the class have told me that it has helped them do better in other classes they take later on,” she says. BIO 355 employs a teaching method developed by Professor Hoskins and Dr. Leslie M. Stevens, a University of Texas geneticist, called C.R.E.A.T.E. that teaches students how to critically read scientific papers. The goal is for students to master “the universal language of data analysis.” Professor Hoskins’ method of teaching is giving students a new way of approaching scientific literature “that works for them,” notes Dr. Roth. “She’s really trying to be innovative in science education and students recognize that.” More on this story.
Alumni Honor Joyce Conoly-Simmons, Joan Newman
Joyce Conoly-Simmons, Academic Support and Supplemental Instruction Coordinator for CCNY’s SEEK Program, received the 2009 Faculty Service Award from the CCNY Alumni Association at the Association’s 157th Annual Meeting, Thursday, June 11. In addition, the Association presented its new Administrative Service Award to Joan Newman, Deputy to the Dean of the School of Education. Professor Conoly-Simmons, who joined CCNY as a research assistant in 1968, was honored for her more than 40 years of contributions to the academic and social welfare of the College’s students. She has worked with SEEK (Search for Education, Elevation, and Knowledge), the College’s Higher Education Opportunity Program, for more than 30 years and has been the program’s Instruction Coordinator since 2001. Ms. Newman has served as Deputy to the Dean of the School of Education since 2000, where she is respected by faculty and students alike as a “problem-solver supreme.” In addition to her direct responsibilities to the Dean of the school, she serves as Director of the School of Education Study Abroad Program, heads the CCNY Austrian Teacher Program and sits on several committees including the annual Einstein Student Research Conference. More on this story.
CCNY Team to Study Greenland’s Supraglacial Lakes
Supraglacial lakes are pools of liquid water that collect on the surfaces of glaciers during summer months as a consequence of melting. Because of the huge pressure created by the water over the ice, they can empty out in a matter of hours. Dr. Marco Tedesco, City College Assistant Professor of Earth and Atmospheric Sciences (EAS), wants to find out how much water these lakes store and where it goes. He and EAS graduate student Nick Steiner are traveling to Greenland in late June and early July to study the connection between the formation of these ponds and the melting of Greenland’s ice sheet. Their project is supported by CUNY, the World Wildlife Foundation and NASA. After spending a few days in the Greenland village of Iulissat on the west coast, they will be taken by helicopter to the ice sheet, where they will camp for eight days and collect data using a remote controlled boat outfitted with GPS, a fish finder (for measuring depth), a spectrometer, an underwater video camera and a microcomputer. Some of the equipment will measure flow of water in and out of the lakes and will collect water samples for studying the water’s biological and chemical properties, as well. More on this story.
NOAA-CREST Engineers Fight Malaria in Namibia
A team of engineers with CCNY’s NOAA-CREST Center is applying remote sensing data to model outbreaks of malaria and help the southwest African nation of Namibia protect against them. Their efforts could help one of the world’s poorest nations more effectively allocate scarce resources to combat the deadly disease and save lives. Unprecedented flooding in northern areas of Namibia has resulted in outbreaks of malaria that have affected as many as one quarter of the country’s two million people, notes Dr. Leonid Roytman, Professor of Electrical Engineering in The Grove School of Engineering and principal investigator on health issues for the project. “Remote sensing can identify environmental conditions that are conductive to breeding of mosquitoes, which carry malaria, as well as conditions that cause water-borne diseases,” he adds. The CCNY team is analyzing data from both polar-orbiting and geostationary satellites on vegetation growth, moisture, land temperature and sea surface temperature to develop models that can predict when and where incidence of malaria is likely to occur as much as four months into the future. More on this story.
Foxe: Autistic Children Need Smaller Classes, Less Noise
Dr. John J. Foxe, Professor of Neuroscience at CCNY, announced at the 10th Annual meeting of the International Multisensory Research Forum, held here, that conclusive evidence verifies that individuals with autism have difficulty in understanding speech in situations where there is background speech or noise. The issue had been subject to extensive debate dating to the 1970s. “Sensory integration dysfunction has long been speculated to be a core component of autism spectrum disorder but there has been precious little hard empirical evidence to support this notion, he told the more than 400 scientists from around the world attending the gathering. “Viewing a speaker’s articulatory movements can greatly improve a listener’s ability to understand spoken words, and this is especially the case under noisy environmental conditions. These results are the first of their kind to verify that children with Autism have substantial difficulties in these situations, and this has major implications for how we go about teaching these children in the classroom.” He called for teaching of children with autism in smaller classrooms with carefully controlled background noise levels. Dr. Sophie Molholm, Associate Professor of Psychology and Cognitive Neuroscience at CCNY, served as local organizer for the conference, which ran June 29 through July 2. More on this story.
2 Neuroscientists Get $2.8 Million for Autism Research
Drs. Sophie Molholm and John Foxe, neuroscientists at The City College of New York (CCNY), have been awarded $2.8 million over five years from the National Institute of Mental Heath of the National Institutes of Health to study whether and how multisensory integration – the nervous system’s integration of different sensory stimuli – is impaired in persons with autism. “Atypical integration of multisensory inputs has been suggested as a major component of autism,” said Dr. Molholm, an Associate Professor of Psychology and Cognitive Neuroscience at CCNY. “If we can learn when and where in the neural processing stream these sensory integration deficits occur, this knowledge will play an essential role in defining the neuropathology of autism.” She and Dr. Foxe, a Professor of Psychology and Cognitive Neuroscience at CCNY and Director of the College’s graduate program in Cognitive Neuroscience, intend to compare multisensory integration in subjects with autism with that in healthy control subjects. By obtaining high-density electrical recordings of neural activity, they will be able to precisely measure when in the information processing stream sensory integration differs. More on this story.
Conference at CCNY Explores Cyber Threats, Prevention
More than 100 experts on network and telecommunications security from academia, government and industry attended a two-day conference on Cyber Infrastructure Protection: Policy and Strategy, June 4 – 5. The event was sponsored by The Grove School’s Center for Information Networking and Telecommunications and the U.S. Army War College’s Strategic Studies Institute. Attendees heard experts from the National Defense University describe a scenario whereby a powerful, aggressor nation could use cyber warfare to conquer a weaker neighbor within a week. Dr. Peter Tippett, founder of ISCA Labs, discussed how network managers who know their network can block most attacks. Krishan Sabnani, vice president of networking research at Bell Labs, warned about new types of denial of service attacks that affect mobile data networks. Nasir Memon, Professor of Computer Science and Engineering at the Polytechnic Institute of NYU, advised chief information officers to stop focusing on intrusion detection and prevention systems and start dealing with the computers on their networks that have already been compromised by cybercriminals. Anup Ghosh, Research Professor and Chief Scientist at George Mason University’s Center for Secure Information Systems (CSIS), described a novel approach to protect against accidental malware infections, known as drive-by download attacks. More on this story.
CCNY Faculty, Alumni at World Science Festival
CCNY was well represented at the World Science Festival, a four-day event aimed at cultivating public interest, awareness and support for science that was held in New York June 10 – 14. Nobel Laureate and CCNY alumnus Leon Lederman, ’43, participated in “Matter: Stories of Atoms and Eves,” a panel discussion in which Nobel prize-winning scientists, renowned writers and esteemed artists told on-stage stories about their personal relationship with science. Ofer Tchernichovski, Associate Professor of Biology and Director of CCNY’s Animal Behavior Laboratory, took part in a session titled “Avian Einsteins.” The panelists, who included biologists, psychologists, neuroscientists, philosophers, musicians and writers, explored how striking parallels between bird and human brains are providing new insights into how we acquire language and links between hearing and movement. The NOAA-CREST Center presented a hands-on weather activity as part of the Festival’s Street Fair held in Washington Square Park. Participants experienced the Coriolis Effect first hand and made personal clouds appear in a bottle, a visualization of what makes the wind blow. More on this story.
CCNY Hosts Northern Manhattan Photo Exhibit
City College’s Compton-Goethals Art Gallery will host “Economy,” an exhibition of 58 photographs by members of the Northern Manhattan Photography Group (NOMA Photo), Wednesday, July 8, through Wednesday, July 22. Exhibit hours are 10 a.m. – 5 p.m. Mondays through Wednesdays and 10 a.m. – 7 p.m. Thursdays. “Economy,” which explores the meaning and impact of today’s economy through abstract and literal images – many photographed in Washington Heights and Inwood – showcases the work of a dozen photographers. “Artists in Northern Manhattan are blossoming, bringing to the table a full spectrum of viewpoints: political, poignant, dispassionate, haunting, abstract, human,” said Dawn K. Chase, a NOMA Photo member who coordinated the exhibit. “The range in this exhibit is extraordinary: street photography to high-concept.” This is the second consecutive year that City College has hosted NOMA Photo’s exhibition. “Upper Manhattan does not have a great deal of large exhibit space,” Ms. Chase noted. “City College’s contribution to the photographic arts in Northern Manhattan, especially our group, is immeasurably important.”
CCNY Jewish Studies Benefactor Mickey Ross, ’39, Dies
Michael “Mickey” Ross, a City College alumnus and philanthropist who created the Michael and Irene Ross Program in Jewish Studies at City College in 2008, died May 26 in Los Angeles. He was 89. “His generosity and vision in coupling his love for his alma mater with his love for Judaism and Yiddish culture has enabled City College’s thriving Jewish Studies program, which gives students from diverse backgrounds new insights into their own experiences, to become even stronger,” said CCNY President Gregory H. Williams. Mr. Ross graduated from CCNY in 1939 and made his name in television as an Emmy Award-winning writer and producer on three of the biggest sitcoms of the 1970s. A World War II veteran, he formed a comedy partnership with CCNY classmate, Bernard West, ’39, early in their respective careers. Together, they created and produced some of the most famous shows in television, including the breakout sitcom “All in the Family,” which explored prejudice and the social mores of the 1970s, and earned Mr. Ross an Emmy for Outstanding Writing Achievement in Comedy in 1973. Other shows Mr. Ross worked on include “The Jeffersons” and “Three’s Company.”
From the President
With students and professors working on projects around the globe, summer at CCNY clearly adds up to more than beaches and barbecue – although I certainly hope everyone will take some time for a well-deserved rest.
I want to particularly welcome the newest member of our CCNY team, Director of the Office of Affirmative Action, Natalie L. Mason-Kinsey. As you can see from this newsletter, she brings a wealth of experience to the College, and I urge you all to stop by her office in the Wille Administration Building and get to know her.
I also want to add my welcome to an old friend in a new position, Acting Dean of Education Doris Cintron, and to wish our own University Distinguished Professor Jerrilyn Dodds well as she departs to become the Dean of Sarah Lawrence College.
Finally, my thanks to everyone who made Commencement run like clockwork. It was a great day - and in case you missed it, you can see it on the web at http://www.ccny.cuny.edu/commencement09/
Gregory H. Williams
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