T H E  C O L L E G E  O F  N E W  R O C H E L L E   E - N E W S L E T T E R
V O L U M E  7  -  N U M B E R  4                                                                                        J U N E  2 0 1 0


F E A T U R E  S T O R I E S

103rd Commencement Held At Radio City Music Hall

The College of New Rochelle celebrated its 103rd Commencement on May 27, 2010. The College awarded 1,204 baccalaureate and master’s degrees during Commencement exercises held at Radio City Music Hall. Honorary degrees were conferred on four distinguished recipients.


Photographed here, from left to right, are Michael N. Ambler, Esq., Chairman of the Board of Trustees; honorary degree recipients -- Commencement speaker Immaculée Ilibagiza; Maria M. Odom, Esq.; Mary Healey Sedutto, Ph.D.; A. Stanley Kosan, D.D.S.; and CNR President Stephen J. Sweeny, Ph.D.

TO WATCH VIDEO of Immaculée Ilibagiza's Commencement Address, click here.




CNR Celebrates 72nd Alumnae/i College

Graduates From the Class of ’90 (left to right) Raina van der Poel Josberger, Colleen Fitzgerald DiRago, Edwardyne Cowan Bennett, Elaine Tolley-Andrews, Regina Ambery Beechert, and Meghan Mastellon Mahon.

CNR celebrated its 72nd annual Alumnae/i College Reunion on June 12, 2010. Graduates of The College of New Rochelle returned to campus for a day of fun and remembrances. Alumnae/i from years ending in zero and five convened for a variety of activities including President Sweeny’s address to the Alumnae/i entitled, ”PUSHED AND PULLED: Being University Today.”


Following the presentation of awards and citations, President Sweeny posed with the three new Angela Merici Medal winners. They are, (left to right) Eileen Case Sibson ’60, Ann Hines Lo Voi ’55, and Virginia Hartcorn Fortney ’40.
    The Angela Merici medal, designed by art professor Ernest Thorne Thompson, Chairman of the Fine Arts Department at the College from 1929 to 1967, was instituted to mark the 50th Anniversary of the founding of the College. Since 1953, more than 100 alumnae/i have received this distinguished award. The Angela Merici Medal is conferred on outstanding alumnae/i who have demonstrated exceptional loyalty to Church and College and distinctive achievement in their careers.

Click here for List of 2010 Awardees

TO WATCH VIDEO of President Sweeny's Alumnae/i College Address, ”PUSHED AND PULLED: Being University Today,”  click here.


A L U M N A E / I  S P O T L I G H T


“At The College of New Rochelle School of New Resources, I received much more than an education, I received preparation.  CNR allowed me to prepare for my future; it cultivated within me a desire for learning that has grown stronger through the years. I left there a student and I have become a teacher. My students today at Medgar Evers College are the better for what I learned at CNR, and for what I continue to carry with me in life.” 

Damele Elliott Collier  SNR’00
Professor of English Composition
Medgar Evers College
m o r e

Alumnae/i Association  Candidates Announced
The slate of officers, directors, and nominating committee members is presented for election.  We are deeply indebted to members of the Nominating Committee for their earnest effort to formulate a slate that truly represents our alumnae/i body.  To view the candidates click here.

Your endorsement via the electronic ballot acknowledges these alumnae/i as your representatives.


A R O U N D  C N R

Strawberry Festival Welcomes Spring to Campus

The 38th annual Strawberry Festival was held on May 2, 2010, on the Main Campus. The day featured music, entertainment, crafts, games, rides, and strawberry treats. The Strawberry Festival, introduced to The College of New Rochelle in 1972, is the largest event organized entirely by the College’s undergraduates. The concept of the Strawberry Festival originated in the Midwest during the 1890s as an American festival celebrating the ripening of strawberries, the blooming of lilacs, and the coming of summer. On this sunny day during the first weekend in May, an overflowing crowd of children and adults filled Maura Lawn to enjoy this very special springtime event at CNR.


CNR Hosts Special Olympics at Wellness Center
The College of New Rochelle hosted members of the Special Olympics from Hudson Valley Public School Sports League (PSSL) on May 4, 2010. Student and faculty volunteers from CNR’s athletic department, School of Arts & Sciences, Graduate School, and the School of Nursing conducted basketball and soccer skill contests, and introduced the young athletes to new games and activities in The Wellness Center.

More than 50 PSSL students, 18 from the New Rochelle High School, participated in the afternoon of sports and games. CNR’s student-athletes also provided sports giveaways from ESPN/Disney’s “Play Your Way” program for the Special Olympics athletes.

This event was organized by Harold Crocker, director of The Wellness Center, Harold Crocker, and coach for the Special Olympics teams in lower Westchester and special education teacher at Fox Lane High School in Bedford, NY. Above right: Here one Olympian and coaches celebrate a win.


Congressman Crowley Visits Co-op City Campus

On May 4, 2010, U.S. Congressman Joseph Crowley visited the Co-op City Campus. Congressman Crowley directed a $167,000 U.S. Department of Education FIPSE grant to the campus in 2009.
    CNR utilized the federal funds to purchase instructional technology to create smart classrooms with Smart Boards and projectors, as well as laptops and desktops. Instructors and students now have better access to web-based academic resources which has enhanced the teaching and learning environment.
    The Congressman was able to see instructor Errol Bedford’s class in action using the new technology resources. With the Congressman is CNR President Stephen Sweeny, Executive Vice President Ellen Curry Damato, and Co-op City Campus Director Kristine Southard.


Social Work Graduates Share Their Experiences at Roundtable Discussion

Social Work seniors in the School of Arts & Sciences Socieal Work Department sponsored a Social Work Alumnae Fields of Practice Roundtable on May 4, 2010. Five graduates of the Social Work Program discussed their post-CNR work experiences. The purpose of the special roundtable, held in The Wellness Center, was to highlight the experiences of CNR graduates and assist students in learning about work opportunities.


Sr. Irene Kutsky: A Retrospective Honors CNR Artist and Professor

The Mooney Center Gallery on the Main Campus presented Sr. Irene Kutsky: A Retrospective from May 22, to June 17, 2010.
    Irene Kutsky dedicated her life to students, preparing many future art teachers and professional artists. She had a remarkable gift for empowering each person to articulate the beauty found in his or her own life.
    Sr. Irene graduated in 1942 from The College of New Rochelle and started teaching there in 1952. In 1957 she went to Rome for a year, returned to America briefly, then taught English in Athens, Greece until 1996 when she returned to CNR to teach ceramics until she retired in 1996.
    In her retirement years she turned her attention to Senior Citizens at the Marian Residence developing a craft class for retired Ursulines and ceramics at the Senior Center in New Rochelle. She died on February 19, 2009 and left a legacy of grateful former students who now carry on her work.
    This special retrospective of Sr. Irene Kutsky’s ceramic works was organized by Sr. Terry Eppridge, Sr. Irene Mahoney, Grace Powers Fraioli, and Katrina Rhein, Director of the Castle Gallery.


Dr. John Graham Speaks at Rosa Parks Campus

Dr. John L. Graham returned home to Harlem in April to give back to a community that has given him so much in his life. After careers that have taken him to Zimbabwe, Uganda, Lesotho, Asia, the Caribbean, Central and North America, as well as the Harvard University’s Institute for Educational Management for Higher Education Administrators, Dr. Graham spoke to the students of the School of New Resources Rosa Parks Campus on April 15, 2010.
    Born a few blocks from the Rosa Parks Campus, Dr. Graham went to the local public schools, and then the University of Maryland and Michigan State University.
    Dr. Graham spoke at the Campus at the invitation of CNR’s Senior Vice President for Academic Affairs, Dr. Dorothy Escribano, who met Dr. Graham at the Harvard University’s Institute for Educational Management for Higher Education Administrators.
    Dr. Graham is currently the Interim Dean of the School of Business at Medgar Evers College. Prior to his appointment at Medgar Evers College, he served as a Franklin Fellow at the United States Department of State.
    After his address to the students Dr. Graham is surrounded by the appreciated students and faculty.


The College Remembers Dr. Daniel Bresnahan

On May 10, 2010, The College of New Rochelle planted a tree in memory of Dr. Daniel Bresnahan, Associate Professor of Educational Leadership in the Graduate School. Dr. Bresnahan taught in the Graduate School from 1990 until his passing in 2008.  Speaking at the service, Dr. Constance Iervolino of the Graduate School said of Dr. Bresnahan, "he was a man of great faith, felt that he had a wonderful life, and saw the sunrise of each day as a gift. He left his very large footprint here at CNR, is sorely missed, and will be long remembered."
    Following readings from the scripture and reflections by President Sweeny, a white dogwood tree was planted in Dr. Bresnahan's  memory on the lawn beside Holy Family Chapel. After the blessing by Helen Wolf, Director of Campus Ministry, members of the College Community each took turns placing a shovel of dirt around the tree.



C N R  S T U D E N T  N E W S

CNR Student Profile

I chose to attend CNR because I didn’t want to be just a number in college. I wanted a school, where as the song goes, everyone knows my name.

Jessica Kottwitz SAS’12
Major: Biology
Hometown: Hunter Mountain, NY
Community College: Columbia-Greene
m o r e


SAS Athletics & Student Leaders Finish Year with Banquet

The College of New Rochelle Athletics & Student Leadership Banquet 2010 was held at Beckwith Pointe Beach Club on May 5, 2010. Posing for a team photograph here are the CNR Softball Team with Coach Skip Walsh. CNR players are (front row, left to right): Alianna Cordova SAS’10 and Gene Green SAS’12 (second row) Christina Bizzarro SAS’11; Kadie Lopez SAS’12; Kerline Dieudonne SAS’11; and Margaret McMurray SAS’13; (back row) Emily Clay SAS’11; Kira Valezquez SAS’13; Samantha Avery SAS’12; Kristina Nilaj SAS’13; Elizabeth Johnston SAS’13; and Christine Biskup SAS’13.


Freshman Johnston Selected to 2010 All-Independent Softball Teams
Elizabeth Johnston, SAS’13 was selected as a Utility Player on the First Team of the Association of Division III Independents 2010 All-Independent Softball Teams. The Association of Division III Independents consists of 14 Division III independent institutions that have joined together to recognize student-athletes at independent institutions, and to provide exempted postseason championship competition. Softball coaches at member institutions of the Association of Division III Independents selected the award recipients during a conference call. Congratulations, Elizabeth!


Natalia L. Martinez SAS'10 Makes Presentation at Research Symposium
Natalia L. Martinez SAS'10, a biology major and chemistry minor, spoke at the 58th Annual Undergraduate Research Symposium (URS) on the work that she did during her internship over the summer of 2009 at the University at Albany Cancer Research Center in Rensselaer, NY. The title of her talk was, “The Role of Vitamin D in Breast Cancer: The Effects of Radiation on Vitamin D Actions in Normal Mammary Cells.” Here Natalia proudly holds up the Undergraduate Research Symposium (URS) certificate presented to her at the Symposium.


Jessica Catherine Kottwitz SAS’12 Receives Chemistry Award

Jessica Catherine Kottwitz SAS’12 was recognized by the Westchester Chapter of the New York section of the American Chemical Society for her outstanding performance in two first-year chemistry courses taught by Dr. Elvira Longordo, Assistant Professor of Chemistry at CNR. Jessica received a certificate from the society and a copy of the 14th Edition of the Merck Index, a reference text for professionals looking for precise, comprehensive information on chemicals and drugs. She was honored at the 2010 Distinguished Scientist Award Dinner held at Pace University in Pleasantville on May 5, 2010.


Healthy Mondays Finishes Semester with Bike Rally

A Healthy Monday Bike Rally was held on May 17, 2010. The group biked to Glen Island Park and back. The event was organized by Dr. Adrienne Wald, Director of Wellness Education and Programming, and the Wellness Coaches, with support from Lauren Pellegrino, Dr. Stephen O'Rourke, and Eliot Bank. Here the group gathers outside The Wellness Center before the Rally. From left to right are: Eliot Bank, Systems Administrator; Yelitza Castanos SN’10; Sandy Thitavasanta SN’10; Yasmin Molly SN’10: Tania Veloz SAS’12; Dr. Wald; Hellen Konyango SAS’12; Sasaha Morgan SN’11; and Dr. O’Rourke, Associate Professor of Psychology.


F A C U L T Y / S T A F F  F O C U S

The College of New Rochelle has a long standing reputation for educating nurses who are academically prepared to provide care with a holistic perspective including the mind, body, and spirit, and ready to address healthcare needs of individuals, families, and groups. We are able to do so with a strong faculty who provide personal attention to each student.

Gloria Benhuri
Director of
Learning Resource Center for Nursing

School of Nursing
The College of New Rochelle
m o r e



Dr. Amy Bass, Associate Professor of History and Honors Program Director in the School of Arts & Sciences, has published the seventh book in her series with Temple University Press, “Sporting.”  The book, entitled One Less Car:  Bicycling and the Politics of Automobility, is by Zach Furness, of Columbia College in Chicago, a member of the Bad Subjects Collective.  To read more on the book and on Bass's series click here.


Kristin Berman, Associate Professor of Gifted/Special Education/Childhood Education, in the Graduate School, delivered the keynote “Becoming Global Citizens in the Twenty-first Century”  at the First Annual Educators’ Conference of Kuwait in Kuwait City in January 2010.  She also gave a number of workshops:  “Developing the Young Scientist;”  “English Language Learners: Embodying Language Learning as a Holistic Experience;” and “Project Based Learning in Early Childhood.”  Earlier in January she traveled to the American International School in Tegucigalpa, Honduras to present training workshops for teachers in effective teaching strategies. In March 2010, Kristin presented at the Association for the Education of Gifted, Underachieving Students (AEGUS) at their annual conference in Rockville, Maryland. In “Developing Capacities of Imagination,” she conveyed concepts acquired from her involvement in the partnership between The College of New Rochelle and Lincoln Center Institute’s Aesthetic Education program, for which she has become a Faculty Facilitator for the College.  


Andrea DeCapua, Assistant Professor of Multilingual Multicultural Education in the Graduate School, in May 2010 presented a paper on “Intercultural Awareness and ESL/EFL Teachers” at the 6th annual ELT (English Language Teaching Conference) in Selcuk, Turkey.  Subsequently, she presented at Anadolu University in Eskeshir, Turkey on “Preparing ESL/EFL Teachers to Become Culturally Aware: Techniques, Activities and New Understandings.” 


Dr. Kenneth J. Doka, Professor of Gerontology in the Graduate School, presented a series of lectures on End of Life Care in the month of May. On May 8, he attended and spoke at the International Work Group conference on Death, Dying, and Bereavement in Cologne, Germany. On May 21, he was at the Florence Wald Conference in Connecticut. The following day, he gave a lecture on gender styles in grief in Appleton, Wisconsin. On May 29 and 31, Dr. Doka lectured on Death Education at the University of Taipei in Taiwan.


Judy Gordon, Associate Professor of Social Work in the School of Arts and Sciences, was a participant in a week-long seminar, “Responding to Women's Issues Through Service Learning,” sponsored by NYU's Faculty Resource Network June 7-11, 2010.


Daniel McCarthy, Associate Professor in the School of Arts and Sciences, led a series of four discussions on books about the American Founding for the Reading Between the Lines Program of the New York State Council on the Humanities. The discussions took place at the Bronxville Public Library from March through June 2010.


Mary McGuinness, Assistant Dean in the School of Nursing, and Roblyn Rawlins, Associate Professor of Sociology in the School of Arts and Sciences, participated in the Colloquy on Faith and Intellectual Life held at the University of  Portland, OR, on June 4-11, 2010. The conference was sponsored by Collegium, a national organization of Catholic colleges and universities that  fosters discussion about the Catholic mission on college campuses.


Dr. Roblyn Rawlins, Associate Professor of Sociology in the School of Arts & Sciences, has been invited to serve as a Faculty Resource Network Scholar-in-Residence at New York University for the Fall semester 2010. The Scholar-in-Residence program enables several faculty members from Network schools to work at New York University for an academic term, conducting research and consulting with NYU colleagues. Selection for participation in the program is highly competitive.  Dr. Rawlins received the appointment to initiate a multi-year, multi-method research study entitled “Shop, Cook, Eat: Food, Identity, and Consumption in Contemporary America.”


Dr. Nereida Segura-Rico, Associate Professor of Spanish, and Chair of CNR’s Department of Modern & Classical Languages in the School of Arts & Sciences, was invited by the Humanities Center at Lehigh University to introduce Dominican author, Loida Maritza's Pérez, who spoke on  “From the Americas to America: Identity as Construct."  The talk, given on March 18, 2010, was part of Lehigh’s Humanities Center series “Speaking Bodies.” She also moderated a discussion with Ms. Pérez about her book, Geographies of Home.


Dr. Jennifer Scuro, Assistant Professor of Philosophy and Director of the Women’s Studies Program in the School of Arts & Sciences, hosted a Skype video-conferencing class on May 10, 2010  with her Philosophy and Gender students. The guest lecturer was Dr. Devonya Havis, Assistant Professor of Philosophy at Canisius College, specializing in Philosophy of Race and African American Philosophy.  Dr. Havis discussed Audre Lorde’s, “Uses of the Erotic: The Erotic as Power” in Sister Outsider (Crossing Press, 1984), questioning the social and cultural loss of passion and celebration in everyday life.


Geraldine Valencia-Go, Associate Professor in the School of Nursing, served as faculty advisor to the Students Nurses' Association and accompanied the executive board members and other student delegates to the National Student Nurses' Association Convention in Orlando, FL. The group presented for the first time a resolution that was approved by the House of Delegates. Dr. Go provided guidance and editorial support in preparing the materials and worked with students in their fundraising and community projects.


Elizabeth Wisniewski, Instructor of Mathematics in the School of Arts and Sciences, this last semester provided mathematics support for secondary integrated algebra and special education instructors at Roosevelt High School in Yonkers, NY. This was sponsored by the Hudson Valley Regional Support Center as part of the New York Higher Education Task Force on Inclusive Schooling.


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