The Eugenio María de Hostos Community College family may hold the year 2021 as a legacy year to remember. Despite all the seismic changes the COVID pandemic imposed on all of us across all sectors of society, this community college, in the heart of the South Bronx, overcame and shined through the toughest of times. Even when the pandemic kept most physically apart, the College came together with manos a la obra / all hands on deck to move Hostos forward in new and innovative ways and to ensure that it lives up to the promises made in its mission. 
And the Hostos mission is alive, and its actions acknowledged. The generous $15 Million Dollar gift from Ms. MacKenzie Scott, the largest in the College’s history, validated 50 years of visionary leadership, academic advancement, and urban impact for the Bronx and neighboring communities. 
Hostos continues to evolve and grow without losing ground in doing what it set out to do: educate and empower. Ms. Scott’s donation became a legacy project for Hostos President Daisy Cocco De Filippis and she quickly established the MacKenzie Scott’s Gift President’s Initiative for Student Success, College Growth and Stakeholders Engagement. Dr. Cocco De Filippis will manage the initiative supported by a selected Advisory Corps made up of faculty, staff, and students.
To that end, Hostos is investing over $500K in its inaugural year and preparing to roll out and implement a number of new programs and bolster others for Academic Year 2021–2022.
“A significant portion of this magnificent gift will be invested to ensure returns for many years to come in support of our Strategic Plan, the goals of this fund, supported by additional fundraising activities through the engagement of multiple stakeholders,” said Dr. Cocco De Filippis of the initiative. 
In tandem, the Community Advisory Council (CAC) established by President Cocco De Filippis in the fall of 2020 is a symbol of the bridge across the Grand Concourse that a brighter future for students is possible with the collaboration of people from the community. The CAC’s commitment centers on championing the gains for students of color and advancing diversity, equity, and inclusion and ways to create internship opportunities and job paths that may increase student retention and success. Their input and commitment to meet the implementation goals of the MacKenzie Scott’s Gift President’s Initiative for Student Success, College Growth and Stakeholders Engagement project could not come at a better time. 

Ms. MacKenzie Scott’s Gift Inaugural Semester

The combined efforts to support academic and job access tracks integrate to positively impact student retention and advancement through the following initiatives:

  • Families United in Education 

  • Jobs on Campus for Students 

  • The Committee on Sponsored Programs and Grants (CSPG) alongside the Hostos Research Center (HRC), the HRC Educational Research Group and the HRC-CSPG-ADELANTE 

  • Hostos Mentoring and Supporting Students: NextGen Public Health Scholars 2+2+2 Program (NexGen)

  • Hostos External Internships Program 

  • Students | LSAMP Intro to Research Seminar —Research Apprenticeship

  • Supporting the Bridge Tuition Support Assistance fund (BTSA)

  • Educating for Diversity

  • And the Ms. MacKenzie Scott Adult and Continuing Education Scholarship Fund (ACE). 

The Families United in Education initiative aims to provide innovative pathways for families, defined as two or more relatives enrolled at Hostos, to complete their associate degree together with adequate support, exposure, and encouragement. The “Jobs on Campus for Students” is a program designed to improve job skills and future job retention for undergraduate students by mentoring them to attain jobs that support administrative work in a professional office setting. 
The Dean of Academic Affairs and Institutional Effectiveness, Research and Assessment Babette Audant, Ph.D. recently stated that “The process of writing the MSCHE self-study report made evident that Hostos offers students access to several high-impact practices that could be better highlighted, and assessed, for their impact on student learning. Writing Intensive Courses and experiential learning are among these practices.” 
Hence, the President’s Initiatives will bolster CSPG, and launch the HRC, and the HRC Educational Research Group. Established in Spring 2021, the CSPG works to encourage faculty to develop sponsored programs and grant proposals by creating collaborative opportunities for faculty, staff, and students. The CSPG aims to foment a college-wide culture of active and disciplined practiced writing and research, and build skilled proposal writers that seek funding opportunities in support of academic programs, student support activities and philanthropic commissions. 

Designed to change lives by means of high-quality teaching and learning experiences, the HRC and the HRC Educational Research Group aim to foster in-house evidence-based educational research. Together, HRC and the CSPG invite faculty and staff to submit for the HRC-CSPG ADELANTE project, created to address research and/or need-based and/or creative/transformative interventions in all disciplines including Liberal Arts and Humanities, Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM), and Behavioral and Social Sciences.
The Hostos Mentoring and Supporting Students program is designed to mentor scholars and build a pipeline of talented transfer students to competitive institutions. The Inaugural Initiative is called NextGen Public Health Scholars 2+2+2 Program (NexGen). NextGen is a unique partnership of public and private institutions of higher education that welcome the next generation of college students from diverse backgrounds to enter much-needed careers in public health and epidemiology. While completing a two-year program at Hostos, candidate scholars are eligible to jointly apply to the Columbia School of General Studies to complete a Bachelor of Arts (BA) in the ensuing two years, followed by a two-year Master of Public Health (MPH) or Master of Science (MS) in the Department of Epidemiology at the Columbia Mailman School of Public Health. NexGen scholars receive full tuition coverage, a stipend, a personal laptop computer, and use of the Scholars Resource Room through the 2+2+2 path. Students will have access to myriad resources and unprecedented opportunities that will allow them to grow personally, intellectually, and professionally. 
Hostos External Internships Program focuses on supporting students to gain internships in cutting-edge design companies, well-respected hospitals, and prestigious engineering firms. The inaugural activity is Supporting Summer Internships for Students in the Hostos Research Center. Students | LSAMP Intro to Research Seminar — Research Apprenticeship — offered to all STEM students as Academic or Industry Internship. 
Continually support the Bridge Tuition Support Assistance fund (BTSA) to help students going through financial hardship and need assistance with tuition costs. The award is need-based and distributed in the form of a tuition voucher, that is applied directly to the student's balance. To be considered for a BTSA, students are required to apply and when necessary, provide supporting documentation.
Educating for Diversity is now a major area of investment in the President’s portfolio. Just as BIPOC communities across the globe called out for justice, racial equity, diversity, and inclusion in all areas of society, Hostos stood to meet the time thanks to Dr. Cocco De Filippis’ numerous cultural and humanistic activities with sponsored programs like Veladas Hostosianas/Hostos Culture Talks, Black at Hostos series, and the Dr. Nasry Michelen Allied Health Lecture Series. All of them cradled the intellect and sensitivities of the Hostos community through a historical time of political unrest and physical isolation because of the COVID-19 pandemic.
The Ms. MacKenzie Scott Adult and Continuing Education Scholarship Fund (ACE). The continuing education division at Hostos will award up to 25, $1,000 scholarships to students wishing to transition from continuing ed to matriculation. The ACE scholarship would pay for occupational training courses. Currently, there are no scholarships available to continuing education students.

Middle States Commission on Higher Education

The MSCHE will be with Hostos in April of 2022 for the decisive accreditation visit. Dr. Clayton Railey, our Middle States Commission of Higher Education reviewer, validated Hostos’ three-year Middle States Accreditation journey culminating with the public submission of the Self-Study Draft report dated November 3, 2021. 

“This preliminary accreditation visit left us invigorated and with a deeper understanding of how the process improves our institution’s daily efforts,” wrote MSCHE Co-Chair Professor Nelson Nuñez-Rodríguez. “Dr. Railey commended the overall self-study work. He considered the submitted narrative a strong report. At this formative assessment point, he found no major red flags in the narrative while suggesting key areas that would strengthen narrative understanding and the evidence-based story. Our reviewer suggested enhancing the mission-rooted social justice frame of our narrative and reinforcing the relationship between chapter conclusions and the supported report.” Professor Nuñez Rodríguez went on to highlight that Dr. Railey, “celebrated the institution’s assessment framework revolving around the A-PART scheme, and invites us to reflect on key questions impacting student success.” Overall, the preliminary visit asked us to reflect on the best ways to use the self-study effort for our next institutional strategic plan to capitalize on our findings and continue to improve our institution. 
Without assessment leadership, meeting the milestone of the Middle States Commission on Higher Education would not have been possible. Led by Dean Babette Audant, Ph.D., the Office of Institutional Effectiveness, Research, and Assessment has played a pivotal role in scaffolding a synthesized yet robust framework for improved self-inquiry at an institutional level. The A-PART grid provides an excellent opportunity to enable departments to be self-reflective, track activities and their outcomes throughout the academic year, demonstrate how one year’s results inform next year’s planning, and document assessment efforts and learnings. Critically, the A-PART serves as a framework for conversations among faculty within an individual department across all semesters in a given academic year. And finally, it also provides the Provost and department chairs with a foundation for a culminating annual conversation about accomplishments, opportunities, and resource allocation for the coming academic year. 

Community Relations and Elected Officials

Undertaking these assessment projections benefit the work of the Offices of Governmental and External Affairs and Community Relations. From its beginnings, Hostos has opened its doors to the community. Gatherings that stretch beyond academic pursuits have filled the halls for years. These efforts have consistently garnered the support of leading community figures. Providing an occasion for students, faculty, and staff to learn what elected officials are doing to serve the district and constituents that make up the Hostos community. These efforts equip our representatives to build informed budget appropriations that keep education in the foreground as vital for the growth development of the Bronx. 
This year alone Hostos President Daisy Cocco De Filippis, Director of Governmental and External Affairs Director Eric Radezky, Ph.D., and Dean Ana I. García Reyes welcomed numerous elected officials that represent the constituency of Hostos Community College. The distinguished guests have participated in Veladas Hostosianas and commemorative events throughout the year include: NYC Councilmembers Eric Dinowitz (D-11), Kevin Riley (D-), and Rafael Salamanca Jr. (D-17); New York State Assemblymembers Kenny Burgos (D-), Jeffrey Dinowitz (D-81), Karines Reyes (D-87), Amanda Septimo (D-84), and Yudelka Tapia (D-86). New York State Senators Jamaal Baily (36), Alessandra Biaggi (D-34), Gustavo Rivera (D-33), and José M. Serrano (D-29). U.S. House of Representative members Congressmen Jamaal Bowman (D-16), Adriano Espaillat (D-13) and Ritchie Torres (D-15). New York State Comptroller Thomas DiNapoli. 

In August, Hostos celebrated the start of the upcoming 2021–2022 academic year with the Hostos Welcome Festival. President Cocco De Filippis proudly welcomed over 100 students, faculty, staff, and alumni to the Evelina Antonetty Playground. Open to all members of the local community with free food, raffle prizes, and information tables. Representatives from the MTA and elected officials attended: New York State Comptroller Thomas DiNapoli, Councilmember Rafael Salamanca, Assemblymember Karines Reyes, and representatives from Assemblymember Kenny Burgos’ office. 
On Thursday, September 9, 2021, the Hostos community came together to remember the tragic events of September 11, 2001, with a panel discussion moderated by Hostos President Daisy Cocco De Filippis and Director of Governmental and External Affairs Eric Radezky and honored guests Congressman Adriano Espaillat, Senator John Liu, and Assemblymember Amanda Septimo. 
For 20 years Hostos has stood by the families and victims of AA Flight 587 thanks to the unwavering commitment of Community Relations Dean Ana I. García Reyes. Dr. Daisy Cocco De Filippis addressed the guests during the tribute event held on November 12. “Time has shown us that grief is a kind of remembering, something not to be shunned, but embraced,” she said. “A measure of solace can be found in remembering our lost ones — and in cherishing and preserving our memories of them. This is what has brought us together today, twenty long years later: to grieve, to remember, to cherish. My deep gratitude to Assemblymembers Amanda Septimo and Yudelka Tapia and Commissioner of the Mayor’s Office of Immigrant Affairs Raquel Batista for joining us on this solemn occasion.”
For Hispanic Heritage Month, Dean of Community Relations García Reyes and Hostos Paralegal Rafael Torres moderated the Distinguished Latino Leaders and Student Scholars Virtual Awards Ceremony. The honorees were: Sarah Aponte, '92, Chief Librarian of the CUNY DSI and Hostos Alumna; Dr. Bienvenido Fajardo, Chief Executive Office of Bronx United IPA; Dr. Ramon Tallaj, President and CEO of SOMOS Community Health Care Services; and Dr. Anderson Torres, President and CEO of R.A.I.N Community Services. Ramon Mercedes, Journalist and President of Prensa & Comunidad Hispana. Gladys Bruno, 1199SEIU Vice President, and Charles Drago, Interim Provost & Vice President of Academic Affairs, presented this year’s 1199SEIU Scholarships to Hostos students Juana Guridis; Melissa Grillo, Anna Mikheyeva, Katherine Espinal, and Saby Taboada. Joining the virtual awards ceremony were NYS Senator José M. Serrano, NYS Senator Gustavo Rivera, NYS Assemblywoman Amanda Septimo, NY City Councilman Rafael Salamanca, NY City Councilman Oswald Feliz, and Dolly Martínez, CUNY Chancellor’s Chief of Staff and Associate Vice Chancellor for the Executive Office.
The Chancellor of Universidad Autónoma of Santo Domingo (UASD), Dr. Emma Polanco Melo, visited Hostos Community College in April and met with Hostos Interim President Dr. Daisy Cocco De Filippis and Dean of Community Relations García Reyes.
In March President Cocco De Filippis and Dean García Reyes presented an incredible panel for Women’s History Month with six powerful elected women officials: Congresswoman Carolyn Maloney, NYS Assemblymember Amanda Septimo, NYS Assemblywoman Nathalia Fernandez, NYS Assemblymember Karines Reyes, NYS Assemblymember Chantel Jackson, and newly elected Bronx Borough President, formerly NYC Councilmember, Vanessa Gibson. Congresswoman Maloney set the tone with profound and time-tested advice sharing with the audience, “Take the chance, never take the advice of others that tell you, you can’t do something.” 
On Friday, May 28, 2021, Hostos held its 51st commencement ceremony for 1225 registered candidates for graduation. Cheering on the candidates of the 51st Commencement were CUNY Chancellor Félix V. Matos Rodríguez, Senator Charles Schumer, Senator Kirsten Gillibrand, Congressman Adriano Espaillat, Congressman Richie Torres, Assemblymember, Amanda Septimo, and Councilman Rafael Salamanca Jr.
The College welcomed Julissa Reynoso Pantaleón, Chief of Staff to First Lady Dr. Jill Biden, and former United States Ambassador to Uruguay as the keynote speaker. Ms. Pantaleón remarked: “Like many of you, I’m an immigrant, and I grew up in the Bronx, so I’m especially excited to be with you here today and encourage you by sharing this vibrant moment with you. Today as you enter your new lives and continue your careers remember what year we have lived as families, communities, as a country, as a world. We need you because we need to build back better than ever. Be present with the joy that you have graduated during the period that has tested us all and be present with the knowledge and insight that this education gives you.”

Aspen Prize for Community College Excellence

Capping this historical year was the recent announcement that Hostos became one of 150 institutions eligible to compete for the $1 million Aspen Prize for Community College Excellence, the nation's signature recognition of high achievement and performance among America's community colleges. This is the second time Hostos has been named an Aspen Prize Top 150. The selected schools stood out from more than 1,000 community colleges nationwide based on performance in student outcomes and improvement over time.

Public Forums, Panels, and Symposiums

And though the pandemic changed everything, it allowed for a robust online programming lineup that attracted hundreds and sparked dialogue across the campus. 
Three “Black at Hostos Town Halls” held in February, March, and April examining Americanism, citizenship, and who gets to claim the American Dream; the long history of anti-Black racism; and race, medicine, and healthcare in the United States with, “The Stories We Tell: Race in America,” “Becoming Jim Crow: A Long, Legal History,” and “We Too Sing America: From Experimentation to Participation,” respectively. The town halls were made possible thanks to the leadership of Interim Executive Chief of Staff Diana Kreymer, Hostos Professor Kristopher Burrell, Ph.D., and Professor Kathy Taylor, JD, from NVCC.

Then in May, Hostos presented “Speaking Up for AAPI at Hostos” to address the spike in crimes and racism against Asian American and Pacific Islander communities across the city and country. The program contextualized the situation within the broader sphere of violence against communities of color, and panelists discussed opportunities for interracial solidarity and allyship. Distinguished guests included Congresswoman Grace Meng and Senator John Liu. The event was part of the College’s 12th Annual Center for Teaching and Learning Professional Development Day and was dedicated to the late and beloved Hostos Professor Isabel Li.

Culture Talks

Incredible gatherings took place and the President’s main cultural initiative “Veladas Hostosianas | Hostos Culture Talks” series carried on with vibrant offerings rooted in enriching humanity. 

The first Velada of 2021 in January, marked the birthday and legacy of Don Eugenio María de Hostos with a presentation by Professor Emeritus Orlando J. Hernández and poet and critic David Cortés Cabán. 
For Black History Month, Leslie King, Interim Associate Dean and Financial Aid Director led “A Conversation on Blackness” with Assistant Professor of History at Saint Peter’s University Dr. John Wesley Johnson, Jr. about what it means to be Black—historically and currently—in America using Johnson’s presentation, “My Cousin, Tu Prima: The Black Family and the African Diaspora.” A historically documented account of how the African diaspora across North and South America, including the Caribbean, have more common ground and brotherhood than disparate and separate histories. 
In March, the Women’s History Month Veladas delivered more than they promisedThe first event featured Hostos alumnae Idelsa Méndez and Lina Cruz who engaged in an empowering heartfelt message for students pursuing degrees and career dreams, “engage, work hard, and ask for help.” Alumni Manager Féliz Sánchez, a Hostos alumnus himself, served as master of ceremonies. Then later in March the inspiring story of the great Puerto Rican leader Evelina Antonetty came to life. Her story is now a new doctoral dissertation titled “Dr. Evelina Antonetty, The Hell Lady of the Bronx, a Puerto Rican Woman and her Legacy to the Diaspora of the South Bronx, 1965 to 1984,” written by Hostos’ own and beloved Dr. Nydia Edgecombe. 
April is National Poetry Month and Dr. Cocco De Filippis held a tribute to the late and beloved Dominican poet Norberto James Rawlings. The eulogy proved that only a poet could elicit oratory candor in English, Italian, and Spanish. Colleagues, family, and friends lined up to express their hearts on the poet’s humanist and literary amplitude. The moving eulogies captured the greatness of a man of words.
In honor of Pride Month, the Velada screened Hostos Professor and award-winning filmmaker Joelle González–Laguer’s short documentary “CHAKALMEX.” 
Later in the fall audiences waited for the Hostos Italian American Heritage Month Celebration to begin with the sound of a Napoletana Tarantella which had everyone shaking off a bit of the pandemic woes, just as the old tradition. It was the perfect occasion where music locked in a sincere spirit celebrating honorees Danielle Jones representing New York State Comptroller DiNapoli; Chair, John D. Calandra, Italian American Faculty and Staff Advisory Council; Dr. Donna Chirico, Italian American Institute; Luigi Ghidetti, Executive Chef, Porto Salvo; and Michael M. Knobbe, Executive Director, BronxNet, until the very end.
Governmental and External Affairs Director Eric Radezky, brought together Congressman Jamaal A. Bowman, Assemblymember Jeff Dinowitz, Assemblymember Kenny Burgos, Councilmember Kevin Riley, and Councilmember Eric Dinowitz for a November 16 conversation on male leadership and the importance of role modeling for young men. Radezky co-moderated with Peter Mertens, Interim Dean for Continuing Education and Workforce Development.
For Puerto Rican Heritage Month, held on November 19, the President’s Office welcomed Hostos Community College Foundation Chair José Sánchez-Kinghorn in conversation with prominent Puerto Rican marketing executive and historian Dr. Luis Rafael Burset with “Puerto Rico: Conexiones y Pluralidades Antillanas / Puerto Rico: Antillean and Plural Connections.” 
And, as part of an ongoing civic and humanistic collaboration between the Nasry Michelen Foundation and Eugenio María de Hostos Community College, President Cocco De Filippis welcomed a proposal from the Nasry Michelen Foundation to support an additional public forum addressing critical issues in healthcare, and together they launched the “Dr. Nasry Michelen Allied Health Lecture Series.” This year alone they have presented the following forums: “COVID and Its Impact on Children” with Dr. Rocio Hernández, Dr. Juan Tapia Mendoza, and Dr. Bienvenido Fajardo. “The Economic and Financial Impact of COVID in Our Community” with trailblazing entrepreneur Benny Lorenzo introduced by Nasry Michelen Foundation Chair Cira Angeles. And “COVID and its Impact on Dentistry” with Dr. Donald A. Tucker and moderated by Hostos Professor Julie Bencosme.


Additional milestones for Hostos came from the Division of Institutional Advancement which reported a record-breaking year for fundraising between the annual Golf Outing event and Giving Tuesday.
The morning of Giving Tuesday — dubbed #CUNYTuesday at all 25 CUNY Colleges — donations to Hostos Community College were over $30,000. A respectable amount, but shy of the $35,000 goal. Thanks to tremendous efforts led by Development Officer Idelsa Méndez, the division of institutional advancement raised nearly $60,000 in one day, and as of December 6 for the #CUNYTuesday campaign has secured over $100,000. 
This amount shattered Hostos’ previous #CUNYTuesday record of $68,000 set in 2016. As of December 1, the #CUNYTuesday fundraising leaderboard showed Hostos ranked 
# 1 among the community colleges, and 11 overall. This is quite an achievement considering that Hostos is one of the smallest CUNY schools.
The 15th Annual Scholarship Fund Golf Outing Classic at the Pelham Bay & Split Rock Golf Courses event surpassed its $50,000 goal and reached close to $120,000 to bolster scholarships. Three new scholarships were developed because of the event: The Bronx Rising Initiative Scholarship, the Cocco De Filippis Family Scholarship, and the yet-to-be-named Montefiore Scholarship.
Foundation Board member Jason Caraballo presented the awards for the evening. The foursome representing the CUNY Athletic Conference, comprised of Michael Sporton, Vincent Naletilic, Zak Ivkovic, and Jim Vogt, clenched the first-place trophy, followed by the runner-up foursome from ABM Facility Management, Daniel Mucci, Peter La Tempa, Thanassi Arvanitis, and Alex Elkins. The Men’s Longest Drive Winner was Daniel Mucci of ABM Facility Management and the Women’s Longest Drive award was bestowed to Monique Lopez of JPMorgan Chase. The Closest to the Pin Award went to Luca Catania of Uncurtain, Inc.

Appointment of President Daisy Cocco De Filippis

President Daisy Cocco De Filippis was appointed President of Eugenio María de Hostos on July 6, 2021.
“It is an honor for CUNY to officially name the eminent Daisy Cocco De Filippis as president of Hostos Community College,” said Chancellor Félix V. Matos Rodríguez, who served as Hostos president from 2009-2014. “Dr. Cocco De Filippis is, indeed, legendary. She has been recognized for her efforts over decades as a key education leader — and for her historic scholarship in Dominican Studies. Her research has enlightened us in regard to the Dominican community, its strong women, its emblematic history, and its contributions to the world, our country, our city — and to the University. Dr. Cocco De Filippis’ work also speaks to CUNY’s key promise to provide students with the opportunity to succeed on a level playing field. With her skill, her diligence, and her heart, she has made this success a reality for so many and will, of course, continue to do so.”
President Cocco De Filippis was recognized by Schneps Media Among Power Women in the Bronx, the Nasry Michelen Foundation, Bronx Power 50 List by ‘City & State New York’, as one of City & State NY’s Higher Education Power 100. She appeared as a guest on MNN’s Punto de Vista with Carlos Cabrera, and The Bay Path University Center for Higher Education Leadership and Innovative Practice’s IngenioUS podcast hosted by Dr. Melissa Morriss-Olson.
In March, President Cocco De Filippis participated in the CUNY Career Compass for Women Leaders Fireside Chat session alongside York College President Berenecea Eanes and Kingsborough Community College President Claudia Schrader with Baruch College Chief of Staff Kenya Lee as moderator. Dr. Cocco De Filippis appeared in two events for Dominican American best-selling author Julia Alvarez, “Early Writings of Julia Alvarez: Julia’s Journey Home- From Homecoming to In the Time of the Butterflies,” as an expert panelist; and a one-on-one intimate conversation “10 Questions with Julia Alvarez” where Cocco De Filippis spoke with the author about her book “Afterlife.”

President Cocco De Filippis also participated in Central Connecticut State University’s celebration of Jorge Morales’ “Roots of the Caribbean” mural, in a one-day conference in September. Jorge Morales’ nationally recognized art piece, which hangs in CCSU’s Student Center, makes a powerful statement about Caribbean history, but few observers can identify all the references it contains. The conference aimed to help the CCSU community, and the Connecticut public, better understand Morales’ argument about history expressed in paint alongside scholars Mary Ann Mahony, Francisco Scarano, Lissette Acosta Corniel, and Fernando Betancourt.
In August, Cocco De Filippis was appointed to the Central Connecticut State University Advisory Board by President Zulma Toro of Central Connecticut State University for her experience in higher education, compassion for underserved populations, and the vulnerable. President of CCSU Dr. Toro later welcomed Dr. Cocco de Filippis in the Spanish Caribbean Women Artists and Intellectuals forum in October.
The Hispanic/Latino Cultural Center of New York celebrated Hispanic Heritage Month with the “15th feria del libro hispano” honoring Jose Miguel de la Rosa. Dr. Cocco De Filippis presented at the conference and shared an essay on Jose de la Rosa’s literary works alongside Dr. Andruccioli, Dr. Gutierrez, Dr. Corniel, Dr. Drago, Dr. Ramos, and Dr. Suarez-Coalla. The moderator for the session was Ms. Yrene Santos.

Continuing Education and Workforce Development

The Hostos Division of Continuing Education and Workforce Development (CEWD) is equally engaged and aligned with the Colleges goals to find as many ways as possible to support students that are committed to obtaining their degrees, transition from non-credit to credit-bearing courses, and providing financial aid to Continuing Ed students. 

The CEWD has been hard at play with the College’s Division of Academic Affairs who jointly received $430,000 from the New York State through the Consolidated Funding Application (CFA) process in Next Generation Job Linkage funds. CEWD was also awarded $193,000 from New York City’s Department of Youth and Community Development (DYCD) to continue the Train and Earn Career Pathways Program. Hostos CEWD is also part of the consortium of New York City community colleges and the City University of New York (CUNY) to receive $5 million from the U.S. Department of Labor grant that will provide Technology, Health Care, and Education upskilling programs to people in underemployed industries and communities across New York City, especially those impacted by the COVID-19 crisis. Hostos partnered with LaGuardia Community College and funded by NYCCT for $700,000 in support of the NYC Accelerated Workforce Recovery Hub to pay for tuition for students taking CNA, PCT, CMAA, and ComptTIA. Additional support for CEWD came from the Mother Cabrini Foundation for $150,000 to support/expand our Community Healthcare Worker Apprenticeship Program. 
And the Small Business Services agency injected an $862,000 grant to CEWD to restart the 8-week intensive First Course NYC culinary training program interrupted by the pandemic in 2020. First Course NYC focuses on getting New Yorkers into Line Chef positions at mid-to-high-end restaurants throughout the city. Following the boot camp, trainees will embark on a 6-week apprenticeship at various restaurants brokered by the NYC Food & Beverage Commission, where the goal is for them to be brought on as permanent employees. 

Faculty Achievements

Throughout the academic year, faculty have demonstrated bravery, commitment, discipline, and without their dedication, the mission of Hostos wouldn’t be possible. They were presented with extraordinary circumstances and still delivered above and beyond, and that work is being recognized. From voting rights to science life and artistic work, faculty at Hostos participate in a wide range of activities that impact society.

Hostos Oasis for Parents’ Education Program
The National Science Foundation (NSF) awarded $2.3 million to Hostos Community College’s “Hostos Oasis for Parents’ Education (HOPE): A Holistic Two-Generation Approach to Improving STEM Education in the South Bronx” program. This award is funded in whole or in part under the American Rescue Plan Act of 2021.

The HOPE Team consists of Principal Investigator Sarah Hoiland, an Associate Professor of Sociology in the Behavioral and Social Sciences Department, and Co-Principal Investigators Associate Professor Elys Vasquez-Iscan, Instructor Norberto Hernández Valdés-Portela, Assistant Professor JungHang Lee, and Assistant Professor Biao Jiang from the Education Department, Behavioral and Social Sciences Department, Mathematics Department and Natural Sciences Department, respectively.
In reflecting on writing the grant, PI Hoiland said, “I wrote this proposal after one year of pandemic teaching and hearing countless stories of student parents working full-time jobs, taking 15+ credits, and helping their own children with online school. My students inspired me. They were hopeful. I wanted to provide them with an oasis where they could learn uninterrupted and their children could have a college experience. There was urgency. As one year of online learning quickly stretched into two for many, our team worked together to submit our proposal. Our HOPE Team is incredibly well-rounded and deeply committed to the Hostos mission, the HOPE Project, and research that will inform programming and funding.”
Voting Rights
Learning how and why to vote is an active part of the educational experience at Hostos thanks to Assistant Professor Helen Chang and Associate Professor Sarah Hoiland who spearheaded a series of virtual Presidential Debate Watch Parties with the support of the Office of the President and SDEM. The watch parties offered attendees an opportunity to find strength and healing in the communal experience and encouraged civic engagement. The last debate party took place in October near the election of November 2 with Hostos Student and Politics Club Officer Nickell Mckenzie-Woody, Hostos Student and Politics Club Officer Sadia Zaman, General Manager Craft Restaurant John N. Gargano, Jr. (Hostos ’19, NYU SPS ’21), Co-Founder and President of Uplift NYC Domingo Estevez, and Early College Liaison for Hostos Lincoln Academy Rocio Rayo (Hostos ’11).
For some time, Hostos has been playing a major role in changing the face of the field of science from allied health to STEM. Hostos is impacting the field by graduating nurses and engineers and many other allied health, science, technology, engineering, and math professionals.
The Hostos Natural Sciences produced the “Science for the Future” Science Week in November thanks to Hostos Professors Anna Ivanova, Kathleen Delgado, and Soheli Chowdhury, who comprise the Science Week Committee. They welcomed scholar and scientist Dr. Christopher E. Mason, Professor of Genomics, Physiology, and Biophysics at Weill Cornell Medicine, who presented “A 500-year plan for medicine and technology on Earth, Mars, and Beyond” as the week’s keynote address.
Hostos also celebrated Earth Week 2021 in April, presenting an array of virtual immersive and interactive events, including a special virtual keynote presentation on carbon sequestration from Peter Kelemen, Arthur D. Storke Memorial Professor and Chair of the Department of Earth and Environmental Sciences at Columbia University.

Allied Health 
Allied health units continue to surpass projections and maintain their affordable and competitive edge. The American Registry of Radiologic Technologists (ARRT) exam has a pass rate benchmark of 75% for a five-year average but at Hostos, the Radiologic Technology, credentialing examination rate on a five-year average was 98%. And the Rad Tech job placement is 100%, with the Joint Review Committee on Education in Radiologic Technology (JRCERT) establishing it at 75%.
Through the years the Nursing Department at Hostos has become a competitive program known for academic rigor and the numbers show nursing at Hostos is preparing students for the job force. In 2019, 91% of first-time nurse candidates passed the National Council Licensure Examination-Registered Nurse (RN-NCLEX) and the NCLEX-Practical Nurse candidates obtained a 100% pass rate.
For Dental Hygiene, the Commission on Dental Accreditation of the American Dental Association sets the standards. The exams are given by the Commission on Dental Competency Assessment (CDCA) and the National Board Dental Hygiene Exam (NBDHE). The pass rate for the clinical dental hygiene exam (CDCA) for 2018 was 100%, 2019 was 97% and 2020 was 100%. The pass rate for the NBDHE for 2018 was 92%, 2019 was 94% and for 2020 was 95%. And the program's job placement rate average from the years 2018 to 2020 is 100%. 
The Hostos Community College Joint Dual Engineering Degree Program with The City College of New York's Grove School of Engineering was recognized as a finalist for the 2021 EXAMPLES of EXCELENCIA for its leadership in intentionally and effectively serving Latino students, and it also received the 2021 Inspiring Programs in STEM Award from INSIGHT Into Diversity Magazine. The award honors colleges and universities that encourage and assist students from underrepresented groups to enter the fields of science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM).
Assistant Professor and Reference Librarian Jorge Matos works at the forefront of Disability Advocacy and Research. His contribution to the history of disability advocacy is praise-worthy. Matos Valldejuli was an invited panelist at the Eunice Kennedy Shriver 100: A Legacy for Inclusion celebration held on July 10. The event was hosted by the John Fitzgerald Kennedy National Historic Site, Friends of the JFK Birthplace, Special Olympics Massachusetts, The Eunice Shriver Center at UMass Medical School, and the Brookline Interactive Group. Eunice Kennedy Shriver 100: A Legacy for Inclusion marked the 100th anniversary of Mrs. Shriver’s birth and the program offered two-panel discussions: one on Mrs. Shriver’s life and another on her legacy, featuring a heartfelt introduction by Mrs. Shriver’s son and longtime Special Olympics Chairman Timothy Shriver. Matos Valldejuli appeared in the first panel alongside Eunice Kennedy Shriver biographer and Professor of the Practice of Journalism at Brandies University Eileen McNamara, and Rosemary Kennedy biographer and Brandies WSRC Scholar Kate Clifford Larson. The panel was moderated by Allison C. Carey, Professor in the Department of Sociology and Anthropology at Shippensburg University. 
The Humanities
The Latin American Writers Institute published issue #17 of the Hostos Review titled “De las condiciones negras: un diálogo entre el Caribe francófono y el Caribe hispanoDes conditiones noires: un dialogue entre les Caraïbes francophones et hispanophones/ Black Conditions: A French-Spanish Caribbean Dialogue.” The tri-lingual issue — English, French, and Spanish — is an homage to the mostly untold and unexplored story on the plural intersectionality that exists in the Caribbean because of the numerous European imperial nations that took hold of the lands. The repercussions are felt, seen, and heard to this day, and language plurality is an obvious reminder of this history but has mostly gone unspoken about until now.
Art historian and Hostos Professor Thomas Beachdel, Ph.D., in collaboration with artist Marie Tomanova, launched a new book, “New York New York” (Hatje Cantz, 2021), which documents the mythic pull of New York City and youthful independence and identity. It expands on their highly acclaimed first book together, “Young American” (Paradigm Publishing, 2019). Beachdel, who teaches in the College’s Humanities Department, and recently established a Global Humanities Unit at Hostos, writes: “Tomanova left her family farm in the small border town of Mikulov in the Czech Republic and came to the United States in 2011 and to New York in 2012, alone, knowing no one. And her world expands. It is a story of dreaming, risking, surviving, and finding one’s own way, and it likely mirrors the aspirations and the emotional landscape of the individuals Tomanova has photographed for ‘New York New York.’” 
Students in Professor Ian Charles Scott’s art classes received a special delivery ahead of the start of the Fall 2021 semester. Scott, who teaches Painting and Drawing 1 and 2, sent his students ink and watercolor sketches on the back of the envelopes, which were filled with course information and other goodies. “It's started as quick ink sketches and eventually became watercolors on the envelopes,” he said of the initiative. “I know I would have been super delighted to get a personal painting done just for me from one of my teachers when I was at art school, so I feel it's an opportunity to give the students that experience I never had!” Scott’s goal in sending out his welcome packages was to “add the ‘human’ to ‘humanities’ and expand the inner being.”  
Hostos Adjunct Professor Marcella Mandracchia of the Hostos Education Department was selected as the winner of the President’s Award for Excellence in Teaching by Adjunct Faculty in the School of Arts and Humanities at Queens College.
Professor Marcella Mandracchia, adjunct assistant professor in the Hostos Education Department, was selected as the winner of the President’s Award for Excellence in Teaching by Adjunct Faculty in the School of Arts and Humanities at Queens College. She works within the Linguistics and Communication Disorders Department in TESOL Education. This is in recognition of her dedication to her students. President Wu will give out the award and $2,500 prize at the Queen’s College State of the College Address in October 2021.


On November 30, three members of the Hostos Public Safety Department were recognized for service above and beyond the call of duty at CUNY University’s Public Safety Medal Awards ceremony. The event was held at City College and was presided over by Andre Brown, the Executive Director of CUNY Public Safety. Peace Officer Raul De Jesus received the University Public Safety Commendation Medal. Peace Officer Raymundo Valentin and Sergeant Curt Caesar received the University Public Safety Excellent Duty Medal. 
In addition, the entire Public Safety Department at Hostos was given the University Public Safety Unit Citation Award for its service during the pandemic. 
Earlier in the year, Officer Raul DeJesus was standing outside of Hostos’ A-Building when an individual exiting the subway station located in front of the College pleaded for his assistance and told him that there was an incoherent man on the subway platform, walking around aimlessly with a small infant. Officer DeJesus immediately notified his supervisor and NYPD via his two-way radio. He then entered the subway station with Sergeant Alfredo Rodríguez and Sergeant Mayra Pinzon. Inside the subway station, they encountered the man inside a waiting train, holding an infant. Officer DeJesus, Sergeant Rodríguez, and Sergeant Pinzon coached the male subject out of the subway car and onto the platform as NYPD Transit Officers arrived. He was taken into custody by NYPD, and EMS transported the baby to a local hospital. DeJesus received a plaque from the President for his exemplary service at an All College meeting earlier in the year.


Ten Hostos students participated in this year’s Annual Biomedical Research Conference for Minority Students (ABRCMS), one of the largest communities of underrepresented minorities in science, technology, engineering, and mathematics. Two of the 10 also presented at the Society for Advancement of Chicanos/Hispanics and Native Americans in Science (SACNAS) National Diversity in STEM Conference, held in October. 
Scarlet Martínez Cardoze and Onyinyechi W. Obineche, two Hostos students who participated in ABRCMS 2021 were selected with the ABRCMS 2021 Presentation Award. The research work is In Silico Discovery of Neutralizing Agents Targeting SARS-CoV-2 Spike Glycoprotein. Martínez Cardoze and Obineche worked with research mentor Professor Yoel Rodríguez. Obineche’s research experience was sponsored by CRSP (CUNY Research Scholars Program). Martínez Cardoze’s research was sponsored by the CUNY Community College ​Research Grant (CCRG) awarded to Dr. Yoel Rodríguez and Dr. José A. Fernández Romero of the Borough of Manhattan Community College. Martínez Cardoze’s is a former CUNY’s Hostos LSAMP F​ellow (’19-’20).​ Onyinyechi W. Obineche (Cohort 2019-2020) and Scarlet Martínez Cardoze (Cohort 2020-2021) are HEAT Scholars.​​
Hostos Allied Health students Fatima Choudhry and Silvia J. Prado Carpio are the recipients of the Nasry Michelen Foundation’s first $2,000 allied health scholarship award
Oumou Dili Traore knows how empowering education can be. After she graduated from high school in Mali, she accepted an aunt’s invitation to come and study in New York City. English lessons at CUNY in the Heights were followed by enrollment at Hostos. Qualifying for the prestigious Kaplan Leadership Program.
​​José Juncos is a Navy Veteran who also worked for the criminal justice system until he retired after 28 years of service. He then decided to pursue his passion for serving the community. In the Fall of 2020, Juncos completed the CEWD Credentialed Alcohol & Substance Abuse (CASAC) Program. He is currently working at a Brooklyn-based addiction treatment center. “I had a good experience at Hostos,” he shared. “It was challenging, but I would do it all again if I had to because helping people is my calling.”​
The Hostos Veterans Affairs Office was pleased to announce the first Hostos student awardees of the Joe Alicea Veterans Fund scholarship: Specialist Michael Colón and Petty Officer Second Class Shalikah Ellington. They will each receive $1,000 in support of their academic journey. The Joe Alicea Veterans Fund was established in honor of Joseph “Joe” Alicea, long-time Financial Aid Director at Hostos who served the College for over 39 years. Alicea was a Vietnam Veteran.
Student Natasha Villegas designs a new future for herself at Hostos. Thanks to Professor Andrew London's generosity, Villegas has continued to soar since enrolling in the Digital Design & Animation program in 2019 and going on to intern for TED-Ed as an assistant pre-production artist. 
Early College Initiative-Hosts Lincoln Academy student Isaac Montiel Set graduated with stellar grades, a high school diploma, and an associate degree. The Liberal Arts major earned excellent grades and his career goal is to become an electrician or mechanic. He is grateful to HLA and the College for helping him flourish as a scholar and as an individual, and he strongly encourages his peers to maximize their opportunities to do the same. “It’s been a blast. If anyone is offered an opportunity to take college courses, they should definitely take them. These programs are out there, and it would be helpful if more people were aware of what they have,” he said.

Hostos Center for the Arts & Culture

Félix M. Arocho was appointed the new Director of the Hostos Center for the Arts & Culture in August after twenty years serving numerous roles ranging from planning events and performances to developing budgets, raising funds, and negotiating contracts to bring events to diverse audiences. 
An integral part of Hostos Community College since 1982, the Hostos Center is recognized nationally as a leader in Latino/a/x and African-based programming and is dedicated to the development of emerging artists and the creation of new work.
The Hostos Center stayed active throughout the pandemic presenting online programming that grew its audience. The Small Business Administration Shuttered awarded the Hostos Center a total of $489,922 from the Venue Operators Grant and they received a $100,000 grant from the Howard Gilman Foundation for general operating expenses over the course of the 2022 and 2023 fiscal years.