CSI Scholars Honored by CUNY

December 7, 2007 | College of Staten Island

Eighteen faculty members from the College of Staten Island (CSI) are among The City University of New York’s Salute to Scholars celebration honoring faculty members who won prestigious national awards or outstanding national recognition for their research, artistic endeavors, and other accomplishments.

“Our honorees represent the rich mosaic of faculty expertise and research interests that help make CSI a great College in an extraordinary University,” says Tomás Morales, President of CSI. “Whether the research involves gender and warfare in Italian Renaissance writing, drifter motion planning for optimal surveillance of the ocean, or Staten Island’s response to the World Trade Center disaster, the scholarly pursuits of CSI faculty not only contribute to the intellectual capital of the world, but transform the lives of our students.”

“These scholars are among the core of the University’s educational community,” says Selma Botman, Executive Vice Chancellor for Academic Affairs and University Provost. “Their unique and varied contributions have made CUNY “the nation’s largest public university” into a model of urban public education. Their research vitally transforms our local and our global communities, and their teaching inspires the minds and enriches the lives of our diverse and multi-talented students.”

In addition to the 18 honorees, CSI faculty members are prominently featured in the event’s program, including the cover photography of two out-of-this-world scientists: Irving K. Robbins, director of the College’s Astrophysical Observatory and Associate Professor of Physics and Astronomy; and Charles Liu, Assistant Professor of Astronomy and Professor of Astrophysics. Liu is also on staff at the American Museum of Natural History, and is among a select group of international experts studying data collected by NASA’s Hubble Space Telescope.

Dr. Naider, a CUNY Distinguished Professor of Chemistry and Biochemistry, and the Leonard and Esther Kurtz Term Professor at CSI, was featured for his research in making strides toward a new anti-HIV drug with a novel chemical approach employed by CSI undergraduate Svetlana Rabinovich. Naider is one in a handful of scientists who has had continual funding from the National Institutes of Health (NIH) for over 30 years.

Dr. Jane Coffee, director of the CUNY Teacher Academy at CSI, was noted for having built relationships with four host schools on Staten Island, including two whose leadership includes CSI graduates: Richard Gallo, Principal of IS 61, William Morris Intermediate School, and math teacher Debra Lauro; and John Crowdell, Assistant Principal at Curtis High School where he oversees math. The two other host schools are New Dorp High School and the CSI High School for International Studies.

The host schools benefit not only from students as classroom assistants but also from the professional knowledge that College faculty can provide, Dr. Coffee explained.

“I’m really happy that there is a professional relationship between the University faculty and the Department of Education faculty,” she says. “If we are going to improve how students perform in college and when they become teachers, they’ve got to have a solid foundation at the middle school and high school levels. That’s where change has to happen.”

The Salute to Scholars faculty recognition celebration was held December 5, 2007 at 6:00pm at the New York Public Library.

THE CITY UNIVERSITY OF NEW YORK’S SAULTE TO SCHOLARS
COLLEGE OF STATEN ISLAND FACULTY HONOREES 2007

Brian Carolan
Assistant Professor, Department of Education
American Educational Research Association; Student
Engagement in Small Schools: The Effects on
Academic Achievement, Research Grant, 2006-2007

Abdeslem El Idrissi
Associate Professor, Department of Biology/PhD
Program in Biology, College of Staten Island/The
Graduate Center
FRAXA Research Foundation; The Neurobiology of
Fragile X Syndrome: A Unifying Neuro-Endocrine
Hypothesis, Research Grant, 2007-2008

Qiao-Sheng Hu
Associate Professor, Department of Chemistry/PhD
Program in Chemistry, College of Staten Island/The
Graduate Center
American Chemical Society; Controlled Pd(0)
Catalyzed Cross-Coupling Polymerizations, Research
Grant, 2006-2008

Shi Jin
Assistant Professor, Department of Chemistry/PhD
Program in Chemistry, College of Staten Island/The
Graduate Center
3M Community Affairs; Nanostructured Organic
Optoelectric Materials, Research Grant, 2007-2008

James Kaser
Associate Professor, Library
New York State Archives; Phase II Documentation:
Staten Island’s Response to the World Trade Center
Disaster, Grant, 2006-2007

Athanasios Koutavas
Assistant Professor, Department of Engineering Science
& Physics/PhD Program in Earth and Environmental
Sciences, College of Staten Island/The Graduate Center
National Science Foundation/Columbia University;
Tracking Past Shifts on the Eastern Pacific ITCZ with
Oxygen Isotopes and Magnesium Paleothermometry,
Research Grant, 2007

David Kritt
Associate Professor, Department of Education
The City University of New York/Hunter College;
Collaborative Grant: Early Childhood Environments
Research Consortium, Research Grant, 2006-2007

Lihong (Connie) Li
Assistant Professor, Department of Engineering Science
& Physics/PhD Program in Physics
College of Staten Island/The Graduate Center
Pearl River Computers; Automatic Image
Segmentation and Feature Analysis Technique Based
on the EM Algorithm, Research Grant, 2007

Charles Liu
Assistant Professor, Department of Engineering Science
and Physics
National Science Foundation; Earth and Planetary
Science and Astrophysics REU at the AMNH with CUNY,
Research Grant, 2007-2008

Gerry Milligan
Assistant Professor, Department of Modern Languages
Villa I Tatti/Harvard University Center for Italian
Renaissance Studies; Gender and Warfare in Italian
Renaissance Writing, Fellowship, 2007-2008

Shaibal Mitra
Assistant Professor, Department of Biology/PhD
Program in Biology, College of Staten Island/The
Graduate Center
National Science Foundation/Science Education for
New Civic Engagements and Responsibilities (SENCER);
Applying Active Learning and Civic Engagement to a
Multi-Sectioned College Science Course, Grant,
2006-2008

Fred Naider
Distinguished Professor, Department of
Chemistry/PhD Program in Chemistry
College of Staten Island/The Graduate Center
National Science Foundation; The Role of
Oligopeptide Transporters in Germinating Rice
Seeds, Research Grant, 2007-2008
United States/Israel Bi-National Science Foundation;
NMR Study of HIV-1 Glycoprotein Interaction With
CCR5, Research Grant, 2006-2007

Andrew Poje
Associate Professor, Department of
Mathematics/Honors College/PhD Program in
Mathematics, College of Staten Island/The Graduate
Center
Office of Naval Research; Drifter Motion Planning for
Optimal Surveillance of the Ocean, Research Grant,
2007-2010

Christina Tortora
Assistant Professor, Department of English, Speech, and
World Literature/PhD in English
College of Staten Island/The Graduate Center
National Science Foundation; Collaborative
Research: The Comparative Morpho-Syntax of
Appalachian English, Research Grant, 2006-2008

Richard Veit
Professor, Department of Biology/PhD Program in
Biology, College of Staten Island/The Graduate Center
Nuttall Ornithological Club; Year-Round Tracking of
Common Terns Using Geolocators, Research Grant,
2006-2007

Jesenko Vukadinovic
Assistant Professor, Department of Mathematics
National Science Foundation; Asymptotic Study of a
Smoluchowski Equation Arising in Modeling of
Nematic Polymers, Research Grant, 2006-2008

Nan-Loh Yang
Professor, Department of Chemistry/PhD Program in
Chemistry, College of Staten Island/The Graduate
Center
New York Office of Science, Technology and Academic
Research (NYSTAR); Center for Engineered Polymeric
Materials (CART), Year 3, Research Grant, 2006-2007

Alexandre Zaitsev
Associate Professor, Department of Engineering and
Physics/PhD Programs in Engineering and Physics
College of Staten Island/The Graduate Center
Department of the Army/Army Research Office; Ion
Beam Written Carbon Nanostructures on
Carbonaceous Substances, Research Grant,
2006-2008

COLLEGE OF STATEN ISLAND Faculty Honorees 2006

Probal Banerjee
Professor, Department of Chemistry
National Institutes of Health; The 5HT1A Receptor and
Brain Development: Development of a Biomarker for
Glatiramer Acetate Samples

Robert Buranello
Assistant Professor, Department of Modern Languages
The Gladys Krieble Delmas Foundation; Venetian
Research

Frank Burbrink
Assistant Professor, Department Biology
Reassessment of Species Boundaries in the Endemic
Arkansas Salamanders of the Plethodon Ouachitae
Complex Using Molecular Arkansas Game and Fish
Commission: Phylogeographic Techniques

Shi Jin
Assistant Professor, Department of Chemistry
Kent Optronics; Strong Anchoring Polymide Alignment
Materials for Fast Switching Liquid Crystal Displays

James Kaser
Associate Professor, Library
New York State Department of Education; Staten
Island’s Response to the World Trade Center Disaster

Maria Knikou
Associate Professor, Department of Biology
New York Department of Health/Spinal Cord Injury
Research Board; Sensorimotor Control of Spinal
Locomotor Centers in Human Spinal Cord Injuries

Ilya Kofman
Assistant Professor, Department of Mathematics
National Science Foundation/Barnard College;
Hyperbolic Geometry and Jones Polynomials

Anatoly Kuklov
Professor, Department of English/Department of Physics
National Science Foundation; Worm Algorithm and
Diagrammatic Monte Carlo for Strongly Correlated and
Condenses Matter

Carlo Lancellotti
Assistant Professor, Department of Mathematics
National Science Foundation; Mathematical Methods in
the Kenetic Theory of Plasmas and Gravitating Systems

Ralf Peetz
Assistant Professor, Department of Chemistry
Pall Corporation; Novel Multicomponent BIomembranes
for Size-Selective Protein Filtration

Krishnaswami Raja
Assistant Professor, Department of Chemistry
Dynavax Technologies; DNA-Acrylate Block Co-polymer
Nanoparticle Vaccine Adjuvants

Ruth Stark
Professor, Department of Chemistry
Dormitory Authority of the State of New York; Research
Support for CUNY’s Macromolecular Assemblies Institute

Richard Veit
Professor, Department of Biology
Nuttall Ornithological Club; Dispersal and Population
Dynamics of the New England American Oystercatcher

William Wallace
Associate Professor, Department of Biology
New York Sea Grant; The Importance of Metal Storage in
Prey and Digestion in Predators to Metal Tropic Transfer
in Estuarine Food Chain

Shuniqin Zhou
Associate Professor, Department of Chemistry
Degussa Borportation; Laser Light Scattering Studies of
Pigment Particles in Solutions