Press Release: CUNY Baccalaureate Program 2006 Commencement

Time and Place:  Monday, June 5, 10 am in the Great Hall at The Cooper Union, 7 East 7th Street at Third Avenue


Keynote speaker:  Sheryl McCarthy. A Newsday columnist since 1989, McCarthy won the Meyer Berger Award from Columbia University for her coverage of New York City, and has received a Harvard Nieman Fellowship, among other awards. She now teaches at the Columbia School of Journalism in addition to writing for Newsday. Her thoughtful and provocative commentary covers a wide range of issues—including race and gender, social policies towards the poor, politics, and foreign policy.  She has also been a correspondent for ABC-TV and reporter with the New York Daily News.

Faculty speaker:  Professor Kenneth Sherrill, Chair of the Department of Political Science at Hunter College

Student speaker:  Scherrie Williams, BA, Africana and Caribbean Area Studies

Administered by The Graduate Center, the CUNY Baccalaureate Program (CUNY BA/BS Program) is a small, University-wide individualized degree program intended for self-directed, academically strong students who have well-formulated academic and career goals.  Most are working adults, many of whom are raising families; 80% are over 25 years old (49% are over 35 years old); and a significant number are returning to school, often after a hiatus of anywhere from 5 to 30 years.  The Program has an enrollment of 700 students and has over 5,000 alumni. The program generates many graduates with compelling life stories, a few of which follow.
CUNY Baccalaureate Program
Selected 2006 Graduate Profiles
Antoinette Dorch
Law and Graphics for Litigation concentration
Antoinette Dorch traces her love of art and her aspiration to use her talent professionally to the praise she received for her drawings in primary school. But, as the oldest of seven siblings, she had many family responsibilities and could not go to college until the late 1970s. When she did, she attended New York City Technical College, studying Art and Advertising and earning an Associate’s degreee.

In the 1980s, she was contracted by the Chief of Neurology at the Long Island College Hospital and asked to do some medical illustrations for a book entitled AIDS in the Nervous System. Her challenge was to draw the AIDS virus, but it was so early in the epidemic there were no references. Working closely with hospital physicians, she developed a schematic drawing that is considered accurate today and is still in use.
In 1997, she started working for a medical-legal referral service; her specialty was preparing graphics for litigation. She created medical illustrations which were used as demonstrative evidence in court cases and also recruited experts for court testimony, researched medical information to evaluate the merit of proposed cases, and did actual case management.
Dorch came to the CUNY BA/BS Program with the goal of integrating law and art. She completed two internships: one as a legal assistant with former NYC Corrections Commissioner Jacqueline McMickens, Esq. (which led to a part-time job) and one at the Kings County D.A.’s Office in the graphics department where she worked with paralegals, attorneys and police officers to prepare demonstrative evidence for criminal cases. She plans to go to law school.

Shawn Guin
Music/Health Care Reform concentration
Sometimes known as the “singing doctor,” Shawn Guin is a classical singer, a countertenor, who plans to go to medical school intending to become a physician in primary care and emergency medicine. Thus he designed dual areas of concentration: Music and Health Care Reform.  
On the music side, Guin received several substantial scholarships from the Hunter Music Department. He performed in Baroque opera scenes by Cavalli and Monteverdi at Hunter’s Lang Recital Hall and he is a member of the Hunter College Collegium Musicum. On the health care side, Guin participated in the Native Americans into Medicine summer program at the University of Minnesota Medical School, a six-week program focusing on math, biochemistry, and health care in diverse communities. While still a student, he was accepted to the Patient Advocacy Volunteer Emergency Research Program at Bellevue Hospital where he acted as a patient-family liaison between the Emergency Room waiting and treatment areas, assisting ER staff with patient care and acting as an advocate for patients in clinical studies. He also worked in the summer of 2005 with Rekindling Reform; this organization’s goal is to promote health care reform with the ultimate objective of a national health insurance for all Americans.
Guin is now studying for the entrance exams for medical school.
Chi Kuen Kwok         
Theatre Production/Psychology concentration
Chi Kuen (Jimmy) Kwok, who comes from Hong Kong, worked for ten years there as a dubbing artist, providing Cantonese voice-overs for English films, utilizing his writing and translation skills for such famous actors as Jim Carrey, Brad Pitt, Leonardo DiCaprio and Mike Myers. At the same time, he was a performer for Zuni Production and Edward Lam Dance Theater, giving over 100 performances in Hong Kong, Beijing, Macau, London, and Okinawa, in the native tongue of each city. Then, he founded the production company “Jimmy’s Style,” where he worked as the director, writer and performer, using the stage to educate the community about social issues that had no other forum in Hong Kong, such as AIDS, homosexuality, women’s rights, and the former colony’s identity crisis. He achieved success and recognition in Hong Kong and other parts of Asia but wanted to play to a broader, more sophisticated international audience, so he came to New York to pursue a higher education.           
Kwok completed two areas of concentration in the CUNY BA Program, one in Theater Production and one in Psychology. In the spring 2004 semester, Kwok wrote “The more psychology classes I take, the more I believe there is a strong connection between theater and psychology. When studying child psychology and social psychology, I learned not only the psychologies of children and human interactions, I also found most of the theories behind those psychologies could be used as themes for plays.” Kwok has been accepted to the MSW programs at Hunter, Columbia and NYU.

Submitted on: MAY 1, 2006

Category: Press Room