The President's Newsletter

Vol. 2 | Issue 3 | May 2017

Letter from the President

Conrado "Bobby" Gempesaw, Ph.D.

As St. John’s completes its 2016–2017 academic year, I am pleased to share with you some of the University’s accomplishments, as well as initiatives underway to ensure our students achieve success in their personal and professional lives.

In this issue of The President’s Newsletter, you will learn about innovative new academic programs launching in the fall 2017 semester. You will also read about the celebration of the 50th anniversary of the President’s Society, whose inductees represent the best and the brightest of our student body. The achievements of 10 recent graduates are highlighted, with each extolling the value of their St. John’s education. A story on Accepted Student Day highlights the record number of attendees at the event in Queens as well as the strongest showing in years on our Staten Island campus. A wrapup of season two of Sharing Knowledge: Presented by St. John’s University highlights our ongoing presence in the community, providing discussion and insights on educational and social issues.

St. John’s alumni continue to be highly supportive of the University, as evidenced by the establishment of the Lesley and William Collins Business Analytics Lab and the Paul and Carol Evanson Career Services Center in the newly renovated Tobin College of Business building, and the Partners for Student Success Scholarship Initiative. Their generosity and willingness to give back make it possible for St. John’s to continue its mission to provide affordable, quality education.

I am proud of the success we have had in strengthening our institution and in producing graduates who are prepared for the challenges and rewards that the future holds for them. I remain grateful for the support of all members of the St. John’s community—students, faculty, staff, alumni, and friends—who make it possible to achieve our goals.


Bobby Gempesaw signature




Conrado “Bobby” Gempesaw, Ph.D.

    In This Issue

    Re-engage, Reminisce, and Renew: Grand Alumni Homecoming Weekend

    Alumni from all class years are invited to connect with old friends and create new memories at St. John’s University’s Second Annual Grand Alumni Homecoming Weekend (GAHW), on Friday, June 2, and Saturday, June 3, 2017.

    Students walking down Tobin Stairs

    CIT Honors Alum Peter J. Tobin through Scholarship at Tobin College of Business

    On April 17, 2017, the Board of Directors of the financial holding company CIT announced a $30,000 scholarship gift to St. John’s University in the name of outgoing and long-serving CIT Board of Director Peter J. Tobin ’65CBA, ’96HON.

    Paul and Carol Evanson Career Services Center with monitor on the wall

    Major Gifts Provide Funds to Ensure Student Success

    St. John’s University has received more than $5.5 million in gifts and commitments to date as part of three major initiatives established to strengthen the learning environment on campus and fund new endowed student scholarships. 

    Accepted Students at ASD in Carnesecca Arena

    Accepted Student Day Draws Record Number of Visitors

    St. John’s 2017 Accepted Student Day on April 8 recorded the largest turnout in the event’s history.

    Great Lawn Queens Campus

    St. John’s Adds Five New Programs for Fall 2017

    St. John’s University is offering five new academic programs this fall that are designed to prepare students for a constantly evolving job market.

    SCCC and St. John's

    New Articulation Agreement Broadens Horizons for Current and Future St. John's Students

    In an ongoing effort to expand academic opportunities for students throughout the New York area, St. John’s University established a new partnership this semester with Suffolk County Community College (SCCC).

    Outgoing President's Society Members and President Gempesaw

    Celebrating 50 Years of Excellence, President's Society Inducts Outstanding Students

    Anthony F. Markel and Conrado “Bobby” Gempesaw, Ph.D., (seated center) join guests at Dinner.

    Awards Dinners Raise Money to Support Student Success

    The generosity of alumni and friends who share St. John’s commitment to ensuring student success was evident this spring at three celebratory dinners that recognized academic, athletic, and professional excellence while providing financial support for the University’s students.

    Student and poster at Research Month poster session

    Research Month Highlights Student and Faculty Scholarship

    As a junior at St. John’s, Haley Manchon ’17C was on a University service trip to Ecuador when she began studying the ways that public health education can help people to avoid pollution-borne illnesses.

    Sharing Knowledge Presented by St. John's University

    St. John’s Television Series Completes Second Year

    Now in its second season, the cable television series Sharing Knowledge, presented by St. John’s University, continues to bring insightful explorations of secular and religious issues in education and society to audiences throughout the New York metropolitan area.

    Interior of Long Island Graduate Center building

    Long Island Graduate Center to Open in Hauppauge, NY

    In an effort to maintain a strong educational presence on Long Island, St. John’s University has leased 11,000 square feet of space for its new Long Island Graduate Center in Hauppauge, NY. The Suffolk County site replaces St. John’s former Oakdale campus.

    St. Thomas More Church 1600x900

    New Provincial Embodies Vincentian Mission of Service

    Rev. Stephen M. Grozio, C.M., a priest who has embraced St. Vincent de Paul’s legacy by ministering to needy immigrant communities, has been elected Provincial of the Eastern Province of the Congregation of the Mission (Vincentians).

    Queens Campus Gate in Spring

    Board of Governors Welcomes New Members

    Four new members have been appointed to St. John’s University’s Board of Governors, which advises President Conrado “Bobby” Gempesaw, Ph.D., and the Board of Trustees on strategic issues and initiatives that affect students, faculty, and resources.

    Exterior of US Capital Building

    St. John’s AIV Programs Earn Top Career Development Award

    St. John’s University’s Alumni Insider’s View…US Capital program, offered by the Office of Alumni Relations and University Career Services, took first place for Best Practices in Career Development at the Metropolitan New York College Career Planning Officer’s Association’s (MNYCCPOA) annual Spring Meeting and Alva C. Cooper Awards.

    Red Storm baseball pitcher

    Red Storm Athletes Earn National Recognition

    Throughout the fall and spring seasons, St. John’s University athletes have continued to achieve individual and team success nationally and in BIG EAST Conference play.

    St. John's Crest on Gate

    St. John's Programs Earn National Rankings

    Recognized once again for the quality of its academic programs, St. John’s has earned a spot in the latest U.S. News & World Report’s rankings of top graduate programs, with the School of Law and The School of Education receiving high marks from the publication.

    Students throwing caps at commencement

    Distinguished Speakers Address Graduates at St. John’s Commencement Exercises

    As the University concludes its 147th academic year, leaders representing the Church, business, law, and higher education addressed graduating students this spring as featured speakers at the St. John’s undergraduate and graduate Commencement Exercises.

    Enrollment and Career Placement Highlights

    • St. John’s received 27,000 applications for freshman admission, with an anticipated fall 2017 enrollment of 3,000 first-year students representing 49 states and 83 countries.
    • The average SAT score of accepted students for the fall 2017 semester is 1200, with an average high school GPA of 90.
    • The Office of University Career Services reported that 94.3 percent of the 2016 graduating class had secured employment or graduate school acceptances within six months of receiving their St. John’s degrees—up from 94.1 percent in 2015.
    • Graduate programs at St. John’s have more than 2,400 applications for the fall 2017 semester. Of that number, 934 students have been accepted (38 percent).
    • In St. John’s School of Law, J.D. applications for fall 2017 are up 30 percent over last year.
    • In the College of Professional Studies, graduate applications increased by 25 percent over last year (94 versus 75).
    • The total cumulative GPA for new students in the competitive Clinical Psychology doctoral program is 3.7.
    • The Staten Island campus hosted 889 students from 12 local high schools at CareerCon 2017, an event coordinated by the campus’s Career Services team in partnership with the Staten Island Chamber of Commerce and New York City’s Department of Education. Visiting students toured the campus and met with faculty, staff, and administrators while exploring professional opportunities with 50 employers.
    • This spring, more than 1,500 St. John’s students sought internships and full-time employment with nearly 150 employers who participated in a variety of career fairs at the Queens and Staten Island campuses.
    • Twenty-nine employer and alumni guests provided career guidance to St. John’s students at three niche Industry Nights (healthcare, government and nonprofit, and entrepreneurship) hosted by University Career Services. 

    Advancement Highlights

    • Conrado “Bobby” Gempesaw, Ph.D., President of St. John’s, Christian P. Vaupel, Ed.D., Vice President for Advancement and University Relations, and Mark Andrews, Director of Alumni Relations, greeted 34 guests at a pregame alumni reception and Gamewatch at TNT Studios in Atlanta, GA, on February 21.
    • Hosted by Pascal Desroches ‘86CBA, CFO and EVP of Turner Broadcasting, Inc., the event included Red Storm baseball alumnus C.J. Nitkowski and basketball alumnus Ronald Stewart, who played on the 1984–85 Final Four team.
    • More than 270 alumni and friends reunited at a variety of Florida events that Alumni Relations and The McCallen Society hosted in Florida from February 23 to March 12. They included alumni-hosted home gatherings, wine tastings, basketball “game watches,” and the St. Patrick’s Day weekend in Naples. 

    Mission Highlights

    • More than 250 students, faculty, and administrators attended a conference entitled “2020 Vision: End Human Trafficking,” led by the Vincentian Center for Church and Society and its partners, that St. John’s University hosted at the Queens campus on April 1. The event included a poster presentation, educational workshops, performances illustrating the experiences of women who survived human trafficking, and a keynote address by Donna Hubbard, a survivor.
    • As part of St. John’s celebration of the Vincentian charism’s 400th Anniversary, Sr. Patricia Evanick, D.C., Campus Minister for Faith Formation and Leadership, will accompany four students from the Queens and Staten Island campuses to the North American Vincentian Family Gathering event, entitled “Welcoming the Stranger,” in San Antonio, TX, from June 9 to 11.
    • The Office of University Ministry hosted The Most Reverend Octavio Cisneros, D.D., Auxiliary Bishop for the Diocese of Brooklyn, as he celebrated Mass for 21 RCIA students and employees who received their Sacraments of Initiation in St. Thomas More Church at the Queens, NY, campus on April 23.