The College of New Rochelle Launches Yonkers Site
September 24, 2015
Dignitaries including Yonkers Mayor Mike Spano and New York State Senator Andrea Stewart-Cousins joined The College of New Rochelle President Judith Huntington under sunny skies at the launch of the College’s Yonkers site at the Schoolhouse Terrace Development on Ashburton Avenue. The event, held September 23, celebrated the arrival of the first college degree program offered in downtown Yonkers.
The Schoolhouse Terrace Development, a collaboration between The Community Builders, Inc. and the Municipal Housing Authority for the City of Yonkers, includes residential housing, parking, and community facilities. The College of New Rochelle was sought out by The Community Builders as an educational partner due to its decades of experience educating adult students through its School of New Resources.
President Huntington noted that the goal of The Community Builders is to create and sustain strong communities. “That mission is one that truly resonates for us at The College of New Rochelle,” she said, “because of our long history of going into neighborhoods underserved by education and making a difference in the lives of the residents of those communities.”
Susan McCann, vice president for development for The Community Builders, noted that a public elementary school, P.S. 6, stood on the site for many years. Pointing to the stone structure above the building’s entrance, she said, “We were able to preserve the arch from that school and I think it is so fitting that in preserving the history of the arch, we’re not just about the past, but we’re about education and a decent life for the people who live in this community.”
Currently, the site features the School of New Resources Pre-College Academic Program (PCAP), which prepares students to pass the new, more rigorous High School Equivalency (HSE) exam, allowing them to go on to pursue their college degrees. This fall, the School’s nationally recognized bachelor’s degree program in liberal arts — specifically geared toward the needs of adult learners — will also be offered. Students take the final Capstone course at the main New Rochelle Campus. In his remarks, Spano noted that through these programs, “The College of New Rochelle is contributing to the economic renaissance currently underway in the City of Yonkers.”
Several PCAP students attended the ceremony and spoke in praise of the program. Andrea Harrison explained that health reasons had prevented her from earning her high school diploma. “My daughter often encouraged me to get my diploma,” she said. “So when I heard about this program, I inquired about it and registered. Our instructor helps us explore areas we didn’t know about. Our class isn’t a group of individuals; we’re a team.”
City Councilman Michael Sabatino, City Councilman Chris Johnson, and New York State Assemblyman Gary Pretlow also spoke in support of the College’s new initiative. “When people think of Yonkers,” said Johnson, “they think of the first district; they think of Warburton Avenue and the Riverfront. And now, they’ll think about The College of New Rochelle.”
President Huntington expressed the hope that this venture is the beginning of a long and successful partnership between The College of New Rochelle, The Community Builders, and the City of Yonkers. “We are delighted to have this opportunity to expand our educational offerings to benefit the residents of Yonkers and to be a part of the revitalization of the downtown area,” she said. “We look forward to contributing to the academic and professional development of students who will work in the area and beyond.”