Noted and Quoted

Guiding Latinas Onto Career Tracks

Soto makes appointments for First Deputy Mayor Patricia E. Harris.

 As executive assistant to First Deputy Mayor Patricia E. Harris, Erica Soto is a scheduler par excellence, deciding who gets an audience with her boss.

Victoria Rodriguez, a financial analyst for Lehman Brothers, also finds herself in the thick of things whether she's supporting portfolio managers in account balancing, trade execution and settlement, asset allocation or discrepancy research.

And over at Macy's East, administrative assistant Maria Vasquez was the point person for informing stores about seminars and new-program guidelines until she recently moved on to a new job as an assistant to the chief of the staff at the procurement department at the United Nations. The positions are varied, but the careers of these three Baruch College graduates link them in one fundamental way: they all got their start via internships arranged by 100 Hispanic Women, a nonprofit organization dedicated to guiding young Latinas toward excellence in leadership.Their inspiring success stories were spotlighted during 100 Hispanic Women's 2008 Young Latinas Leadership Institute awards ceremony, where five high-achieving University students were presented with four-year $1,000 annual scholarships. Inductees also get opportunities for corporate scholarships and internships plus other support designed to keep them on the college track. Newest recipients are Bianca Batista, City College; Stacey Josephine Martinez, Baruch College; Katherine Andreina Reyes, Brooklyn College; Jacqueline Delia Serrano, John Jay College; and Rachel Soto (Erica Soto's sister), Queens College.

Analyst Rodriguez juggles many tasks at Lehman Brothers.

"We never would have had the scholarship program without the support of CUNY, which has helped us identify worthy students, donated campus space for workshops and supplied us with money to pay interns like Erica, Maria and Victoria," said Shirley Rodriguez Remeneski, president and cofounder of the organization.

Soto, Rodriguez and Vasquez said the program changed their lives by teaching them to aim high and to pursue careers, not merely 9-to-5 jobs, that they are passionate about. Soto, who assists the Mayor's Office of Special Projects and Community Events as a liaison to the Latino community, can't wait to help out her sisters. "When I was an intern, one of the board members told us to open the door and to hold it open for the next generation," she said.

It has not gone unnoticed that the door Soto holds opens leads right into Gracie Mansion.


Asian Institute's New Leader


Joyce O. Moy
JOYCE O. MOY, former executive director of business and community development at LaGuardia Community College, is the new executive director of the University's AsianAmerican/Asian Research Institute. Moy succeeds founding director Thomas Tam, who died this year. "The appointment of executive director Moy assures continued success for the institute. We are pleased that she will be continuing the great work of Dr. Tam," Chancellor Matthew Goldstein said in his announcement. Moy said that in building on the foundation laid by her predecessor, she hopes the institute can provide recommendations on issues facing Asian communities around the world, as well as support and strengthen Asian/American and Asian studies at CUNY.




A Pioneer Remembered

Irving Rosenthal, the founding father of CUNY's journalism curriculum and a mentor to hundreds of students who became local reporters, foreign correspondents, editors and broadcasters, died at age 95 on May 18 at his home in Great Neck. Rosenthal, who graduated from City College with a degree in English in 1933, joined the faculty that same year. After creating two journalism courses in 1936, he concentrated on teaching that subject until 1976, when he retired. He also served as public relations director for the college.


Citizenship Now! Record


Mayor Bloomberg and Allan WernickMayor Bloomberg and Wernick at the Call-In
The recent fifth annual CUNY/NY Daily News Citizenship Now! Immigration Call-In, a weeklong campaign to help local immigrants become U.S. citizens, answered immigration and naturalization questions from more than 15,000 callers—double the number helped in 2006. More than 54,000 people have been helped since the phone-in began in 2004. This year, 365 volunteer counselors staffed 48 phone lines, according to Baruch College professor Allan Wernick, director of the University's Citizenship and Naturalization Project, whose attorneys and paralegals provide free consultations on immigration-related issues to New York City residents year-round.




Mentoring Pays Off

Three city high school students who were mentored by two Queens College physics professors won major honors at the recent Intel International Science & Engineering Fair in Atlanta. All finished on top in the preliminary New York City Science & Engineering Fair earlier this year. Tinya Cheng and Nischay Kumar, who did research in professor Vinod Menon's lab, won a second place award in the overall team category. Erin Zeqja, who worked with professor Igor Kuskovsky, won a third place in the physics category.


Tentative Union Contracts

The University and DC 37, the union representing over 10,000 white collar and blue collar workers, have reached a tentative collective bargaining agreement.

Key provisions include:

  • wage increases of 3.15 percent on the first day of the agreement.
  • 4 percent compounded on the 13th month of the agreement.
  • 4 percent compounded on the 25th month of the agreement.
  • a $50 increase to the Welfare Fund rate.

The tentative agreement is subject to ratification by the membership and adoption by the Board of Trustees. CUNY also reached tentative agreements under the same terms with SEIU Local 300 and IATSE Local 306, as well as with the New York State Nurses Association.