He’ll AlwAys HAve PAris —
is a fan of Benjamin Franklin, quoting the Founding Father
in an online prole. In June, Onwu will follow inFranklin’s footsteps and head to Paris for a ve-
week HumanityInternational Fel-lowship, followedby an extendedcommunity-serviceinternship.Onwu, a nativeof Nigeria who grewup in the Bronx,is graduating witha B.S. in PoliticalScience, with triple minors in History, English andPhilosophy. His glittering academic résumé at JohnJay includes membership in national honor societ-ies and a 3.66 GPA. He was the 2010 winner of the Alumni Association Endowed Scholarship.Now, with graduation upon him, he’s ready togive back to his school, and is encouraging hisfellow graduates to join him. Along with other Stu-dent Council leaders, Onwu launched the Legacy2011 project, through which the members of theClass of 2011 are being asked to give generouslyto John Jay as they make their transition fromstudents to alumni. “When I was running for Presi-dent, I promised to push for community outreachand involvement,” he said. “The Legacy 2011
project is part of fullling that promise.”
The next big academic step for Onwu will be lawschool. In time, he said, he hopes to have a futureas a lawmaker in Nigeria.
notHing to sneeze At —
To say thatJohn Jay senior
is a person of varied interests would be an understatement. The21-year-old Honors Program student and ForensicScience majorcould not havecome up with twomore different top-ics for his forensicscience researchproject and hisHonors thesis.Geliebter’sresearch projecttook him to Texaslast summer toexamine pollen.
“Just like everyone has their own ngerprints,
every region has its own pollen count,” he said.Finding a certain ratio of pollen grains on a spe-
cic individual, Geliebter explained, could help law
enforcement determine where a person was killedor where a terrorist had been trained. “You’re try-
ing to match up that body with a specic location.”
Geliebter will next be attending the College
of Environmental Science and Forestry (ESF) in
Syracuse, NY, on an scholarship that will cover histuition and provide a stipend in exchange for someteaching and research. His goal is to obtain a doc-torate in ecology from ESF.For his Honors thesis, Geliebter turned awayfrom forensic science to examine why rap musicseems to be criticized more harshly for its violentlyrics than other genres of music such as heavymetal. He asked students to listen to equally vio-lent lyrics from both types of music, and found thatrap got a bad rap because its lyrics were easier tounderstand. “People who heard rap recalled lyricsmuch better and they picked up on the themes,”said Geliebter. “People who listened to heavymetal are just horrendous at recalling lyrics.”
eyewitness to History —
, a CUNY BA student majoring in Conict
Resolution and International Crime, Justice andDevelopment, minces no words in her online
herself as a “student,activist, communityorganizer and revolu-tionary.”When protestsbegan in Cairo’s Tah-rir Square in January,Basuni was there torally against Egypt’sauthoritarian regimeand watch historyunfold. “I’ll never forget the sense of solidarity andunity among my fellow Egyptians and how theyexpressed their desire for freedom and democ-racy,” she said.Basuni, who has been selected as this year’swinner of the College’s Howard Mann Humanitar-ian Award, is a self-described “interdisciplinarystudent living an interdisciplinary life.” She is aScholar/Athlete who plays on John Jay’s women’ssoccer team and a former president of the Col-lege’s award-winning National Model United Na-tions Team. She served on the working group thathelp develop and launch the spring 2011 initiative“Mosques, Veils and Madrassas,” a series of cam-pus events aimed at enhancing the understanding of Islam.On tap for Basuni is another return to Egypt,
where she plans to work with a nonprot orga
-nization helping Sudanese and Iraqi refugees.She has applied for a position with the U.S. StateDepartment, and later on plans to attend gradu-ate school, “hopefully in a joint JD/PhD programwhere I can study immigration law and humanrights law,” she said.
educating for justice
@ John Jay
is published by the
Ofce of Marketing and Development John Jay College of Criminal Justice899 Tenth Avenue, New York, NY 10019 www.jjay.cuny.eduEditor: Peter Dodenhoff Submissions should be faxed or e-mailed to:Ofce of Communicationsfax: 212.237.8642e-mail: email@example.com
Snapshots of selected members of the Class of 2011.
, asenior in the CUNY BA program at John Jay, is
holding off on plans for graduate school. The rst
item on her agenda, after having won a prestigiousFulbright Foreign Scholarship, will be to return toher native Hungary in September for research inthe area of youth who are at risk of homelessnessor criminal activity.Szendro, who has majored in Criminal andSocial Reform under the mentorship of JohnJay Professor Staci Strobl, is no stranger to so-cially consciousactivism. Whilein high school,she traveled toNew Orleans toparticipate in thedemolition and res-toration of homesdamaged by Hur-ricane Katrina. Shespent the summerbetween highschool and collegein Nicaragua, building a house as part of a culturalexchange program.“Nicaragua was an eye-opening experience,”
said Szendro. “It was condence-boosting and
inspiring. I’ve always had a strong feeling forpeople who are being taken advantage of, and astrong interest in the justice system.” In January,she organized and led another trip to Nicaragua aspart of the research for her senior thesis.Szendro already has a solid background inprisoner reentry efforts and alternatives to incar-
MAPPing tHe future —
has her educational future all mapped out. First,the Justice Studies major will get her master’s de-gree from Michigan State University, and then shewill return to John Jay for her doctorate. She will beon full scholarship for both programs.“I just feel really lucky because I get to stay andwork on the project I have been working on withDr. [Joshua] Freilich and continue my interest indomestic terrorism,” said Duran. “And it’s a com-pletely free education!”Duran, a McNair Scholar with a 3.7 GPA, de-scribed her work with Freilich as “a cross compari-son of extremist groups that operate both in and
out of prison,” specically the far-right and the
black separatist groups. Her senior thesis exploresthe paradox of punishment and how it directlyrelates to prison radicalization of extremist groupsas well as groups such as the Aryan Brotherhood
and the Ku Klux Klan. “Instead of reecting on
what they’ve done, they are learning new motivesto commit more crimes in the future,” she said.
go west, young MAn —
All prospectivelaw school students should have the problems of
, a Justice Studies major who hasbeen accepted to Cornell Law School, the Univer-sity of Texas School of Law and UC Berkeley BoaltHall School of Law, which offered him a full ride.“I think that might be the place I’m going to beheaded,” said the 21-year-old Student Council VicePresident, who is graduating with a 3.66 GPA andwill receive the Scholarship and Service Award,John Jay’s second highest graduation honor.The 2010 winner of the prestigious SteamboatScholarship, Garvey’s expenses at Berkeley willbe covered by two scholarships that will provide acombined $49,000 a year. But that’s not the onlyreason Garvey is going to Berkeley. “I’m interestedin family law,” he said. “Berkeley has one of thebest pro bono programs in the country.”“I can’t say for certain I want to do family law,but I’ve interned at places to see what I like, whatI don’t like, and try to learn from there instead of just starting when I get to law school,” he said.
oPPortunity KnoCKs —
While teach-ing criminal justice at Bronx Community Collegewas not in
’s post-graduationplans, it was the kind of opportunity that the Hon-ors student and Justice Scholar was not aboutto turn down. What is even more remarkable isthat Maiello landed the job while still a studentherself. “I got lucky because I was working thereas a Criminal JusticeFellow,” she said. “Itfell on my plate and Igrabbed it.”Maiello will gradu-ate in June with bach-elor’s and master’sdegrees in criminal justice. The 22-year-old sports a GPA of 3.798 and is co-cap-tain of the College’s women’s swimming team.Maiello’s plans include taking the test for theSuffolk County, NY, Police Department. Meanwhile,she’ll spend the next year teaching at BCC. “Iwasn’t planning on doing that,” she said. “At thesame time, I’ll be looking into a police job.”Playing intercollegiate sports at a DivisionIII school takes a special commitment, withno athletic scholarships available to providemotivation and support. At a commuter campuslike John Jay, with the added factor of nodormitories, the necessary commitment getstaken to another level. How, then, to describethe 12 John Jay seniors who have been studentathletes for four years?“They love their sport and they love the schoolthey represent,” said Director of Athletics DanPalumbo. “They have given us so much over the
course of four years, excelling on the eld and
in the classroom, even while wrestling with busylives, family responsibilities and more.”Six sports will say goodbye to these very specialathletes at the 2011 commencement. SaidPalumbo: “We’re very proud of all our studentathletes, and we as a department will always behere for them as they move on to the next phaseof their lives.”The departing four-year athletes include severalwho are Scholar/Athletes, having achieved GPAs of at least 3.2 on top of their athletic achievements.Two — men’s soccer goalkeeper Kemar Brownand softball catcher Christina Perez — have beenScholar/Athletes for their entire John Jay careers.Many have also posted extensive records of schoolservice, most notably as representatives on theStudent Athlete Advisory Committee.This year’s class includes:
Baljit (Bita) Kahlon (also softball).
Jessica Lirio (also softball).
Kemar Brown; Steven Castillo;Ray Sanicola; Christian Valdez.
Angela Lam; Christina Perez.
Saying Goodbye to Highly Dedicated Athletes
midlife decision to return to college to nish his
education, and is he ever glad he did.“I’ve had the most wonderful years at JohnJay,” said Rosario, a Political Science major. “Iwas involved in manydifferent events, orga-nizations, committeesand the Student Coun-cil, and because of my participation, theJohn Jay community
has beneted from
my knowledge andmaturity.”Serving as a PeerAmbassador gave Rosario the opportunity tospeak in classes to fellow students. As a SEEKstudent, he talked to students about how to man-age their time while in college and achieve suc-cess. “Corporations and other potential employersdon’t necessarily want to know your GPA,” he said.“They want to know what you’ve achieved in col-lege, and see how you present yourself.”Rosario manages his own busy schedule well
enough to nd time for extracurricular activities as
well as academic excellence. “John Jay has givenme more strength to achieve the highest accom-plishments in my life,” he said.
grAy MAtter —
For most people, becoming a pediatric neurosurgeon would be a lofty enoughaspiration, but it is just a part of what forensic sci-ence major
wants todo with his life. The 21-year-old says he would alsolike to open his own research laboratory where hecould study the “complex and ambiguous” work-ings of the brain.Piszczatowski, who will graduate
, is currently preparing a manuscript basedon his original research into the mechanisms of blood clotting for submission to the medical jour-nal
. “Ultimately, I plan on getting an MD/PhD degree,” said Piszczatowski. “For the shortterm, I plan on taking a small amount of time off to travel to Europe and see the world while alsotrying to look at how hospitals and the medical
eld function in various countries.”
Piszczatowski has lined up an interview atMount Sinai Medical School for an internship at itsGenome Sequencing laboratory. “Hopefully, thiswill bring me more experience as a scientist, moreexposure to the clinical world, and one step closerto admission to an MD/PhD program,” he said.
tHinK globAlly —
A world view of criminal justice seems to be in
’s blood.She was raised in six states and two countries. Atage 16, while on a trip to Bolivia, she discovered
a crime called “human trafcking,” which sparked
her interest in International Criminal Justice. Whenit came time to select a college, she chose JohnJay and was accepted into the Honors Program.Her college career has been similarly inter-national. She has been a member of John Jay’sUnited Nations Student Association for three yearsand helped to bring back numerous awards atthe National Model United Nations conferences.Her Honors thesis, which will be published in the
Asia Pacic Journal of Police and Criminal Jus
, focused on differences between Hindu andMuslim honor killings in Pakistan and India.Shim also knows how to “talk the talk.” She par-ticipated in three study-abroad programs in Spainto learn Spanish, then mastered Korean, French,Arabic and German. She has traveled to 22 coun-tries, and interned twice in Australia.Up next for Shim? Not surprisingly, she’llbe heading overseas once again, having beenaccepted for graduate study in Intelligence andInternational Security at King’s College London,England in the fall.ceration. “I’m also very interested in preventivework with young people and diverting them fromthe justice system,” she said. “The Fulbright schol-arship is an incredible opportunity to do that andcontinue working for social change.”