Weekly Message from Dr. Belinda S. Miles – November 18, 2016
Tonight I have the great pleasure of breaking bread at the Interfaith Shabbat Dinner sponsored by the Office of Student Involvement and Hillels of Westchester. The dinner, which is open to the entire campus, celebrates our diversity and inclusiveness — qualities that are not necessarily automatic. Education exposes us to a range of ideas that sometimes challenge us, occasionally inspire us, and often expand our perspectives. As educators we model critical thinking and analysis, and civil discourse. Providing additional space for these types of activities advances the work we do.
This week, leaders of Student Government Association, Staff Council, and Faculty Senate endorsed a series of talks on civic and political engagement. They will be nominating individuals to take part in a planning committee that will develop a series of open forums for the community to come together around engaged citizenship. The President’s Forum scheduled for this Sunday titled “The Road Ahead: United or Divided“ http://www.sunywcc.edu/events/presidents-forum-3/ seems a fitting launch for these forthcoming conversations.
We have had a week of important visits. They include our common read author Kym Ragusa, and poet Martín Espada, whose collection, The Republic of Poetry, was a finalist for the Pulitzer Prize. The Yonkers Activities Club hosted a “Social Justice Day” lecture in partnership with Student Involvement and the Yonkers Police Department. We welcomed many eager students on campus at our fall open house and we are excited to meet the students who will become our entering class of 2017! Finally, Pam Silvers from Asheville-Buncombe Technical Community College advised faculty, staff, and students on ways to increase recruitment and retention in non-traditional fields for their gender.
Thanks goes out to Sergeant Jennifer Carpenter of the Mount Vernon Police Department who visited the Mount Vernon Extension Center as part of the White House 21st Century Policing Initiative. Sgt. Carpenter was joined by co-chairs of the Mount Vernon My Brother’s Keeper program. The objectives include supporting young men of color to graduate high school, pursue post-secondary training, enter the workforce, and live safely in communities free of violence.
If it’s been a while since you’ve accessed the web calendar, here is a link to events currently posted: http://www.sunywcc.edu/events/. These activities provide ways for students and employees to make meaningful connections with the campus.
Dr. Belinda S. Miles