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In This Issue

  • Meet our New Co-Director
  • Faculty Spotlight
  • Faculty Teaching in Correctional Environments
  • Brain and Language
  • The Influence of Culture on End-of-Life Decisions
  • Cue Conference
  • Professional Development Day
  • Event Calendar
  • Conferences

CTL Mission

In keeping with Hostos tradition, the Center for Teaching and Learning promotes excellence in teaching and learning with innovative pedagogies and state-of-the-art technologies by fostering interdisciplinary and cross-divisional collaborations.

Meet Our New Co-Director! Prof. Cynthia Jones

Prof. JonesMany summers ago, I sat next to Magda Vasillov in an NEH Institute designed by the American Social History Project (ASHP); it was a month-long journey of navigating the Web and incorporating the tools of technology in the curriculum. Magda patiently mentored me as we considered the integration of technology in my developmental reading and writing courses and her Arts and Civilization course. Read More

Faculty Spotlight

Congrats to Dr. Yoel Rodriguez on the Fulbright Award!

Prof. RodriguezHostos Community College Professor Yoel Rodríguez has been granted a prestigious 2016-17 U.S. Fulbright Scholar Award to the Slovak Republic. The Fulbright award along with his sabbatical leave will provide Professor Rodriguez with the opportunity to work at the Institute of Experimental Pharmacology and Toxicology of the Slovak Academy of Sciences in Bratislava, Slovak Republic. Professor Rodriguez will be collaborating with Dr. Magdalena Majekova, who is an expert in Biophysics and Medicinal Chemistry. Through this partnership, and by bringing his expertise in Computational Molecular Biology, Professor Rodríguez believes that they will be able to make important contributions regarding worldwide human health issues related to cardiovascular and heart disease. He feels truly humbled, honored and excited by this opportunity.

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Faculty Teaching in Correctional Environments


The late Maxine Greene once said, “in many respects, teaching and learning are matters of breaking through barriers.” These barriers come in myriad forms for those who were born into poverty and dysfunctional families. Consequently, many of these individuals lose their compass and end up in prison. By offering the incarcerated a post-secondary education many of these pre-existing barriers are removed upon re-entry to society. A significant amount of empirical evidence documents that inmates who pursue associate and bachelor’s degrees while incarcerated tend to become law-abiding citizens significantly more after their release from prison than inmates who did not advance their education while incarcerated. Furthermore, cost-effective analyses have shown that it is less expensive to educate inmates than to reincarcerate them. It is therefore important that the college education of inmates be central to the topic of lowering recidivism.

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Brain and Language: The Neural Basis of Monolinguals’ Discourse Comprehension


Fifty years ago, brain research on language was confined to investigating individuals with brain damage. Today, thanks to technological advances, neuroscientists are using non-invasive methods to examine healthy brain activity of individuals processing language. The plasticity of the human brain, and its potential for learning, is an important discovery of the twentieth century.
Language consists of major subsystems that include sounds, word forms, meanings, structures, and uses in different contexts. Language skills such as listening and reading enable us to comprehend oral and written discourse, whereas speaking and writing enable us to produce oral and written discourse. Linguistic subsystems and language skills do not function in isolation or in a linear and static manner in the brain, but they work in parallel, highly dynamic, interactive, and changeable ways (Friederici, 2012; Kroll & De Groot, 2005; Ullman, 2005).

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 Planning for End-of-Life Is Not a Death Sentence: The Influence of Culture on End-of-Life Decisions

Prof. FlemisterEunice Flemister
Aging and Health Studies
Program Coordinator
Education Dept

My Fellowship Leave in the Fall of 2015 was in search of answers to the following questions: “How do we introduce the End-of-Life Conversation to Minority Communities?” and “How do we Negotiate Cross-Cultural Issues at the End-of-Life?”

After attending a New York State Conference on Aging workshop on End-of-Life Planning, I observed that there was little or no emphasis on how culture impacts, End-of-Life decisions. This particular workshop was filled to capacity. Experts from the field shared their knowledge. Social workers spoke about the challenges of talking to family members who had no idea that their loved ones were terminal. Physicians defended themselves saying, patients were told but were in denial. Nurses said, they were not the ones responsible to break the devastating news to the patients or their families. Debates ensued; the legal ramifications of the process was challenged; startling data was shared; research studies were quoted; and yet somehow in the maze of information there was a void when it came to the inclusion of cultural sensitivity, cultural awareness, even cultural humility in this dialogue. Read More

CUE Conference Success!

CTL played a fundamental role in hosting The 12th Annual Coordinated Undergraduate Education (CUE) Conference, “Walk the Talk: Inspiring Action on the Concourse and Beyond,” which was held at Hostos Community College on May 13, 2016. More than 300 participants attended this event. The conference included an opening session, keynote speaker Dr. Jose Antonio Bowen, Fireside Chats, and over 60 presentations. The Fireside Chats provided some insight into the character and resilience of our CUNY community. The positive reviews and comments by attendees reflected the amount of hard work and unity the staff and volunteers had and put into the success of this event!

CUE Conference CUE Conference

Professional Development Day 2016

On May 31, 2016, CTL successfully hosted the sixth annual Professional Development Day (aka CTL SPA DAY). This event was held at the Edith Macy Conference Center in Briarcliff Manor, New York. This year was the first time that the event was held off campus. SPA DAY with over 60 participants, was a great opportunity to share and learn with each other in an inviting and collegial setting. Additionally, the day included fun activities and lots of networking.

This year’s theme, “A Place for Everybody,” focused on encouraging diverse conversations to facilitate a welcoming, nurturing, and inclusive environment for our students and colleagues. Four think-tank discussions offered participants an opportunity to learn about and discuss student research with faculty, Scholarship of Teaching and Learning (SoTL), online learning, and service learning. Prof. Andrew London started the afternoon with a fun game to break the ice. To finish the day, keynote speaker Prof. Cynthia Jones did a great job of connecting and putting into perspective all of the conversations that happened throughout the day to envision a place for everybody.

The think-tank topics were “Initiatives to Promote Student Success: Capstone Seminar and Student Research with Faculty” , “The Scholarship of Teaching and Learning Group: Evoking, Provoking and Invoking”, “Growing Our Innovative Community at Hostos”, and “Class Without Walls”.


Yeily Peña Vicente
Anna Austenfeld
Itzel Ortega Mendez
Jacqueline DiSanto
Emmanuel Rosario
Lemar Francis
Duplicating Center: Mercedes Valdez, Dian Beckett and David Floyd

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