Malave Leadership Academy Students Participate at the 42nd Annual Conference of the New York State Association of Black and Puerto Rican Legislators

February 15, 2013

Students from the Malave Leadership Academy (MLA) travelled to Albany, New York in February to participate in the 42nd Annual Conference of the New York State Association of Black and Puerto Rican Legislators.

At the conference, students had the opportunity to interact with elected officials and other important community stakeholders, participating in a number of workshops covering issues confronting New York State. In a meeting with Nicole Burckard, the New York State Senate Committee Director for Higher Education, students learned about the state budget process and how the higher education budget is formulated. Nicole also discussed her own career trajectory that involved work for both political parties. Following the meeting, students participated in a tour of the capitol building and learned the history behind its recent renovations.

Another trip highlight was the annual CUNY luncheon where New York City College of Technology (NYCCT) student Patricia Persuad (a student in the Malave Leadership Academy’s CUNY Corps program) was honored for her exemplary service during Superstorm Sandy. Through MLA, Patricia participated in the CUNY HELPS initiative in Far Rockaway and collaborated with the staff of Assemblyman Felix Ortiz to canvass Red Hook residents. Continuing her work, Patricia also volunteered at an emergency evacuation shelter and helped with New York City park clean-ups. Also honored at the luncheon was former Malave participant and current CUNY Coalition for Students with Disabilities (CCSD) member Marybeth Melendez, who was lauded for her tireless work organizing a post-Sandy food distribution center on Staten Island