Podcasts

LaGuardia Community College

Les Payne: Journalism’s Role in Democracy

June 12, 2012 | CUNY Lecture Series, Issues in Journalism, LaGuardia Community College

In the early 1970s, as the number of heroin addicts in New York City started to explode, the Long Island newspaper Newsday sent a team of investigative reporters to find the source of the scourge. “That’s how journalism works,” says Les Payne, about his work on “The Heroin Trail,” the Pulitzer Prize-winning series that uncovered an international ring of heroin smugglers. You find a problem, see no quick answers, so you begin to investigate, says Payne, who wrote a column for Newsday until retiring in 2008. Payne spoke with students at LaGuardia Community College about the invaluable role that investigative reporting plays in a healthy democracy.

Time to Treat the Animals We Eat With Respect

August 1, 2011 | CUNY Lecture Series, LaGuardia Community College

Humane treatment of animals, including those raised solely for slaughter, has been the lifelong pursuit of Temple Grandin, a professor of animal science at Colorado State University. Speaking with students at LaGuardia Community College about animal welfare issues, Grandin recalled standing on a catwalk in the middle of a stockyard 20 years ago and thinking, “We brought these cattle to life, we should at least treat them right.” Her life and her work designing livestock handling facilities became the subject of the HBO movie “Temple Grandin,” winner of five Emmy awards in 2010. Grandin, who is autistic, has also been a longtime advocate for people with autism.
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The Journalistic Ethic

April 12, 2010 | CUNY Lecture Series, LaGuardia Community College

As a Daily News columnist, Errol Louis is used to ruffling feathers, but his job also comes with the obligation to tell the truth. “There are lobbyists with financial interests out there spinning stories, calling reporters day after day, and feeding them information,” said Louis during a panel discussion of blacks in the media, at LaGuardia Community College. “If you check it out, and the information is true, it’s fine, but if based on stuff you didn’t bother to check, you shouldn’t put it in the paper.” Louis, who also hosts the Morning Show for AM 1600 radio, was joined by NY1 Queens reporter Ruschell Boone and weekend evening anchor Cheryl Wills, to discuss their individual career paths and the responsibilities that come with them. “Whether or not the issues are pretty, it’s our job to bring them to the forefront,” said Boone.
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Purr-fect Jobs for Animal Lovers

February 8, 2010 | LaGuardia Community College, Newsmakers

Veterinary work isn’t just playing with puppies, says Dr. Robin Sturtz, director of the Veterinary Technology Program at LaGuardia Community College. In fact, she says, veterinary technology, similar to nursing for humans, is not only scientific but considered by the U.S. Labor Department as one of the top “recession-proof professions” able to withstand economic declines. “We have jobs for every one of our students when they graduate, and most of them get more than one offer,” said Sturtz. A veterinarian, Sturtz said the program — the city’s only fully accredited veterinary technology program — is competitive: Only 48 out of 120 students are accepted into the second, clinical phase. “Sometimes people think that we play with puppies, which we do,” she said, “but this is a science that has as many technologies and advances as in human medicine.”
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LaGuardia and Goldman Sachs Partnership for Small Business

February 2, 2010 | LaGuardia Community College, Newsmakers

Since opening in October 2001 to assist businesses affected by 9/11, the Small Business Development Center at LaGuardia Community College has counseled more than 8,000 business owners, helping many to access capital and create jobs. Now, recognizing that community colleges are engines that drive economic development, Goldman Sachs has announced that LaGuardia will be its first partner in a $500 million initiative with small businesses across the country. “Small businesses are key to growing the economy,” said Jane Schulman, vice president of the Division of Adult and Continuing Education at LaGuardia, which oversees the center. “This initiative will help small business owners navigate the system of marketing and the system of business plans and help to grow their businesses.”
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Memoir of a Dictatorship

June 24, 2009 | CUNY Lecture Series, LaGuardia Community College

Under Chilean dictator Augusto Pinochet more than 3,200 were murdered, more than 30,000 tortured, and hundreds of thousands forced into hiding. One victim was Heraldo Muñoz, whose political memoir “The Dictator’s Shadow: Life Under Augusto Pinochet,” was named one of the best books of 2008 by the Washington Post. Pinochet’s regime “imposed a systematic and brutal repression of the Chilean people,” Muñoz, now Chile’s permanent ambassador to the U.N., said at LaGuardia Community College. “At the time, we only thought of hiding and surviving.” As a Socialist party member, Muñoz was trained as a paramilitary explosive expert and later worked with the social democratic Party for Democracy, which ousted Pinochet in 1990.
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The Importance of Community Colleges

February 11, 2009 | LaGuardia Community College, Newsmakers

A fierce advocate for community college education in America, Dr. Gail Mellow, president of LaGuardia Community College, is taking her message abroad. In December she traveled to Chile to help create a pilot community college with the Universidad Central in Santiago, that will assist lower income students when it opens in March 2010. “We’re helping to start a movement in Chile that will promote democratic impulses in that country,” said Dr. Mellow. She also discusses the record enrollments at community colleges across this country, and why it is imperative to invest in community colleges to meet the increased demand. “Without the American community college, there wouldn’t be a middle class,” she says.
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The Faces of Antarctica in Black and White

January 14, 2009 | LaGuardia Community College, Newsmakers

When it comes to portrait photography, Scott Sternbach, director of the Commercial Photography Program at LaGuardia Community College, insists his 8×10 inch Wisner camera, is without equal. In late 2008, Prof. Sternbach and his bulky Wisner spent about 10 weeks shooting scientists and support staff at the Palmer Research Station in Antarctica. The results from the large-format camera, a throwback in both size and design to cameras used 100 years ago, were images that captured individuals in candid, relaxed and natural poses. “I tried to create a window on these people and show them as they are,” said Sternbach, whose project, “Antarctica in Black and White,” was funded by a grant from the National Science Foundation.

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The Year of "City Life"

November 10, 2008 | LaGuardia Community College, Newsmakers

A quotidian celebration of life in the city, the “City Life” calendar and companion website, www.cunyedu/citylife, is the newest calendar from a unique partnership between the LaGuardia and Wagner Archives at LaGuardia Community College and The New York Times Photo Archives. The calendar explores the distinctive housing, parks and neighborhoods of major American cities. “We’re trying to bring history to life,” said Steven Levine, who headed the research team at the LaGuardia and Wagner Archives. Under the auspices of the CUNY/New York Times Knowledge Network, the archive has also released “Nation of Immigrants,” a special curriculum for high school and college students.
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Earl Caldwell: Eyewitness to History

May 9, 2008 | CUNY Lecture Series, LaGuardia Community College

As a national reporter covering the struggle for civil rights for The New York Times, Earl Caldwell was the lone journalist present at the assassination of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. on April 4, 1968. He also believes that the official story of King’s murder is a “lie.” “In Memphis, there was no investigation,” said Caldwell, who was staying down the hall from King, in room 214 of the Lorraine Motel. “My room faced the crime scene. Nobody ever came to me asking, ‘Where were you standing and what did you see?’ ” Speaking at LaGuardia Community College’s Black Literature Series, Caldwell, a former columnist for the New York Daily News, reflects on that day and other momentous events he witnessed and chronicled in his more than 40-year career.
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