Journalist Cheryl Wills Presentation

Hostos is all about education and celebrating diversity. Those two subjects were brought together beautifully through a special event that brought back NY1 News anchor, award-winning journalist, and author Cheryl Wills to campus on February 8.

As a way to celebrate African-American History Month, Wills offered an incredible look into her past, which is highlighted in two published works, “Die Free: A Heroic Family Tale” and a children’s book, “The Emancipation of Grandpa Sandy Wills.”

The packed Savoy Multi-Purpose Room listened to the veteran television journalist talk about the powerful tale of her great-great-great-grandparents, Sandy Wills and Emma West Moore Wills, who fought valiantly for their rights. After Sandy was killed while bravely serving his country during the Civil War, Emma fought the government for his military pension…and won. Wills’ labor of love and enlightenment has been years in the making and involved pouring through thousands of documents from the National Archives. Her family’s story is so celebrated, that Wills became the first journalist invited to speak inside the United Nations General Assembly Hall for the International Remembrance of Victims of Slavery and the Transatlantic Slave Trade.

In addition to Hostos students, the event was attended by students from George Washington High School and the High School for Media and Communications.

A Q & A followed, where students engaged the veteran journalist about their own family histories and thoughts on African-American History Month. Associate Dean Ana García Reyes organized and moderated the event, which also included remarks by President David Gómez and Professors Cynthia Jones and Ana Ozuna of the Humanities Department and Black Studies Unit.

The lecture event was a fitting highlight to Hostos’ annual “Welcome Day,” which greeted new and returning students to a day of activities aimed at informing and fostering a sense of Hostos pride. Organized by the Office of Student Activities and the President’s Office, the day included fun photo ops, information about student services and clubs, a speed networking event, a bachata dance class, a pep rally, and much more.
The day culminated with a men’s and women’s basketball double-header, which saw the Caimans SWEEP the BATTLE OF THE BRONX against Bronx Community College.

Photos can be seen here

About Eugenio María de Hostos Community College
Hostos Community College is an educational agent for change, transforming and improving the quality of life in the South Bronx and neighboring communities since 1968. Hostos serves as a gateway to intellectual growth and socioeconomic mobility, and a point of departure for lifelong learning, success in professional careers, and transfer to advanced higher education programs. The College’s unique "student success coach" program, which partners students with individualized guidance, is emblematic of the premier emphasis on student support and services.

Hostos offers 27 associate degree programs and 2 certificate programs that facilitate easy transfer to The City University of New York (CUNY) four-year colleges or baccalaureate studies at other institutions. The College has an award-winning Division of Continuing Education & Workforce Development that offers professional development courses and certificate-bearing workforce training programs. The Hostos Center for the Arts & Culture (HCAC) is one of the pre-eminent Latino arts centers of the northeast. The HCAC has distinguished itself for showcasing traditional art forms as well as emerging and internationally renowned artists. Hostos Community College is part of CUNY, the nation’s leading urban public university serving more than 500,000 students at 24 colleges. For additional information, please visit our web-site at or call (718) 319-7900