On February 21, more than 725 students turned out to explore local, national, and global job and internship opportunities at St. John’s annual Spring Career Fair. Held in Taffner Field House on the Queens, NY, campus, the career fair drew 77 employers representing a broad range of industries, such as finance and business, fashion, the nonprofit sector, city and state government, law enforcement, internet and software, healthcare, journalism and publishing, and sports.
According to Paulette Gonzalez, Executive Director, University Career Services, the career fair is a remarkable opportunity to develop potential business relationships in a more personal way. “As technology becomes more prevalent in recruiting, career fairs present students with a critically important opportunity to connect with employers face to face,” she said.
Raymond Cruze, Recruitment Liaison for the New York City Department of Citywide Administrative Services, returns every year to St. John’s career fairs because he finds talented students to fill vacancies within his department. “St. John’s University has a very high standard,” Mr. Cruze said. “Many students here express interest in making a social impact.”
Noted Haitian-American professor, anthropologist, poet, feminist, performance artist, and activist Gina Athena Ulysse, Ph.D., delivered the keynote address at the 14th Annual Caribbean Writer’s Series in The Little Theatre on the Queens, NY, campus in early February. Born in Pétion-Ville, Haiti, a suburb of Port-au-Prince, Dr. Ulysse emigrated to the United States when she was 11 years old. A professor of anthropology at Wesleyan University in Middletown, CT, she has authored numerous essays, articles, and books focusing on myriad issues in her beloved homeland. “My work is about bringing attention to a history that is difficult to look at, precisely because it is difficult,” said Dr. Ulysse in her address, which included passages that were shared in Haitian Creole. “Yet, I believe part of the work we need to do is to learn how to sit with the uncomfortable.”
St. John’s University’s College of Professional Studies introduced a new campus event in February geared toward journalism students. The Journalist Series offers students a unique opportunity to interface with industry professionals such as reporters, editors, anchors, videographers, and other leaders in the field.
The inaugural event featured WCBS-TV News Anchor Mary Calvi, a nine-time Emmy Award winner widely recognized for coverage of the two terrorist attacks on the World Trade Center and the 2009 emergency landing of a commercial airliner on the Hudson River. Ms. Calvi strongly encouraged her audience to delve into topics they know little to nothing about, a situation journalists routinely face in the course of their day-to-day job responsibilities.
“Go into territory that may not be in your comfort zone,” she said. “If you are preparing to enter the field, it will help you to branch out and learn something absolutely new.”
She also spoke of the process behind writing her first-ever novel, Dear George, Dear Mary: A Novel of George Washington’s First Love (St. Martin’s Press), which was released this year. “That was a great opportunity because I knew nothing about the publishing industry and I knew nothing about writing a novel,” she said. “It was really exciting to do something different.”
St. Patrick’s Day Parade
Celebrating the Catholic faith of Ireland, Irish heritage, and the global contributions of Irish culture, more than 125 members of the St. John’s community marched in the 258th annual celebration of the New York City St. Patrick’s Day Parade. This diverse contingent of students—including members of the Irish Society and the Red Storm Reserve Officers’ Training Corps color guard—dedicated alumni, administrators, faculty, and staff, marched up Fifth Avenue past an estimated crowd of more than two million spectators.
At a formal ceremony held on St. John’s Queens, NY, campus, an articulation agreement between the University and LaGuardia Community College was signed that creates a seamless process for students seeking to transfer from the College to the University.
“We are united by a shared mission—and that is the success of our students,” said Simon G. Møller, Ph.D., Interim Provost and Vice President for Academic Affairs at St. John’s.
The new agreement signed on March 22 between the two Queens-based institutions provides students with various associate-to-bachelor degree programs that will accept prior credits earned. Programs include biology, cyber security, hospitality management, legal studies, mass communication, speech-language pathology and audiology, and select business programs offered through The Peter J. Tobin College of Business.
GOLD Networking Event
St. John’s University seeks to keep close ties with its community of more than 184,000 alumni through reunions and special events, always cognizant that groups from different eras have their own diverse needs. For young alumni, the University created the Graduates of the Last Decade (GOLD) Alumni Association, which offers a variety of events specific to their interests, including social, educational, financial, and career-enrichment activities.
On March 5, more than 60 young alumni came together on St. John’s Manhattan, NY, campus for the GOLD’s “Professional Networking Series: How to Break into a New Industry,” which brought together seasoned alumni panelists to discuss career transitions and best practices in searching for new career opportunities.
Blessing of the Couples
Love was in the air at St. John’s University as alumni couples returned to alma mater as part of the annual Blessing of the Couples celebration. The event, held on February 16 in St. Thomas More Church on the Queens, NY, campus, and always timed near Valentine’s Day, is an opportunity for St. John’s to honor special couples who have remained faithful not only to each other, but to the Vincentian values they learned at the University. More than 130 people attended the special Mass, award ceremony, and reception.