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April 2015 Archives

MTC has been in business for over 15 years and operates as an educational and therapeutic agency contracted with NYS/NYC DOE. MTC has been a NYS approved provider for the SEIT program since 2005. MTC is located in the Bay Ridge area of Brooklyn, NY.

Because of the expansion of our business and increasing work load, we're looking for NYS licensed supervisors to professionally support our teachers who are teaching preschoolers with special needs all over NYC. The supervisory work will be mostly in the office but the supervisor will be expected to visit their teachers in the field, at minimum, once a year and then as needed. The schedule will be flexible in order to accomodate the candidates' availability.

Interested parties should email their resumes to mtcinfo@mtcnyc.com or fax to (718) 732-2682.

Homage to Dr. Polemeni





February 1, 1935 - May 22, 2014

Former Vice President and Dean, Touro College Division of Graduate Studies

To inaugurate the


TUESDAY, MAY 12, 2015 • 5:30 PM


Dr. Anthony J. Polemeni was a beloved member of the senior leadership of Touro College. He was an outstanding educator and a leader in the field for nearly four decades. During his tenure, Touro's Graduate School of Education became one of the largest in New York State. Join us as we pay tribute to his outstanding legacy.

TO RSVP, PLEASE EMAIL COMMUNITY@TOURO.EDU OR CALL 212-463-0400, EXT. 5203.  Reception following program.

A Tribute Book of fond memories of Dr. Polemeni is being created. Please send your stories, thoughts and memories of Dr. Polemeni to: community@touro.edu

On April 17 Mercy College President Tim Hall will be inaugurated as the College's twelfth president. The Inauguration will mark the official beginning of Hall's presidency, and celebrate the time he has already spent in office.

On joining and leading Mercy College, Hall said: "From the start I was attracted to the Mercy College mission of "providing motivated students the opportunity to transform their lives through higher education." Now I am committed to it. I believe a college education is about more than accumulating credits, or even preparing for a good job, it's about transforming a life."

Since arriving on campus Hall has been working to enhance the College's tradition of a "high touch" educational experience for students, an experience in which they are showered with individual attention. Hall often quotes John Henry Newman who described a university as: "An alma mater, knowing her children one by one, not a foundry, or a mint, or a treadmill."

Hall said: "I want to make sure that Mercy continues the tradition of knowing her students "one by one." I also want to ensure that we create conditions that support the success of our students. It isn't enough to get them to college - we need to get them through college and to graduation day."

By Merri Rosenberg

There is no shortage of memoirs about the complicated, fraught and often tragic experiences of European Jews from the middle of the 20th century. For most of us here in the United States, and specifically in the New York metropolitan area, that ongoing wave of Eastern European migration formed and continues to inform the culture and fabric not only of Jewish life here, but New York itself.

Less common, however, is a sense of what happened to our Sephardic cousins, especially those who lived in Middle Eastern Arab lands. There is the brilliant and compelling work by Lucette Lagnado and Andre Aciman, of course, but Ashkenazi dominance mostly holds sway.

A welcome addition to offering another look at Jewish diversity comes in this   self-published memoir by Lucienne Carasso.

She grew up in Alexandria, Egypt, during a relatively privileged moment for the city's Jewish community--at least for a while--surrounded by a large, extended family of aunts, uncles and cousin. As Carasso explains, "I decided to write my memoirs to capture the history of my family's sojourn in the land of Egypt. Like the ancient Hebrews, our sojourn was ended by the exodus of an entire community....I also felt it important to try to put my family's experience in the context of Egypt's political history," a task that perhaps took on greater urgency given recent events in Egypt.

Her family's century-long experience in the cultured, vibrant, supremely cosmopolitan city of Alexandria ended in November 1956, during the Suez Canal crisis, when her father was arrested by Gamal Abdel Nasser's government. That traumatic experience shattered what the author writes was "an ideal childhood," filled with strolls along the beautiful Mediterranean beaches, games, parties, family dinners and holiday celebrations. Carasso also evokes the specific traditions of Egyptian Judaism, and the Ladino customs and sayings that defined her universe.  

"The world of my childhood is a lost one that in all probability will never be recreated," admits Carasso. Thanks to her painstaking depiction of that vanished world, readers can immerse themselves in that evocative, exotic society.

Dale Lewis: Onward and Upward


By Joan Baum, Ph.D.

 When Dale Lewis says that the mantra that's guided his life's work in music education is teach with love, you can believe it because that passion has been on remarkable display for the 32 years he's been inaugurating, enhancing and expanding arts education programs for children and teachers at one of the most celebrated summer arts day camps in the country, the Usdan Center for the Creative and Performing Arts, in Wheatley Heights, Long Island.  But after this summer, the esteemed director will be stepping down, leaving an extraordinary legacy of innovative curricular achievement and facilities expansion on the camp's 200 woodland acres. He'll be taking his skills in fundraising and collaboration to the new ArtsReach Fund of the Long Island Community Foundation, seeing the move as a time for Usdan to address new needs and giving himself a new opportunity to "start and define" arts outreach primarily for talented kids in need so that they will be able to go from high school to college or conservatories and maybe think about becoming arts teachers. Hardly severing ties with Usdan, however, which will always have his heart, Lewis will still participate in its Leadership Council and perhaps find himself working collegially with former colleagues as he pursues new challenges. 

 The ArtsReach Fund is a division of the Long Island Community Foundation, a non profit based in Melville, itself a division of The New York Community Trust, "one of the nation's oldest and largest community foundations" which is devoted to connecting donors with charitable organizations and encouraging the addressing of regional needs. For Lewis, no need could be greater than encouraging young people to appreciate the arts by way of having inspirational teachers.  He has always held that "all children deserve access to great teaching" and that "study in the arts enriches the spirit and leads to the arts as a companion for life." The Usdan mission, he points out, is to "provide opportunities for children [of any race, color, and national or ethnic origin] to develop artistic skills, regardless of their level of talent." Interest is primary. The mission at LICF will be arts specific and will focus on raising funds and partnering with funding agencies to support smaller, more intimate organizations and extend the circle of grants. In some cases, Lewis notes, smaller organizations may be led by admired artists who would prefer not to have to be enmeshed in administrative activities. At LICF Lewis will be working with local public school districts, some of whose supervisors he already knows. He says that people don't generally realize that many musically talented high school youngsters come from families that cannot afford to send their children even to auditions and not take advantage of private lessons that would prepare kids for auditions and make them competitive. 

A former Suzuki teacher, Lewis believes in introducing young children - but not too young - to experiences that emphasize "movement, singing and fun," and, of course, engaging parents.  He takes a similar humane and moderating line on Common Core content and skills and technological teaching aids, seeing the common goal in the arts as inculcating learning that will generate independent, creative youngsters who truly "love" what they do. Lewis came to the arts early in his life, encouraged by his mother, a pianist and singer, who took him to the Leonard Bernstein Young People's Concerts. He fell in love with cello, making his performance debut at Carnegie Recital Hall at the age of twelve  and attended Scarsdale High School which had (and has) a fine music program. From there he went to Oberlin College Conservatory of Music, studying cello and conducting, and from 1969-1976 was the cellist of the Alberg Trio.  He started at Usdan as Assistant Director and then in 1983, became Director. Among numerous prestigious appointments, his work with young people stands out. He founded the Center for Chamber Music in Greenwich, CT, an arts education program for children and adults, and taught at Rye Country Day and the College of New Rochelle.  In 1976 he was appointed Music Director and Conductor of the Westchester Junior Orchestra and led the group for 18 years, winning many national awards from education and music organizations.  


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