t’s difficult to watch the documentary film, “I Learn America,” without feeling profound admiration for the five resilient high school students whose stories it tells—and without gaining a new appreciation for what it means to be an immigrant teenager in 21st century America.
“Being different is like a part-time job,” says Sandra Staniszewski, currently a BMCC multimedia arts major and one of the five students profiled in the film. “You are half yourself and half the time you try to be someone better for the people to show how you want to be. What I want to be is myself.”
Ron Wallace will be the first to tell you that he wasn’t born with a pencil in his hand.
“Growing up, I couldn’t draw much, but I was good with computer graphics programs like Adobe Illustrator and Photoshop,” he says. But by the time he was in eighth grade, he knew what he wanted to do with his life. When he enrolled in BMCC, he found teachers who were ready and willing to help him achieve his dream—to become a fashion designer.
When Chika Arita arrived in New York from Tokyo recently, among the top items on her agenda was a meeting with Professor Achraf Seyman of BMCC’s Accounting Department.
Arita is a section chief in the Administrative Evaluation Bureau of Japan’s Ministry of Internal Affairs and Communications, with responsibility for auditing the performance of government entities in terms of efficiency, effectiveness and transparency. “Our role is similar to that of the General Accounting Office in the U.S,” she explains.
Two years ago, Business Management Professor Michelle Wang came up with an innovative approach to career planning—one that would link the seemingly disparate worlds of business and Himalayan arts.
“My hope was to help business students develop a strong sense of humanity through museum visits and teaching,” she says. “In that way, they could become leaders who care about people, community, society and the world.”
Every year, the Modern Language Association (MLA), hosts a convention attended by its 30,000 members from over 100 countries.
This year, among the hundreds of presenters at the convention were BMCC English Professors David Bahr, Chamutal Noimann and Joyce Zonana.
Both Science Professor Quinn Minor and his student Macarthur Young are fascinated by the stars.
“Originally, I was into physics more than astronomy,” says Professor Minor, “and examining questions like, ‘How did the universe start?’”
Thanks to the efforts of a long list of BMCC students, staff and faculty, the Opening Ceremony to this year’s African Heritage Month took place in the first-floor lounge of BMCC’s main campus building with spectacular live music, dance and spoken word performances.
Therapy, a Caribbean band from Kaptain Productions, filled the open area with the uplifting, new world energy of reggae, soca, salsa and hip hop music.
On February 24, Ethnic Studies Professor Zetta Elliott will present a talk in the Canada Seminar at the Weatherhead Center for International Studies at Harvard University.
Thanks to the vision and generosity of the Harold and Helen Derfner Foundation and of its trustee, Jay Lieberman, BMCC will soon house a state-of-the-art Communication Center where students from every department can refine their basic speaking skills.
The Center’s development will be spearheaded by BMCC communication studies professors Lee Ritchey—who brings to the classroom, many indispensible lessons learned from voicing hundreds of commercials and appearing in over 30 feature films and television shows—and Hollis Glaser, chairperson of the Speech, Communications and Theatre Arts department.
Former BMCC adjunct professor and Pulitzer Prize-winning fiction writer Elizabeth Strout is among 16 contenders for the world’s most valuable prize for a single short story—£30,000, or about $40,500.
On his video segment “It’s a G Thing,” WPIX channel 11’s chief meteorologist Irv Gikofsky — or as he is popularly known, “Mr. G” — interviews BMCC President Antonio Pérez.
No one wants to experience a medical emergency. But if you do, this is the person you want on your side: BMCC alumnus Michael Blecker, who recently received New York State’s highest honor for paramedic, the 2013 ALS (Advanced Life Support) Provider of the Year award.
Blecker’s nomination for the prestigious award was triggered by his saving the life of a fellow paramedic, who was having a severe allergic reaction to strawberries.
BMCC will partner with the Wadhwani Foundation and 1199SEIU/United Healthcare Workers East in the launch of Race to a Job, an innovative job training initiative for healthcare workers in New York City.
Enrolled in the Medical Assistant Specialist program at BMCC’s Center for Continuing Education and Workforce Development, these workers will upgrade their skills and gain “stackable” credentials—competencies, skills and certifications they can accumulate over time to advance their careers.
“The Black Man in Contemporary Society,” a course offered through BMCC’s Center for Ethnic Studies, was taught this semester by professor and author Zetta Elliott.
“Some of you are probably surprised to come in and see me at the front of the classroom,” she tells her students on the first day of class.
Virtually every aspect of human activity from agriculture to zoning is impacted and shaped by geography. But while conventional maps depict borders, physical features and place names in precise detail, they shed little light on the way people interact in a geographic context—with the world, their environment, and each other.
Now, Geographic Information Science (GIS), a fast-growing field that marries human geography with social science, promises to revolutionize geography, with profound and far-reaching benefits.
From his home in Manhattan’s financial district, BMCC student Paul Borri couldn’t help noticing that the lights in nearby commercial buildings burned bright 24 hours a day—even when the buildings were locked, unoccupied and unused.
“This was a ridiculous waste of electricity as well as a cause of light pollution, which is harmful to people and wildlife,” he says. “So I decided to do something about it.”
Thanks to a collaborative effort between BMCC and Silverstein Properties (SPI), the Shirley Fiterman Art Center in BMCC’s new Fiterman Hall is now presenting a special exhibit, Top of the World, which documents the rebuilding of the World Trade Center site after the tragic events of September 11, 2001.
The exhibit showcases the work of SPI Lead Photographer Joe Woolhead, as well as that of over a dozen other featured artists: Michael Bowles, Michael Calcagno, Kelsy Chauvinas, Fred Conrad, Carl Glassman, Ben Jarosch, Tim Hetherington, Chris Hondros, Noel Jefferson, Erika Koop, Elinor Milchan, Spencer Platt, Vicky Roy, Tim Schenck, David Sunverg/ESTO and Nicole Tung.
“There is a large warehouse-like building in Brooklyn called ‘Industry City’, which used to be a factory but has been completely renovated,” says Queens resident Soomee Suh. “Earlier in the year, my business partner Chantha Uy and I thought, ‘This is the perfect place to launch our business.’”
And they did.
Applying for federal tuition aid is built into the registration experience at BMCC. In other words, it’s virtually impossible to skip that step of the process.
But what about smaller scholarships, ones that might be offered by a foundation or private organization, and aren’t usually based on a student’s income?
On November 13, an all-day conference, Fundraising and Philanthropy, How They Impact Education and the City of New York, was held in the Fiterman Hall Conference Center at BMCC.
Presented by BMCC and President Antonio Pérez, in collaboration with NYU’s Heyman Center for Philanthropy and Fundraising and its Executive Director Naomi Levine, the conference was hosted by BMCC VP of Development Doris Holz.