Tributes Made to Those Who Have Inspired the Success of Students Past, Present and Future at Queensborough’s Partners for Progress Gala 2014

April 28, 2014 | Queensborough Community College

The Edge for Success Fundraising Campaign has reached its goal of $25 million by 2015

Lida Ramos Arce, who will graduate this spring with an Associate degree in Business Administration, opened the Gala evening by noting, “The most valuable, lasting impressions of my education here at Queensborough are the amazing experiences I’ve had.” Lida began by describing her leadership roles as Executive Vice President of the Student Government Association and Delegate for the CUNY Student Senate. Afterwards, she reflected on her interviews with Holocaust survivors as an intern in the Kupferberg Holocaust Resource Center and Archives’ student internship program. She closed out her speech by sharing memories of her recent trip to Austria as part of the Salzburg Global Seminar. Lida will transfer in the fall to Baruch College where she will continue her studies in economics.

Lida’s remarks were among many shared by students at Queensborough’s Partners for Progress Gala 2014, held on April 24 at Terrace-on-the Park in Flushing Meadows Park, Queens. Over 350 guests convened for the event, including corporate, community and business leaders, alumni, faculty, staff, students, retirees, friends and elected officials.

“Your partnership with Queensborough enhances our commitment to our many students like Lida and helps our outstanding faculty to conduct research, develop new teaching techniques and to stay abreast of the emerging trends in their fields,” said Dr. Diane B. Call, President. “Your investment goes a long way in making the difference between providing the basics and providing the best.”

Recognizing the lasting connections that the college maintains with its outstanding alumni and devoted faculty members, Queensborough celebrated the commitment and generosity of its selected Honoree and of its distinguished donors.

Alumni Partner of the Year

Barry L. Pulchin, Class of 1966, is a Member and Director of Forensic Accounting and Valuation Services of Prager Metis CPAs, LLC, with offices in New York, Nassau County, Westchester County, New Jersey, Los Angeles and London. His firm specializes in investigative and forensic accounting and business valuations on a wide range of issues including minority shareholder disputes, estate and gift taxes, insurance loss, bankruptcy and tax fraud. In March 2013, he was appointed Chartered Global Management Accountant.

Under the auspices of Continuing Professional Education, Mr. Pulchin has lectured to other Certified Public Accountants for the Foundation of Accounting Education, the Nassau County Bar Association, the Suffolk County Bar Association, the Nassau County Academy of Law and the Association of Certified Fraud Examiners. Mr. Pulchin spoke highly of his ongoing connection to Queensborough, noting, “The approachability of professors and the camaraderie of the college community in general will always mean a great deal to me.” Mr. Pulchin, who graduated Queensborough with an Associate degree in Applied Science, went on to Baruch College where he obtained a Bachelor of Business Administration Degree in Public Accounting. Currently, he is a member of Queensborough’s Alumni Association Cabinet, seeking funding for student scholarships and the Kupferberg Holocaust Resource Center and Archives.

Dr. Amy Wong (梅),Gift in Memory of her Late Husband Dr. Pak Kuen Wong, (黃伯權) (January 10, 1935-January 9, 2014)

Inspired to help support scientific research and resources for students in the Science Technologies, Engineering & Mathematics (STEM) Academy, Dr. Amy Wong has awarded a $250,000 gift to the Queensborough Community College Fund, Inc. in memory of her late husband, Dr. Pak Kuen Wong, who was a Professor in the Department of Chemistry at the college for more than 30 years, three of which he served as Chair.

Dr. Wong was born in 1935 in the city of Zhongshan, China and as a young man attended Kings High School in Hong Kong where he discovered his passion for chemistry. He traveled to Australia to continue his studies in the sciences and obtained his Bachelor’s in Science degree from New South Wales University of Technology, in 1962. And it was in Australia where he met his wife, Amy, who at the time was enrolled at the University of Sydney. In the early 70s, Dr. Wong applied for a post-doctoral residency scholarship at Brookhaven National Research Laboratory.

There, as a Research Associate, he co-published six scientific papers on physical chemistry.

During this period, he was appointed assistant professor in the Department of Chemistry at Queensborough. His vision was to introduce new technology, promote undergraduate research and open doors for aspiring women instructors in the department.

In 1975 Dr. Wong was awarded tenure, and the following year he was promoted to Associate Professor. He was awarded full professorship in 1993, and in 1998 was elected Chair of the Department. He later stepped down due to health issues, becoming Professor Emeritus in 2005.

The Jackson and Muriel Lum Endowment Fund

Mr. Jackson Lum (林積順) and his wife, Muriel Lum (趙妙霞) have donated more than $100,000 to establish the Jackson and Muriel Lum Endowment Fund at Queensborough. The main purpose of the endowment is to generate annual funds to provide scholarships and awards to outstanding students in the Electrical and Computer Engineering Technology program.

An additional contribution of $20,000 was made in his father’s name to establish the Harry Lum Memorial Endowment Fund. Harry Lum had worked in the cafeteria at Queensborough Community College.

A former faculty member in the Engineering and Technology Department, Mr. Lum and his wife, Muriel Lum, founded Logic Controls in 1982 and worked together to build the company. Logic Controls was a leading provider of Point of Sale (POS) system software products and PC-based peripherals. Mr. Lum holds 44 patents in display systems and products. Together, they sold the Long Island-based company to Bematech in 2008.

Beginning as an instructor in 1970, Mr. Lum was appointed Assistant Professor in 1971 and, in 1976, earned tenure and was promoted to associate professor. He was promoted to full professor in 1983, and in 1991 he was designated Professor Emeritus.

Mr. Lum holds a Bachelor of Science degree in Electrical Engineering from Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute in Troy, New York and a Master’s degree in Electrical Engineering from Polytechnic Institute in Brooklyn.  He is also licensed as a Professional Engineer.

F&T Group Endowed Scholarship at Queensborough Community College

The F&T Group, represented by Ms. Helen Lee (李海倫) Executive Vice President, has donated $30,000 for a scholarship endowment to Queensborough Community College. The funds will be used for the purpose of awarding merit scholarships to ambitious, hardworking students from Queens.  In order to be eligible for the scholarships, students must reside in Queens County and be college ready. F&T Group, headquartered in Flushing, Queens, is a global development company. The company integrates real estate service companies to effectively handle acquisition, planning, design, development, construction and management of mixed-use projects in China and New York City.

Other distinguished guests included Allan Dobrin, Vice Chancellor of The City University of New York (CUNY) and Mrs. Lynda Dobrin, Rita Di Martino, a member of The Board of Trustees, CUNY and Muhammad Arshad, the student member of The Board of Trustees, CUNY. Others present were Mr. Marc Shaw, Senior Advisor to the Chancellor for Fiscal Policy and his wife, Mary Jane; and Interim President Dr. Evangelos Gizis of Queens College.

Special recognition was also given to current and former elected officials, including Borough President Melinda Katz who gave greetings; New York State Assembly Members, David Weprin, Nily Rozic and Edward Braunstein who presented proclamations to the Honoree and Distinguished Donors; and The Honorable Frank Padavan.

This year’s Gala was chaired by Patricia Tiffany, Senior Vice President–Marketing Director, Flushing Bank and member of the Board of Directors of the QCC Fund, Inc.

Since its official launch five years ago, Queensborough’s Edge for Success Fundraising Campaign has enabled hundreds of deserving students to continue their education, achieve their academic goals and pursue their dreams. Moreover, it has helped support the development of student-centered events and activities.

Donor contributions support student scholarships and enhance the student learning experience at Queensborough through faculty development, the Harriet and Kenneth Kupferberg Holocaust Resource Center and Archives (KHRCA), the QCC Art Gallery and Queensborough’s Performing Arts Center (QPAC).

The Partners for Progress Gala is hosted by The Queensborough Community College Fund, Inc.

Queensborough, established in 1959, is located on a lush 37-acre campus in Bayside, New York. The College offers a rich liberal arts and science curriculum as well as career and pre-professional courses. Comprising one of the most diverse populations of any college in the U.S., over 16,000 students pursue Associate degrees or Certificate programs and another 10,000 students of all ages attend continuing education programs.

The College has several Dual/Joint Degree programs with its sister CUNY institutions: Nursing with Hunter College and York College; Biotechnology and Pharmaceutical Sciences with York College; Criminal Justice and Forensic Accounting with John Jay College of Criminal Justice; and Education with Queens College.

Over half of the faculty holds doctorates, compared with 21% of faculty in other community colleges nationwide. Queensborough has the distinction of being awarded a National Endowment for the Humanities (NEH) Challenge Grant in the amount of $500,000 and was recently named one of 12 colleges nationwide to lead the American Association of Colleges & Universities (AAC&U) project—funded by Met Life—to support and expand effective student success strategies at community colleges.

The College’s cultural beacons,The Kupferberg Holocaust Resource Center and Archives;QCC Art Gallery; and The Queensborough Performing Arts Center (QPAC) continue to bring world-class exhibits, fine art and performances to the entire community and beyond.  Other campus highlights include Queensborough’s Observatory, the largest in a college in Queens, which is open to students, faculty, staff and the community.