The Office of Alumni Relations at Eugenio María de Hostos Community College will hold its Fourth Annual Alumni Homecoming Celebration on Sunday, October 3, 2010 from 11:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m.
“We are looking forward to welcoming our alumni, faculty, staff, students and their families and friends to our 2010 homecoming,” said Nydia Edgecombe, Director of the college’s Alumni Relations Office. “We hope to have record attendance on this day of reconnection, recreation and inspiration at Hostos.”
The homecoming will include a BBQ luncheon, kids’ activities, dance classes, a talent show, a gallery exhibition and talk, and musical performances, as well as a Homecoming Day Parade led by President Félix V. Matos Rodríguez.
The Homecoming Celebration Planning Committee selected the following individuals as Grand Marshals for the parade; Hostos alumni Ponce Laspina and Fenix Arias; Professor Sandy Figueroa; staff member Susie Cruz; and Hostos Foundation board member and community leader Elba Cabrera. They will be marching with President Félix V. Matos Rodríguez, Dr. Carmen Corballes-Vega, the college’s recently appointed Provost and Vice President for Academic Affairs, and other members of the President’s cabinet.
This year, the reunion will include a Domino Tournament in partnership with the World’s Domino Congress. This event will be from 10:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m., and the suggested donation per player is $30, which include lunch. Proceeds from the tournament will be contributed to the Circle of 100 Emergency and Scholarship Fund.
In keeping with tradition, the alumni reunion will coincide with the ¡Viva Bronx! Festival, a street festival celebrating the South Bronx and its role as a gateway to America for generations of immigrants. Main features of this festival will include multicultural musical and dance performances, vendors, stilt walkers, clowns, children’s rides, and performing artists.
Hostos homecoming and ¡Viva Bronx! activities will take place between 144th and 149th streets on the Grand Concourse, which will be closed to vehicular traffic.
Fernando “Ponce” Laspina, a former South Bronx gang leader, succumbed to the pressure of the street, but opened his eyes and turned his life around. This former high school dropout went back to school, earning his GED and Associate Degree in Arts from Eugenio María de Hostos Community College, a Bachelors of Arts from Lehman College and a Masters in Arts and Science from Buffalo State University. Ponce has served his community as a youth counselor and program coordinator. From 1987 to 1997, he was an Adjunct Lecturer of Latin American and Caribbean Studies at Eugenio María de Hostos Community College taking pride in providing youth insight into their history, heritage, culture and roots so that they may define their future. Ponce has successfully provided his community’s youth with a positive alternative that allows them to channel their energy into constructive and competitive sports and avoid the often negatively enticing call of the streets. Ponce is the Administrative Director of the Butler Community Center where he administers enrollment for Summer Youth Camp, the After-School Center and Sports. In 2003 he founded El Maestro, Inc., and the Juan Laporte’s Boxing Gym; currently, he is the Executive Director of these organizations.
Fenix Nikaurys Arias came to the United States from the Dominican Republic in 1993, after completing her high school diploma. Currently, she is a doctoral candidate in Urban Education at the CUNY Graduate Center. She is also the Director of Instructional Testing at York College/CUNY, and teaches at John Jay Criminal Justice and York College. Her dissertation focuses on the children of Dominican deportees, left behind in the United States, and their psychosocial integration to mainstream society. She holds a Master degree from the School of Public Affairs at Baruch College/CUNY, a Sociology Baccalaureate degree from Columbia University, and an Associates degree from Hostos Community College-CUNY. Her research interests are social policy, social justice, and advocacy for minority’s rights.
Susy Cruz was born in Humacao, Puerto Rico. She came to NY where she has dedicated herself to take care of her son Joshua. She enrolled at Hostos in 1976 and after graduating transferred to Mercy College from where she earned a Bachelor’s degree and a Master’s degree in Organizational Leadership. She began to work at Hostos in the Admissions Office as a college assistant in 1982. Ms. Cruz has dedicated more than 30 years of her life to the New York diverse communities.
Elba Cabrera was born in Ponce, Puerto Rico. Her family moved to New York during the Great Depression settling in El Barrio and years later moving to The Bronx. Elba considers herself Puerto Rican and a Bronxite being very proud of both. After working for over four decades with non-profit organizations, she retired from the Girl Scouts of the USA after 10 years of employment with them. It was during this time that Elba had an opportunity to travel all over the United States of America; at least “80 percent of this country’s territory,” she often says. Presently, she is employed part-time by the NYC Department for the Aging.
Elba has been an active member of the Hostos Community College Foundation for the past 10 years. Her great love and commitment to Hostos and its students is a priority in her life.
Elba Cabrera is a graduate of SUNY at Old Westbury holding a BA in Politics, Economics and Societies.
Communications & College Relations Manager
Division of Institutional Development
Eugenio María de Hostos Community College
of The City University of New York
120 East 149th Street, Rm. 214 E Bronx, NY 10451
Tel. (718) 518-4355
Fax #: (718) 518-4240