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January 2014 Archives

Save the Date!

10 Lessons from New York City Schools

A Conversation

between Eric Nadelstern

and Jacqueline Ancess

Wednesday, March 5th, 2014, 6‐8 PM

Teachers College, Columbia University

120th Street between Broadway and Amsterdam

Grace Dodge Hall, Room 179

Come join us for a lively and illuminating conversation about New York City's public

schools between TC Professor and former Deputy Chancellor Eric Nadelstern and NCREST

Director Jacqueline Ancess. They'll discuss NYC's educational successes and failures, the

Bloomberg agenda and its impact, the Common Core roll out, privatization, charters,

assessment, teacher quality, and what future direction lies ahead for our schools. These

two individuals with nearly a century of expertise between them will also offer words of

wisdom and caution for the de Blasio administration!

A Q&A and reception will follow the event.

Eric Nadelstern is Professor of Practice in Educational Leadership at Teachers College, Columbia

University and the former Deputy Chancellor of the Division of School Support and Instruction for the NYC DOE

Jacqueline Ancess is Co‐Director of NCREST (National Center for Restructuring Education, Schools and

Teaching) at Teachers College, Columbia University and founding principal of Manhattan East

Visit www.tcpress.com for program updates. To read more about Prof. Nadelstern's book,

please visit: http://store.tcpress.com/0807754498.shtml

For inquiries please contact Emily Renwick at emily.renwick@tc.edu.

I am constantly in search of a new adventure, so much so that I braved the East Coast snowstorm, withstood constant flight delays, and swapped the 60-degree San Francisco weather for D.C.'s 9 degrees to participate in a PLEN's seminar.

I am a junior majoring in Neuroscience & Behavior at Barnard College with a passion for broadcasting and communications. Recently, I reached a stage where I increasingly grew uncertain about what I should do with a degree in the sciences. One of the most important takeaways from this seminar is to embrace uncertainties and less traveled paths. I learned that there is a wide spectrum of career opportunities besides becoming a doctor.

Each day, I gained new perspectives on leadership and the intersection of science and policy from incredible women from the government, non-profit, and private sectors. Through site visits to the White House, Capitol Hill, and National Institutes of Health, I was exposed to a new area where science, technology, health and policy integrate to affect a greater population. I was eager to hear from women role models in the health-policymaking profession while gaining an understanding of the challenges associated with succeeding in this field. One common theme I noticed across the speakers was that nobody had a straight path, even if it appeared so on a biography description.

For example, Dr. Jacqueline Corrigan-Curay. She wears several leadership hats at the NIH as an Acting Director of the Office of Biotechnology Activities and the Office of Science Policy. She initially went to law school, followed by receiving a medical degree in her thirties. She now manages activities in the Biotechnology Assessment program, the Biosafety Program and the Biosecurity program while contributing to implementing science policy. There was also Danielle Carnival, Ph.D. She initially thought of going to medical school and was in the interview process when she decided to follow a different path in the science world. She is currently the Senior Policy Advisor at the White House Office of Science and Technology Policy (I want to be her!). None of these incredible women thought that they will be performing the jobs they are in today. Of course there were challenges and obstacles along the way like any journey called Life, but the moral of the story is to have an open mind and get comfortable with the uncomfortable. 

One of my most memorable encounter at this seminar was with Jeff Meer at the Public Health Institute (he is the one who recruited Angelina Jolie to join the United Nations!). An amicable and accomplished man, Mr. Meer carried cultural awareness and global health knowledge that was not only impressive but also empowering. I learned a great deal about noncommunicable diseases, which killed two-thirds of the world population in 2010, and how the solution to this issue can be as simple as executing a healthy lifestyle. As someone who has not missed a single day of workout since 1st grade and who eats nothing but healthy food, I grew excited as I found a global health issue that I am interested in.

The pivotable moment came when Mr. Meer asked, "What do you see yourself doing in 5 years?" Each of my colleagues went around to state their passions and aspirations, and predicted where they will stand in 2019. When it was my turn, I started out by sharing my passions for public health and broadcasting. Then it all came together: I want to become a medical/ health correspondent (like CNN's Dr. Sanjay Gupta and NBC's Dr. Nancy Snyderman) playing a role in educating the public about noncommunicable diseases and building a system that keeps people healthy through effective communication. Although it may take more than 5 years to get to my dream job, I was thrilled to consolidate my passions for public health and communications at the PHI. 

I am so glad to have kicked off 2014 by connecting and networking not only with current women leaders in D.C., but also emerging leaders in science policy (also known as my peers). The PLEN seminar provided me with a comprehensive career options in science and health policy and strengthened my negotiation, communications, and leadership skills. Every day of the seminar stretched me in all directions (not to mention overcoming the freezing weather on the day we visited the White House while having to pass through three securities) and I am both excited and overwhelmed by the all the options and possibilities in science that are available. I hope that I can use my skills and newly acquired knowledge about science policy to make a difference in this world.

I strongly encourage all college women interested in health policy, government, law, and/or non-profit to participate in a PLEN seminar. It is truly a transformative experience and will inspire you to implement a change.

Hye-Jin Yun at Capitol Hill.jpgHye-Jin Yun is an Athena Scholar and a junior at Barnard College at Columbia University.

By Sybil Maimin

The venerable National Academy Museum, founded in 1825, is currently aglow with vivid color and beauty thanks to a wonderful exhibition, "See It Loud: Seven Post-War American Painters," that showcases seven free-spirited artists who worked in the years following World War II. Bucking expectations, Leland Bell, Paul Georges, Paul Resika, Neil Welliver, Albert Kresch, Stanley Lewis, and Peter Heinemann refused to ally themselves solely with one or the other of the two major competing art movements--Abstract Expressionism and Representation. Ironically, they were considered rebels because they sought a middle ground, looking for a synthesis between the two opposing schools. Abstract Expressionism, as represented by a group of young New York artists including Mark Rothko, Willem de Kooning, and Jackson Pollock (The New York School), sought to replace representation of objects on canvas with a focus on color, space, and spontaneity. The artists in the show began their careers under the powerful influence of the new movement and initially painted in that style. Several studied with Abstract Expressionism's premier teachers, Josef Albers and Hans Hofmann. But, the influence of great European masters from earlier in the century as well as the more distant past, such as Matisse, Balthus, Giacometti, and Bonnard, as well as Titian, Canaletto, Corot, and Manet, remained with them. The results, seen in the exhibit, are paintings that draw upon the two movements in varying ways. The works may tell a story, look to nature, create movement, work with planes, and create mood and atmosphere, but also feature fields of rich color playing against each other, mere suggestions of objects, thick lines, and large scale.

Paul Resika uses lush colors and simple shapes. "August" (2007) is a soft, dreamlike evocation of a beach with a sunbather, a hat, a boat, and a tree. A series, he did, that features simple shapes, such as a reference to the moon (a circle) or a sail (a triangle), floating on a rich, almost electric, field of color is a masterful blend of the two schools. Stanley Lewis is quoted as saying, "You have to learn what abstraction is in order to understand what painting is." He draws and paints directly from nature in great detail, creating relief-like surfaces on special paper which he layers, roughs up, and covers with thick applications of paint.  His subject matter--suburban houses and their natural settings--is evident in titles such as "Backyard, DC, Fall" (1995), "West Side of House (with Detailed Shingles" (2001-03), and "Two Houses in Leeds" (2004). Neil Welliver, who lived a hermit-like life on the Maine coast uses wide brush strokes and pockets of subdued color to capture the stillness and majesty of the scenes around him. He said, "My painting is very closely related to the way I live. I live in the woods . . . When my paintings are 'finished' I have no interest in them at all. . . They are, in fact, tracks in the snow behind me." Jewel-like hues dominate the intimate landscapes of Albert Kresch. Sky and land are in balance, and colors flow, glow, change, contrast with their neighbors, and create unimaginably lush settings. People, action, and stories are seen, with spare detail, in the work of Leland Bell, and Peter Heinemann lets the viewer get to know him through a series of self-portraits. Paul Georges is represented by monumental canvases depicting war scenes in Greek mythology as well as outsize paintings of large, brightly colored flowers--in the foregrounds of landscapes and in vases on tables.

The artists in "See It Loud" speak out with bold colors, individual styles, and determination to embrace and synthesize two opposing schools of art practice. The National Academy show demonstrates that blending two approaches is possible.

The National Academy Museum is at 5 East 89th Street. "See It Loud" runs through January 26.





Usdan Center for the Creative and Performing Arts (www.usdan.com), the nationally acclaimed summer arts day camp, announces several new programs for its 2014, 47th season: Musical Theater Dance and Musical Theater Audition Workshop, both for grades 7-12; and Sewing and Fashion Production, for grades 4-12.

The Center, whose alumni include Natalie Portman, Mariah Carey and Jane Monheit, will hold the next of its Open Houses for the 2014 season on Sunday, January 26th from 11AM to 2PM. In addition to the Center's frequent Open House dates, Usdan also offers individual weekend guided tours available by appointment. Weekday self-guided walks are also available, on the Center's magnificent 200-acre woodland campus at 185 Colonial Springs Road, Wheatley Heights (Huntington), New York 11798 (for directions to the Center, visit www.usdan.com).

There is a $100 "Early Bird" enrollment discount for registration through January 31, 2014.

For an appointment, call 631-643-7900. (Visitors must be 21 years of age or accompanied by a parent.) Families who cannot attend an Open House may make individual appointments for visits on weekends or weekdays throughout the Fall and Winter.

Sewing and Fashion Design is an introductory courses focused on sewing basics and beginning design. Students learn how to create fashion from concept to construction, including hand and machine sewing and basic design. The course is an expansion of Usdan's popular Fashion Design course, in which students model their creations at the end of the season, made up by professional makeup artists and photographed by Usdan photography students.

Theater Dance, for grades 7-12 is a 3 or 4-week course (students may attend for either), in the Theater Department, in which students learn dance routines from popular and classic musicals. Choreography may be drawn from the works of Bob Fosse, Jerome Robbins, Susan Strohman and others. The program culminates in a studio workshop. A minimum of one year of previous dance training is required.

The Audition Workshop, open to Theater majors only, is a 7-week course including training for the acting and singing components of a musical theater audition. It also instructs students in choosing material that highlights the strength of each student.

Usdan Center offers more than 40 programs in music, dance, theater, visual arts, creative writing, nature and ecology and chess, annually hosting more than 1,600 students from towns throughout the Tri-State New York area. No audition is needed for most courses, and transportation is provided in air- conditioned buses that depart from most New York-area neighborhoods. One-third of Usdan's students receive scholarship assistance based on family need. Video from many of Usdan's programs and special events, may now be viewed on the Center's website, http://www.usdan.com as well as on YouTube. Also, families can check out Usdan's Facebook site, where additional information and late-breaking news is featured.

Usdan Center for the Creative and Performing Arts, whose alumni include actors Natalie Portman and Olivia Thirlby and singers Jane Monheit and Mariah Carey, has introduced the arts to more than 60,000 Tri-State Area children since its founding in 1968. The Center is open to all young people from age 6 to 18. Although the mission of the Center is for every child to establish a relationship with the arts, the unique stimulation of the Center has caused many to go on to arts careers. Alumni include members of Broadway shows and major music, theater, and dance ensembles such as the Boston Pops and the New York City Ballet. In addition to its regular programs, Usdan offers special opportunities for advanced high school- age performing and visual artists. These include Music Staff Internships, a Summer Ballet Intensive. Usdan Center is an agency of the UJA-Federation of New York.

Usdan's 47th season begins June 30, 2014 and runs through August 15. For more information, write to info@usdan.com, Call (212) 772-6060 or (631) 643-7900, or visit www.usdan.com

Contact: Reva Cooper, (718) 965-0486

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