Conference Tackles Concerns and Prospects for Korean Reunification

Korea Foundation Donates $1 Million

"Our World 2030" Keynote Speaker Urges Action on Greener Economy

Scholar Champions Immigrant Rights

CCNY Honored for Service

Building a Strong, Responsive Public Resource

Welcome to the Spring 2010 edition of the Colin Powell Center newsletter. Our conferences and workshops carefully blend participants from CCNY, community and service groups, and government. We've been especially happy that many of our public events draw networks we've built near CCNY's Harlem home base and across the city. By linking to people from local communities and organizations, we've helped make our work with students more relevant and responsive, and that's helped make CCNY a stronger public resource.

Several weeks ago, as you'll read in this issue, representatives of almost 200 community groups gathered on campus for the Center's New York Life Symposium, "Our World 2030: Preparing a New Generation for a Sustainable Future." That forum began with a keynote address from recent Apollo Alliance President Jerome Ringo. After his talk (which you can hear on our website), students, analysts, and community leaders sat at discussion tables and worked out strategies to develop the human resources necessary to seize the promise of a newer, greener economy. It was the first meeting in an ongoing series that will draw community organizations, policymakers, and the CCNY campus into a sustained discussion about how urban and underserved communities can engage and benefit from this green economy.

Laying the Groundwork for a New Program
On April 23, we held the first event in our new series of Korea-centered programming. "Korean Reunification, Regional Peace and the 2010 Decade" laid the groundwork for our new "Korean Insights and Issues" programming. I was pleased to convene this discussion and to welcome so many active Korea specialists and policymakers to the event. We heard from many of my former colleagues at the State Department, including two former U.S. Ambassadors to South Korea (Ambassador Stephen Bosworth and Ambassador Thomas Hubbard) and Ambassador Lynn Pascoe, currently UN Undersecretary General for Political Affairs. The Korean Consul General, Ambassador Kim Kyungkeun, and the Korean Representative to the United Nations, Ambassador Park In-kook, also delivered remarks, as did top analysts like Dr. Mitchell Reiss and Professor Lee Soo-Jung.

Apart from strong panels convened at an important moment for Korean security, the conference also gathered representatives from the vibrant Korean-American community, people we look forward to working with as our Korea-centered programming moves forward. Good friends at the Korea Foundation are supporting this new programming, and we'll be sharing news about our progress on this front in future newsletters.

Changing the Face of Higher Education
There's more going on at the Center that you'll read about in this issue. Our service-learning program expands each year, and has now supported service-learning classes for almost 1,000 CCNY students. We're also making a bigger impact in the New York metropolitan area via the Center-led New York Metropolitan Area Partnership for Service-Learning (NYMAPS). The partnership now has 14 full college members, but 25 area colleges attended our recent service-learning symposium, and we expect many of them to formally join the network in the coming months. We've also added 10 community organizations to the NYMAPS roster, including the West Harlem Group Assistance and the International Rescue Committee. This consortium and our CCNY-based efforts are fundamentally changing how education works, and helping us better prepare our graduates to interact with the world they will inherit.

These are just a few highlights of our recent Center programming, and I hope they convey at least the flavor of our work. This newsletter contains more news, and you can also keep up with the Powell Center developments and programs via our podcasts, our website, www.ccny.cuny.edu/powell, and our Facebook account. I hope you’ll find time to attend some of the Center’s activities and to meet some of the exceptional students that we support there.

Colin L. Powell

Speakers and panelists addressing security and humanitarian concerns on the Korean Peninsula.
Conference Tackles Security and Humanitarian Concerns on the Korean Peninsula

Ambassador Stephen Bosworth, U.S. Representative for North Korea Policy, Emphasizes a Multilateral Approach during "Korean Reunification, Regional Peace, and the 2010 Decade."

Listen to conference podcasts

On Friday, April 23, General Colin L. Powell, founder and chair of the Colin Powell Center, convened a half-day conference on security and relations between North and South Korea. "Korean Reunification, Regional Peace and the 2010 Decade: The Limits and Prospects of Closer Engagement" took place in midtown Manhattan against the shadow of escalating tensions between North and South Korea. In the days leading up to the conference, a South Korean naval ship sailing near a disputed maritime border with North Korea sank; 104 sailors were on board that vessel. While initial South Korean remarks downplayed the possibility that the DPRK was involved in the incident, the sinking (coupled with a more than one-year-long North Korean boycott of international talks aimed at ending its nuclear weapons program) emphasized how timely the Powell Center discussion was to unfolding world events. The conference provided a forum through which key members of the South Korean and U.S. diplomatic corps could share ideas and analysis of the situation, and also provided a forum for civil society groups and researchers to present their views and research findings at a time when their perspective could influence policy. "We've always intended for our public events and conferences to bring together government officials, academics, and civil society groups to examine policy," noted Center Director Vince Boudreau. "We think this conference was distinctive both in its relationship to unfolding events and in its level of participation."

The conference featured a keynote speech by Ambassador Stephen W. Bosworth, U.S. Special Representative for North Korea Policy, who recently conducted a review of North Korea policy for the Obama administration. It also included remarks by Ambassador Kim Kyungkeun, Consul General of the Republic of Korea in New York, and two panel discussions, the first on social conditions and the second on policy options on the Korean Peninsula. General Powell also spoke, sharing his insights across several decades of diplomatic involvement in the region. He began with the deep attachment he developed for the Korean people when he was a battalion commander stationed on the Peninsula and ended with reflections on the stark contrasts between a developed South Korea and a poor and repressed North Korea, and with how this contrast will likely play out in the politics of the region.

North Korea's economic and social deterioration over the past decades, and the prospect for further decline, framed the discussions. Setting the stage for the policy options discussion, moderator Rajan Menon noted, "There is scarcely a part of our highly globalized world that would avoid the consequences of a conflagration in Northeast Asia. Additionally, there are four nuclear states in the region, which means that other players could be pulled into a confrontation [in] one of the most militarized parts of world. Per square kilometer, it is hard to find a place with more troops and armaments." Menon, an international security specialist, is the incoming Anne and Bernard M. Spitzer Chair in Political Science at City College.

Outlining Strategies for Greater Stability
Throughout the event, speakers and panelists keyed in on strategies to build security and stability on the Korean Peninsula. These measures include the creation of a permanent peace settlement between the two Koreas (something pending since the armistice ended intense Korean War fighting, and efforts to more intensively engage North Korea's neighbors. The need to reactivate the Six Party Talks, whose membership includes North and South Korea, Russia, Japan, China, and the U.S., drew particular attention.
"As we look ahead today, we, of course, face a set of uncertainties in the short term as we await the results of the investigation of the sinking of the South Korean naval vessel," Ambassador Bosworth said. "But beyond that, I think that there is reason to believe that multilateral engagement remains the essential condition for making progress toward greater stability, denuclearization, peace, and prosperity on the Korean Peninsula." More

Korea Foundation Yim Sung-joonPROGRAM UPDATE
Korea Foundation Donates $1 Million

Powell Center to Establish New "Korean Issues and Insights" Program to Launch in 2011.

The Colin Powell Center has received a $1 million grant from the Korea Foundation to establish a program that will focus on policy and service lessons rooted in the Korean experience. The new program, "Korean Issues and Insights," set to launch in 2011, will help introduce students to the rich traditions of the Korean Peninsula and to innovative Korean approaches to some of the world's most pressing policy concerns. Korea's recent experience includes a dynamic democratization process, rapid economic development, leadership positions in the United Nations, and a central role working to resolve some of the world's most important security issues. The Korea Foundation's support will allow the Colin Powell Center to undertake programming around all of these vital issues.

The Korean Issues and Insights program further extends the Center's mission of providing outstanding students with advanced training in public policy, engaging them in compelling national and international issues, and providing opportunities for student travel and study in other countries. It is designed to encourage Center-affiliated students to think seriously about Korean policy experiences and perspectives while simultaneously developing leadership skills and policy expertise.

Looking Beyond U.S. Borders
"Today's world demands that students look outside the U.S. for examples and opportunities," said General Colin Powell. "Korea has gone from authoritarianism to democracy while developing a world-class economy, now the tenth largest in the world. Many students come to college with almost no knowledge of Korean history or culture, and that's a big oversight. This program enables us to send students to Korea to work more closely with experts there and to study Korean history and culture. We'll be looking at important policy questions that Korea and the U.S. have faced together, issues like security and development. We'll also be able to set up service-learning programs in New York that will strengthen CCNY's ties with the Korean-American diaspora. It's a great opportunity and we're excited to begin." More

Jerome Ringo, "Our World 2030"
Keynote Speaker, Galvanizes Crowd

2010 New York Life Symposium Spotlights Ways to Leverage the Green Economy.

Listen to the podcast (21:10)

He was worth waiting for. Jerome Ringo, immediate past president of the Apollo Alliance, delivered a powerful call to action on March 24 in the Great Hall of Shepard Hall at CCNY. Ringo, keynote speaker for the 2010 New York Life Symposium, "Our World 2030: Preparing a New Generation for a Sustainable Future," presented by the Colin Powell Center, virtually rocked the house as he tied together themes of climate change, green jobs, oil independence, and environmental justice. The event, initially scheduled for February 10, had been postponed due to a blizzard.

An environmental pioneer who rose from the ranks of Louisiana oil refinery workers to lead the National Wildlife Federation and then the Apollo Alliance, Ringo stressed that perilous climate change effects now under way demand the rethinking of "Category Five Denial." He also outlined opportunities in the crisis, including the chance to turn around the American economy, to diversify the conservation movement, and to curb the impacts of global warming. He recounted how civil rights battles turned into the Civil Rights Movement, and he established climate change as a similarly galvanizing issue. Climate change, he said, "screams to the involvement of each and everyone of us, regardless of background or what side of the tracks you come from."

To his listeners, Ringo issued a challenge: "In the next decade or two, when a grandchild looks you in the eye and asks, "Why did you let this happen?' if you don't have a reasonable response today, let this conference be your start to developing a real answer, by virtue of your actions not your thoughts, to change this world for the next generation." More

Second Annual Service-Learning Symposium Spreads Commitment Across the Region

Powell Center-led Alliance Connects Classrooms and Community.

For the participants of the second annual service-learning symposium, "Strengthening Service-Learning Connections across New York City," held at Barnard College on March 11, the evening was an opportunity to connect with other professionals who are changing the face of higher education across the region.

The Colin Powell Center-led New York Metro Area Partnership for Service-Learning (NYMAPS) hosted the event, which drew 120 participants and marked the growing momentum of the three-year-old organization. NYMAPS is dedicated to advancing service-learning and civic engagement at area colleges and universities. Service-learning is a teaching method that incorporates community service in course design to enrich the curriculum and the students' experience. Launched in 2007 by the Colin Powell Center (representing City College), New York University, and Marymount College, NYMAPS now comprises 15 members and is growing. Columbia University, Barnard College, and New York Institute of Technology are among this year's new associates.

Finding Innovative Strategies
From a welcome by Dorothy Denberg, dean of Barnard College, to final reflections, the event gave the assembly of committed educators, students, and community partners new strategies for effectively combining public service with academic study. The symposium featured nine workshops on service-learning in various settings and disciplines, including medical school, documentary filmmaking, and at-risk science enrichment. In a session focused on turning semester-long projects into sustainable relationships, presenters Nancy Tag and Lynne Scott-Jackson, professors of Media and Communications Arts at CCNY, described how their students developed advertising and public relations content for the Harlem-based environmental justice organization WEACT, and how a CCNY club now sustains this relationship.

Attendees found themselves not only inspired by the breadth and creativity of the activities, but they were also challenged to consider the effectiveness and sustainability of their own efforts. They were encouraged by Kevin Ferrara, associate dean of the Fu School of Engineering at Columbia, who stressed, "Find a way to provide service with full commitment; get in and stay in, and model this for students." Such suggestions only further energized faculty and nonprofit partners to work together to enrich classrooms and communities. As one presenter later noted, "It was marvelous to have the opportunity to learn from one another, and for our students ... to witness the strength and potential of this work."

Jay-Sheree Allen at her first WEST conferenceSCHOLAR SPOTLIGHT: JAY-SHEREE ALLEN
Helping Teenage Girls Gain Tenacity and Strength

By Flannery Amdahl

Most Friday afternoons, Jay-Sheree Allen, a New York Life fellow at the Center, can be found amid a cluster of fourth- and fifth-grade girls in the library of the Harriet Tubman Learning Center in Harlem. Allen, a psychology and pre-med major, is passionately committed to the mental, spiritual, and physical health of young women. Three years ago, she started an organization dedicated to this cause, entitled Women of Excellence, Strength, and Tenacity (WEST). Through WEST, Allen and her team offer mentoring, community-service opportunities, social events, and other activities.

On Saturday, April 10, Allen hosted WEST's first annual Women's Empowerment Conference at City College. The daylong event drew more than 200 participants and featured Terri Williams, author of Black Pain: It Just Looks Like We're Not Hurting. Throughout the day, women and teenage girls listened to panel presentations and attended workshops on subjects ranging from body image to money management. The conference furthered Allen's goal of expanding and strengthening WEST. Allen recently spoke to the Center about her organization, her goals, and her experiences as a New York Life fellow:

What's behind your passion for empowering young women?
I grew up in Jamaica, and my mom left to work in America when I was 4. This had a really strong impact on me. When I joined her at age 11, I was lucky to have mentors who stepped in to help me adjust to the culture shock and to succeed in my new school. For example, I attended the Science, Technology Entry Program, and the coordinator took me under her wing. I attended her Saturday morning science classes from 7th grade until I graduated from high school, and that inspired my interest in medicine.

I've been blessed with so much, though it was a bit rough at times. I imagine other young women who don't have all that I have had. My experiences have helped me to realize how powerful it is for women to step in and assist younger women. That was my driving force in starting this organization: to provide a support system and resources for young women to turn to. More

Lili Salmern at the offices of Make the Road New YorkSCHOLAR SPOTLIGHT: LILI SALMERON
Advancing Immigrant Labor Rights

Outside the Queens Center Mall late on a blustery afternoon, Lili Salmeron flagged down pedestrians among the homeward-bound crowds. Interning as a community organizer with the Queens-based immigrant rights organization Make the Road New York, Salmeron, a New York Life fellow at the Center, worked with other volunteers to alert the public to the mall's distressing labor practices. Their goal: to raise support for a campaign calling on the mall owners to require tenants to pay a living wage (at least $10 an hour) to their employees, many of whom subsist, and try to sustain families, on minimum wage ($7.25 an hour).

For Salmeron, a senior majoring in political science, the internship is a key facet of her fellowship. Working at the bustling Make the Road offices, Salmeron counsels laborers who face thorny employment issues, raising their political awareness along the way. "I help them see how their issue, like trying to get back pay from a subcontractor, is indicative of a larger social problem," she says. Salmeron also assists at meetings and educates individuals about how they can plug in to the political process in New York City.

Her experience at Make the Road provides an important counterpoint to an earlier Center-sponsored internship. Last summer, Salmeron worked at the Brookings Institution with leading demographer Audrey Singer. There, Salmeron collected census data and analyzed demographic trends around immigrant settlement patterns in the top 100 U.S. metro areas. Immersing herself in both the think-tank world and the advocacy world has given her "a better sense of where I fit in," says Salmeron, who recently shared a bit about her goals and interests:

How have your policy interests evolved?
I've always been interested in immigrant labor rights. Last year, I heard Joshua Bernstein speak. He is head of the Service Employees International Union's (SEIU) Immigrant Affairs Division, and I learned how the International is coordinating efforts to lobby for immigrant rights. That crystallized my interest in unions as a way of advancing rights. Then it became clear that "Justice for Janitors," organized under the SEIU, was a successful campaign, so I'm looking at that as a model for my senior thesis. I'm also interested in why we need living wage laws and how best to implement them. So for my policy brief, I wrote about mandating a living wage for subsidized development in New York City. More

Fighting Atherosclerosis on Two Fronts

Riding the Amtrak up to Albany in March, advocates from the New York Academy of Medicine downplayed their odds of convincing state legislators to pass a tax on sugary beverages. Not so, Chirag Raval, a New York Life graduate fellow at the Center, who joined them in their effort. "I told them, 'the time is right,'" recalls Raval, a high-energy chemical engineer and a Ph.D. candidate in the Integrative Graduate Education Research Traineeship (IGERT), a national interdisciplinary engineering, science, technology and math program, which CCNY and Columbia are undertaking jointly.

For Raval, the trek was a part of a greater journey that has led him to combat cardiovascular risk not only from a technical perspective, but a policy one as well. Beginning as an undergraduate researcher at the University of Delaware, Raval has gradually honed in on the mechanics and prevention of atherosclerosis at the cellular level. Atherosclerosis, the collection, thickening, and calcification of fatty lipids along the walls of the heart and vessels, triggers heart attacks, strokes, and heart disease, and underlies 38 percent of U.S. deaths.

Raval's research centers on a novel protein called aquaporin, which acts selectively in cell walls like a tunnel for individual water molecules. He is investigating the very earliest stages of the disease and aquaporin's role in determining whether lipids have enough time to accumulate on the vessel walls. Understanding the nature of the process and its control could generate new classes of therapuetics, useful before the onset of symptoms such as high blood pressure and high cholesterol. Yet Raval's deepening awareness that "a technical solution is no silver bullet" has led him to lobby in Albany (the bill is still pending) and to a larger fight against obesity. Now he has conceived a new policy solution: calling for a Surgeon General's warning on high-calorie and high-fat junk food. Recently, he shared his evolving thinking on these issues.

What's behind your policy interest?
Cardiovascular risk is what kills us in the long run. I'm looking at the technology of early atherosclerosis, but what we know is good diet and exercise are the first lines of defense. We also know there is a socio-economic factor that leads to this disease. So if you really want to make a change, there has to be a public policy aspect to what you
do. More

president's Honor Roll LogoSERVICE-LEARNING UPDATE
CCNY Named to President's Honor Roll for Service

City College has been named to the 2009 President's Higher Education Honor Roll for Community Service. The efforts of the Colin Powell Center in promoting service at CCNY through its support of service-learning classes, its Engaged Department Initiative, Service-Learning Faculty Fellowships, and Student-Led Initiatives proved to be integral to the College receiving the national recognition.

Placement on the honor roll is based on an institution's commitment to community service and the impact of its efforts in the community, along with the characteristics and size of the college or university. At City College, 252 students took part in 11 service-learning classes in 2009. Another 442 engaged in community service, with more than half of these students dedicating 20 hours or more a week to their efforts. Altogether, students at CCNY devoted 5,280 hours to service. Robert E. Paaswell, CCNY interim president, congratulated the Colin Powell Center and CCNY's faculty and students for their service work. "As a public institution serving a diverse community, community service and civic engagement are integral to our mission," he said. "We are delighted to be recognized by President Obama for what we are doing."

The President's Higher Education Honor Roll is a new initiative of President Obama's administration. Service is a central cause of the administration, and the President places a high priority on supporting and developing the role of higher education institutions, and their students, staff, and faculty, in addressing the nation's most pressing social needs. Additional information regarding the President's Higher Education Community Service Honor Roll can be found at NationalService.gov.

General Powell with students in the Colin Powell Program in Leadership and Public Service

Mission Statement
The Colin Powell Center for Policy Studies at the City College of New York (CCNY) is a nonpartisan educational, training, and research center named for one of CCNY's most distinguished graduates. Established in 1997, the Center's mission is to prepare new generations of publicly engaged leaders from populations previously underrepresented in public service and policy circles. The Center also seeks to build a strong culture of civic engagement at City College and to mobilize campus resources to meet pressing community needs and serve the public good. The Center focuses its efforts in the areas of community and economic development, education, the environment, health care, international development, and global security issues.


Advisory Council  
Madeleine K. Albright
Former Secretary of State

James A. Baker, III
Former Secretary of State

Tom Brokaw
Special Correspondent, NBC

Robert Catell
AERTC, Stony Brook University

Fulvio Dobrich
President and CEO
Galileo Asset Management, LLC

Harold M. Evans
Former President and Publisher
Random House

Carly Fiorina
Former Chairman and CEO

Vartan Gregorian
Carnegie Corporation of New York  

Richard N. Haass
Council on Foreign Relations

Vernon E. Jordan, Jr.
Senior Managing Director
Lazard Freres and Co., LLC

Henry A. Kissinger
Former Secretary of State

Lois Pope
LIFE Foundation

Colin L. Powell (Chair) 
Former Secretary of State

Linda Powell

Lisa Quiroz
Senior Vice President
Time Warner, Inc.

Jack Rudin
May & Samuel Rudin Family Foundation

Stephen Schwarzman
Chairman & CEO
The Blackstone Group

Sy Sternberg
Retired Chairman & CEO
New York Life Insurance Company

Linda Kaplan Thaler
CEO and Chief Creative Officer
The Kaplan Thaler Group, Ltd.

Barbara Walters
ABC News  

Elie Wiesel

Robert E. Paaswell 
Interim President
The City College of New York 

Charles B. Wang

Fareed Zakaria
Editor, Newsweek International 


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