Noted and Quoted
New Macaulay Campus Dedicated
At the dedication of the new Upper West Side home of William E. Macaulay Honors College, Leah Golubchick was explaining her senior thesis on the significance of guardian lion statues in Hong Kong to the college’s benefactor, venture capitalist William E. Macaulay. She had traveled to China earlier in her studies and returned to Hong Kong for three weeks of research for her thesis.
“There is so little written about guardian lion statues in the research about Chinese culture, but you see them everywhere in Hong Kong,” she said in a fast-paced torrent of words. “Some are stylized, like the British lion, while others look like cute dogs.” Some people will spend 10,000 Hong Kong dollars having these dragons sculpted for their homes, she explained, yet “dismiss them as mere superstition. Clearly, they are culturally significant.” Macaulay nodded enthusiastically. He also had noticed these guardian lions when he was in Hong Kong.
Golubchick is one of dozens of Macaulay Honors College students who made presentations to Macaulay and other visitors at the festive April 17 dedication of the Honors College’s new campus, a 1904 Gothic revival building at 35 W. 67th St. in Manhattan. He gave $30 million in 2006 to acquire and transform the building, now a state-of-the-art educational facility with high-tech classrooms, a theater, a lecture hall, performance space, a dining area, student meeting rooms and administrative offices.
Chancellor Matthew Goldstein, who launched the Honors College in 2001, and Macaulay Honors College Dean Ann Kirschner, accompanied Macaulay as he walked from room to room. Said the Chancellor, “The Macaulay Honors College is a centerpiece of the University's renaissance. Having its own home will strengthen and enhance its cross-campus collaborative and interdisciplinary activities, which are key elements of its program.”
Macaulay, a 1966 Honors graduate of City College, where he majored in economics at what is now the school of business at Baruch College, said, “This is a beacon for excellence in public higher education.”
The dedication included remarks by Manu Kumasi ’09, a Macaulay and Baruch College finance major; U.S. Sen. Charles Schumer; Benno C. Schmidt, Jr, chairperson of the Board of Trustees; Deputy Mayor Carol Robles-Roman, who also serves as a Trustee and who presented a special proclamation from Mayor Michael Bloomberg, and Council-woman Gail Brewer. A proclamation from Manhattan Borough President Scott Stringer was also presented.
Applications to the Macaulay Honors College are up 20 percent this year, continuing a pattern of growth since its inception in 2001. Enrollment has grown from 208 students in the inaugural class in 2001 to 1,226 in fall, 2007. Students have received offers and fellowships to top graduate and professional schools, including Yale, Harvard, Duke, the University of California/Berkeley, Oxford and CUNY, as well as employment offers from major firms and corporations. Among the awards and honors won by Honors College students are Truman, Goldwater, Fulbright, Salk, Beinecke and NYC Urban Fellowships. Participating campuses are Baruch College, Brooklyn College, the City College, Hunter College, Lehman College, Queens College, and College of Staten Island.
Thomas Tam Professorship
The Thomas Tam Professorship in Asian-American Studies will be established in honor of the former CUNY trustee, City College alumnus and prominent Asian-American educator and community leader who passed away Feb. 27 at age 62. During a memorial service at the University's Asian American/Asian Research Institute, which Tam helped found, Chancellor Matthew Goldstein said the professorship would be developed jointly by Queens College and the CUNY Graduate School and University Center.
New CUNY Trustee
Confirmed Charles A. Shorter, executive director in the Transaction Advisory Service practice for Ernst and Young LLP, was recently confirmed by the New York State Senate as a CUNY trustee. A graduate of Princeton University (B.A.) and Columbia University (M.A.), Shorter has taught real estate market analysis as an adjunct professor over many years at Baruch College and Columbia University. Nominated by Mayor Michael Bloomberg to succeed Randy Mastro as a trustee, Shorter will serve a term ending in 2013.
At Long Last, Tenure
Forty years ago, Victoria Lichterman turned down full-time assistant professor status at Brooklyn College for a major role in a TV soap. Now she is using her extensive experience in TV, theater, film, fiction and screen writing in her current position as fulltime assistant professor of humanities at City Tech. After six years at the college, she recently got tenure—at age 68—and is delighted she's still focused on beginnings.
New Distinguished Professors
Five world-renowned scholars have been elevated to Distinguished Professors, CUNY’s highest academic rank. They are: Gail Levin of Baruch College, art history; Michael Sorkin of The City College, architecture; James Oakes of The Graduate School and University Center, history; Peter Carey of Hunter College, creative writing; Fred Gardaphé of Queens College, Italian American Studies. Levin has written or edited 18 books, including definitive studies of Edward Hopper and a current work on Judy Chicago; Sorkin has written 14 books and countless articles on urban design; Oakes has tackled important questions about early U.S. history in influential books and essays; Carey won the Booker and Common-wealth Prizes twice and holds many other distinctions; Gardaphé has expanded and redefined his field with extensive groundbreaking works.
Scholar's Books Go to CSI
Noted literary scholar Frederick Karl's collection of about 4,000 volumes have been donated to the College of Staten Island Library. Karl, who passed away in 2003, was a longtime friend and colleague of a former CSI president, the late Edmond Volpe. Karl was an expert on Joseph Conrad and also wrote and edited biographies of other literary giants including George Eliot, Franz Kafka and William Faulkner.
Helping Citizen Journalists
CUNY’s Graduate School of Journalism—in collaboration with the John S. and James L. Knight Foundation and the Knight Citizen News Network—has launched the “Top 10 Rules for Limiting Legal Risk” with advice about rights and responsibilities of online publishing. Along with in-depth content, this interactive, multimedia website also features animations, quizzes and videos. A blog for public dialogue on law-related questions and concerns will be moderated by CUNY associate professor Geanne Rosenberg, an attorney and journalist who teaches media law at CUNY's Graduate School of Journalism and Baruch College. Harvard Law School attorneys will also participate. The site was produced by Rosenberg, who also served as the principal researcher and writer, in collaboration with J-Lab: The Institute for Interactive Journalism, under a grant from the Knight Foundation.