Category Archives: Education

Chased from the Classroom, Locked out the Prison

“When you came to Lovdjieff’s classes, you came to learn. If you betrayed other motives, ‘Get out of here this minute!’—without malice but without equivocation. He was a magnet, an institution. His classes were works of art. He made ancient history contemporary by evoking the total environment—intellectual, social, political, economic—of an era. He breathed life into the shattered ruins of the past. Students sat entranced while The Christ performed, his silver-rimmed glasses reflecting the light in eye-twinkling flashes…he was drawn to the student who seemed impossible to teach—old men who had been illiterate all their lives and set in their ways. Lovdjeiff didn’t believe that anyone or anything in the universe was ‘set in its ways.’ Those students who were intelligent and quickest to learn he seemed reluctant to bother with, almost as if to say, pointing at the illiterates and speaking to the bright ones…he returned my essay—ungraded. There were instead spots on it which I realized to be his tears.” Read More


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Lyrically Speaking

Seven years ago, I was a mild mannered chubby kid from Brooklyn who physically sat in silence in the classroom, but academically dominated the honor roll. The only time I could talk myself into public speaking was when my GPA depended on it. A matter of fact, even one-on-one conversations with new people were rather daunting.

Seven days ago, I was presenting to a group of outgoing and strong-minded high school students from the Urban League who are the same age I was when I could not even fathom talking into a microphone. In high school, I had a phobia of being noticed; now I proudly and anxiously hop on any opportunity to speak in front of as large a group as possible to share ideas, thoughts, jokes and entertainment.

I am not the same Jerome from seven years ago — but I do not merely attribute that to my physical transformation. Between high school and today, I fell in love with an expression of art that is often muddied by the perpetrators and frowned upon by critics that have made no attempt to comprehend its true essence. Hip hop has given me a way out of my shell and a path to the top of a podium. Now when I hear Lupe Fiasco’s “hip hop has saved my life,” it all makes sense…Read More

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Time to Do More than Just Thinking About Brain Drain

As Published in the Democrat and Chronicle’s Young Professional Blog

You leave home for college, study hard, develop skills, graduate, and then take those skills and education to a bigger market – that is the story of Rochester’s brain drain. But does it have to be that way?

Last May, I graduated from the University of Rochester with a concentration in religion and a minor in business. As a born and bred Brooklynite, I figured that it would be poor judgment for me to stick around Rochester while there are a plethora of opportunities in NYC.

But I was wrong. After flopping around like a fish on deck for the past 4-months, I am moving back to Rochester to work at Foodlinks as an Americorps’ Vista. I always had a hunch that I would find myself back in the old Genesee, but I wasn’t quite sure how or when.

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Just graduated, unemployed and bored? Nonsense!

So you have just come to terms with the fact that being tossed into our current job market is hardly as fun as tossing your cap. Perhaps you have spent hours on end scrolling up and down Career Builder and Idealist in hopes that employers will someday be as enthusiastic as Uncle Sam looks on the posters that say “We Want You.”

Now that you don’t have to fall asleep in public spaces with a Rockstar Energy Drink in your left hand and a box of Triscuits in your right as your drool seeps through the space bar, you have no idea what to do with yourself. Even worse, after fours years of hustle-and-bustle, jumping from club meetings to special events, you have the nerve to say that you’re “bored.”

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Diversity Panel Raises Interesting Concerns of UR Alumni

Over 100 years ago, the class of 1891 to be exact, Charles Augustus Thompson graduated from the University of Rochester and eventually became a highly respected Presbyterian Minister. But Thompson’s graduation also had historical significance: he was the first African American graduate of the University of Rochester.

120 years later, I heard his name ring throughout the weekend for the first time in my four years as an undergrad at the University. Over the past three days, 1973 alumnus and longtime UR Trustees Board member Francis L. Price made sure that Thompson’s name was heard loud and clear during our 2nd annual Diversity Conference.

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Juvenile Delinquency, or a Delinquent System

Is it the system or the players? The policymakers or the stakeholders? Of course, this isn’t a new sentiment; it is the cliché stance that we have all taken in a paper or two for our high school government or social studies class. But no matter how platitude the comment may seem, we cannot deny its relevance to the current juvenile delinquency system that has crippled children, parents, taxpayers and our communities alike. That is why I will be hosting “Juvenile Delinquency, or a Delinquent System” out of the Interfaith Chapel this Thursday at 7:30 p.m.

For the past few months, the juvenile prison system has become a hot topic for NY politicians. Mayor Bloomberg was the first to point out how wasteful the current system is for taxpayers. As it currently stands, it costs roughly $350,000/bed each year to cover medical, operational, and patrol shift costs for NY centers (the national average is $43,000/bed). Meanwhile, 10 of the 25 facilities are less than half full, including one center that Bloomberg and Al Sharpton visited in Brooklyn that only had one inmate.

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UR and RIT create joint degree

As published in the Campus Times

UR and the Rochester Institute of Technology have decided to join forces with the formation of a new joint master degree in medical informatics.

The new degree brings together the strengths of the UR School of Medicine and Dentistry and RIT’s B. Thomas Golisano College of Computing and Information Sciences. Both schools are nationally recognized for their extensive research in medicine and computer science, respectively.

“The new joint degree program between UR and RIT represents the best kind of collaboration,” provost and executive vice president Ralph Kuncl said in a UR Medical Center press release. “It is a meeting of the minds between two programs with complementary missions in an area which itself represents a blend of information science, computer science and health care.”

The University and RIT have been discussing the joint degree for the past five years.

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