Research Centers and Institutes
Brookdale Center on Healthy Aging and Longevity
2180 3rd Ave @ 119th Street, NYC 8th Floor
New York, NY 10035
Executive Director: Jean Callahan, JD, MSW
Brookdale Center on Healthy Aging and Longevity at Hunter College advances successful aging and longevity through research, education, and evaluation of evidence-based models of practice and policy. In July 2011, Brookdale Center moved into its new home in East Harlem, NYC at the corner of Third Avenue and 119th Street. Brookdale Center shares this new state-of-the-art campus with both the Silberman School of Social Work at Hunter College (formerly the Hunter College School of Social Work) and the CUNY School of Public Health at Hunter College (formerly the Hunter School of Public Health). Brookdale Center takes a leading role in the development of evidence based “best practices” to advance the health and wellbeing of a new generation. Brookdale is breaking new ground in aging services by connecting and integrating the applied fields of gerontology with health policy. Brookdale Center serves as a critical bridge between gerontological education, research, policy, practice and advocacy, and is recognized nationally today as a major center of excellence.
Center for Occupational and Environmental Health
Co-Directors: Andrew Burgie
The Hunter College Center for Occupational and Environmental Health was established in 1986 to improve workplace and environmental health by assisting worker and community efforts to understand and ameliorate hazardous conditions. The center conducts training classes to assist labor unions, government agencies and other groups to strengthen their capacity to respond to workplace hazards; assists communities in addressing urban environmental concerns; and sponsors graduate student internships in occupational and environmental health.
Current areas of interest and study include asbestos, lead poisoning, hazardous waste and materials, asthma, air pollution, ergonomics and public health policy. The Center for Occupational and Environmental Health is funded by federal and state grants, labor unions and private foundations.
The Center for Study of Gene Structure and Function
315 Hunter North; http://genecenter.hunter.cuny.edu/
The Center for Study of Gene Structure and Function (Gene Center) was established in 1985. It is a consortium comprised of 53 research faculty who are biologists, chemists, psychologists, physicists as well as a bio-anthropologist and an urban public health scientist. The Gene Center now has a designated cohort of 19 biomedical researchers who focus on increasing the translational/clinical potential of their research in cancer, mental health, and community engagement to help reduce health disparities. The remaining members pursue broader biomedical research goals. The Gene Center is a founding partner with the Clinical and Translational Science Center, a multi-institutional research consortium headquartered at Weill Cornell Medical College. The Gene Center is supported by a major grant from the Research Centers in Minority Institutions Program of the National Institute on Minority Health and Health Disparities (formerly from the National Center for Research Resources), an agency of the National Institutes of Health. The City University of New York and Hunter College provide institutional support to the Gene Center.
The Gene Center primarily supports research in the following three core areas:
Cancer, including detection and therapeutics innovation in treatment for prostate and breast cancers
Neurobiology/behavior, including addiction and neuroprotection as well as diagnosis of stress disorders
Disease Prevention using telehealth e-platforms to serve the underserved
State-of-the-art core research facilities include:
Digital Bioimaging with Confocal Microscopy
Nuclear Magnetic Resonance
The Gene Center contributes to research advances in diseases that disproportionately affect minority populations - such as stroke, drug addiction, cancer and AIDS. Gene Center scientists have received distinguished awards such as the Ameritec Prize for Paralysis Research and the Presidential Early Career Award for Scientists and Engineers for their outstanding research in these areas. A major goal is to develop outstanding faculty, postdoctoral fellows, and summer undergraduate research fellows from underrepresented groups.
The Center for Puerto Rican Studies
(Centro de Estudios Puertorriqueños)
Administrative Office: 1429 Hunter East; (212) 772-5688
Director: Edwin Meléndez, Ph.D.
Centro Library and Archives
The Louis and Samuel J. Silberman School of Social Work
2180 Third Avenue and 119th Street, Room 121; (212) 396-7876
Associate Director of the Library and Archives: Alberto Hernández Banuchi
The Centro de Estudios Puertorriqueños/Center for Puerto Rican Studies (Centro) is a university-based research institute whose mission consists of two components. One is to collect, preserve and provide access to archival and library resources documenting the history and culture of Puerto Ricans. The other is to produce, facilitate and disseminate interdisciplinary research about the diasporic experiences of Puerto Ricans and to link this scholarly inquiry to social action and policy debates. To complement these core activities, Centro sponsors a year round program of educational and cultural activities.
History Founded in 1973 by a coalition of faculty, students and community leaders, Centro seeks to achieve its mission by working closely with a network of education, research, archival, advocacy and community-based partners. Centro has been housed at Hunter College since 1983; however, it is a CUNY-wide research center. Centro staff guide and mentor Latino and other students, assist and advise community organizations and other research institutions and serve on local, national and international committees concerned with issues of social, economic, educational and cultural policy. In addition, CUNY faculty and staff with interests in Puerto Rican and Latino studies are invited to affiliate with Centro, where they utilize its extensive resources. Centro has been a founding member of the Inter-University Program for Latino Research (IUPLR) since 1989. The IUPLR, currently composed of 23 affiliate centers, is the most extensive consortium of Latino research centers in the United States.
Research Program As a university-based Puerto Rican research center, Centro staff and researchers are interested in a comprehensive understanding of the Puerto Rican diasporic experience in the U.S. and in relevant socioeconomic and historical aspects regarding Puerto Rico. Given its history and role within CUNY, the Centro is particularly interested in New York’s Puerto Rican and ethnic communities. The following are research areas of current interest and attention in the Centro: history and political economy, migration, race, class, gender and sexuality, education, community development, political and human rights, public policy and political participation and cultural and literary studies. This list reflects the current combination of staff strengths and expertise, as well as the academic, community and policy networks the Centro has developed. Given the changing needs in Puerto Rican communities, in academia and in the Centro’s staff, the areas of current interest are reviewed periodically.
The Centro Research Exchange program promotes institutional, faculty and student intellectual and scientific exchange with stateside academic institutions and in Puerto Rico and the Caribbean. Since its inception the program has focused on strengthening institutional links between the City University of New York and stateside higher education and research institutions through academic and cultural exchanges and scholarly collaboration. Centro has sponsored numerous resident scholars, including theses and dissertation, post-doctoral and junior faculty fellows. The Centro Research Exchange Program has facilitated research and other academic/cultural activities for more than three hundred faculty and students.
Library and Archives The Centro Library and Archives is devoted to collecting, preserving and providing access to resources documenting the history and culture of Puerto Ricans. Now in its new facilities at the Lois V. and Samuel J. Silberman Building in East Harlem, the collections include books, newspapers, periodicals, audio and video tapes, manuscripts, photographs, prints and recorded music. The Library and Archives provides services and programs to the scholarly community as well as the general public. It facilitates access to its holdings through mail and telephone services, City University’s online public catalog CUNY+, participation in national computerized databases and through the publication of finding aids. The Llibrary and Archives promote the study of Puerto Rican history and culture through exhibitions and other public programs.
The Library and Archives collects, preserves and makes available for research unique primary materials that document the history and culture of the Puerto Rican diaspora with a concentration on New York City. The holdings include personal papers, records of organizations and institutions, photographic collections, broadsides, programs and ephemera. Among the collections are the records of civil rights organizations, the papers of activists, writers, artists, scholars, educators and elected officials. A highlight of the holdings is the extensive records of the offices of the Government of Puerto Rico in the U.S. Special features of the Archives include its photographic holdings, art prints/posters by artists from New York and Puerto Rico and sound recordings of Puerto Rican popular music. Finding aids and guides are available for processed collections and are online on the Centro Web site.
Publications A major accomplishment in Centro Publications is the launch of our academic press in 2013 with the publication of two books: The Stories That I Read to the Children: The Life and Writing of Pura Belpré, The Legendary Storyteller, Children’s Author, and New York Public Librarian, by Lisa Sánchez González, and the memoirs of Gilberto Gerena Valentín, Soy Gilberto Gerena Valentín: memorias de un puertorriqueño en Nueva York. (While this first edition of the Gerena Valentín book is in Spanish, we are in the process of having it translated so as to publish it in English.) Both books are currently available for purchase directly from our office or ordered online on our website.
Through Centro Publications, our mission is to expand the products that we are producing and, through wider variety and broader distribution of our publications, reach and influence a larger audience concerned with the Puerto Rican diaspora and its place in the context of society at large. Centro plans to produce readers, coffee-table books, art reproductions and other publications on the Puerto Rican experience.
The CENTRO Journal, founded in 1987, is one of the Centro’s most important links to the public. A multidisciplinary, bilingual, refereed publication that welcomes scholarly articles in the humanities and the social and natural sciences, as well as interpretive essays, interviews, fiction, reviews and art,the Journal reflects developments in the field of Puerto Rican studies. Although primarily an academic publication directed at disseminating the body of scholarship on Puerto Rico and Puerto Ricans, the Journal retains elements of its earlier incarnation, publishing work in a variety of formats. The journal encourages a dialogue that compares Puerto Ricans with other ethnic groups, particularly other Latinos and African Americans. The Journal is available by subscription directly from our office or it may be ordered via our website.
Voices is the e-magazine of the Center for Puerto Rican Studies. A web-based platform at http://centropr.hunter.cuny.edu/voices-e-magazinefront, Voices’ goal is to disseminate scholarly contributions about the Puerto Rican experiences in the United States to a general public. It encourages interactions among academics, our community and the general public.
Education Centro’s education programs seek to develop curricula and pedagogies that motivate Hunter, CUNY and other students, as well as teachers, to become involved in Puerto Rican Studies, provide the necessary supports for success, and encourage a sense of service toward others. Centro has created several educational products to support historical preservation. To help promote these products, Centro has produced three brochures describing the exhibition materials available to groups and schools. The brochures describe the exhibits, films and posters, which are primarily to be used as instructional material. But they also can be used in semi-public spaces by local organizations to increase their visibility in their own communities. The brochures include:
Centro Traveling Exhibits
This brochure is an eight pager describing nine eye-opening stand-alone exhibits that can add interest to local events. The exhibits are particularly appropriate for use by schools and Latino organizations as stand-alone exhibitions or as an engine for a roundtable or panel discussion. The displays, which are easy to set up, highlight stateside Puerto Ricans who have made a difference in the arts, government, religion and politics or to illuminate historic events or movements. The Centro Traveling Exhibits include: The Legacy of Pentecostal Minister Reverend Manuel Tomás Sanchez, a pioneer Pentecostal pastor; Carlos Arroyo: Mr. Cha Cha Taps, the life of this noted dancer; Orgullo in Organizing: Puerto Rican Workers; Their History and Legacy, 1930 -2010, traces Puerto Rican participation in organized labor; Luis Muñoz Marín: The New York Years, 1927-1928, recognizes Muñoz Marín’s work when living in the United States. Also included are two forthcoming exhibits, one on A Revolt through Letters: Clemente Soto Vélez, that explores the life of this controversial leader and the other on The National Puerto Rican Day Parade, which looks into its roots and amazing growth.
Centro Film Festival
A four pager describing six documentaries that schools and organizations can combine into a create-your-own film festival or use individually to enhance other programming. They include: Pura Belpré: Storyteller about the folklorist and librarian; The Legacy of Frank Bonilla who was Centro’s founder; Martorell: De Aqui, Pa’lla on artist Antonio Martorell and his exhibit for the New-York Historical Society; A Revolt through Letters: Clemente Soto Vélez explores the life of this controversial leader; and María Dominquez, Education and Enrichment through Community Murals, which is part of Centro’s Arts in Education Outreach, looks at Dominquez’s work on a community mural with students from East Harlem. The last is Plena Is Work, Plena Is Song, an examination of this important musical tradition.
Puerto Rican Heritage Poster Series
This colorfully illustrated brochure describes each of eight posters documenting the long history of the Puerto Rican migration, from its cultural roots through contemporary times. This series is especially suited for in-school use and can easily integrated into the curriculum.
Part I. covers Puerto Rican cultural roots from 1200 to the late 1700s and the early migration the mainland, 1815 to 1897. Part II. covers the migration from 1898 to the 1930s; Part III. takes us through the Great Migrations (1940s to 1960s); Parts IV. looks into stateside struggle for equality and recognition; and Part V. covers education struggles, institution building and “new traditions.” Finally, there are three posters using maps to illustrate demographic migration patterns and population centers.
Conferences and Seminars
As part of our educational initiatives, Centro regularly sponsors conferences and seminars that highlight the Puerto Rican experience. Our recent conferences and seminars have included:
Video Conference III : Digital Resources in Puerto Rico
Centro presented another historic series of video conferences designed to acquaint researchers, students, teachers, other scholars and librarians with available resources – particularly digitized options – on the history of the Puerto Rican migration. This conference, produced in partnership with other academic institutions in the United States and Puerto Rico, was designed to acquaint statesiders with resources at various University of Puerto Rico campuses.
Video Conference IV. : Posters, Part Part II.: Teaching and Learning about Puerto Ricans in the United States
Centro capped off its video series with a second conference highlighting our series of eight posters depicting the history of the relationship between the island and the U.S. The posters reflect some of the key struggles and accomplishments that characterize the Puerto Rican Civil Rights Movement, as well as its most prominent leaders and its expansion in alliance with African American and other human rights movements. Other posters spotlight educational struggles, the institutions Puerto Ricans built on the mainland and some of the “new traditions” inspired by the emigrants. It also includes a timeline and two maps, one reflecting the Taíno, African and Spanish roots of Puerto Ricans, the other illustrating the Puerto Rican migrations to the United States and the Caribbean.
Research Seminars I and II
To highlight current Centro research, we hosted a two-part seminar examining the impact of the recession and the current state of the Puerto Rican population living in the United States. At the first seminar titled “Demographics and Social Conditions of Puerto Ricans in the United States,” researchers focused on Puerto Rican settlements in the South. The second seminar highlighted jobs and education of Puerto Ricans in the United States.
Events Centro sponsors cultural and educational activities that contribute to the study and interpretation of the Puerto Rican experience in the United States. We give priority to activities that support teaching and learning Puerto Rican Studies, develop and promote our archival collections, and that are useful to those in community organizations, public policy, and academia. Our speaker forums focus on scholarship in the social sciences, humanities, and performance arts.
For more information on current programs, events and other activities, please visit http://centropr.hunter.cuny.edu.
Performing and Fine Arts Venues
The Kaye Playhouse
Ground Floor Hunter North
68th Street, between Park & Lexington Aves.
The Kaye Playhouse at Hunter College is an inviting, fully equipped proscenium-style theatre with 624 seats, designed in an elegant 1940’s Moderne style with plush seating upholstered in crimson velveteen. Dedicated in 1942 by Franklin Delano Roosevelt, the Kaye Playhouse is filled with an air of historic elegance with modern-day amenities.
The theatre continues to be home to a wide array of national and international events, including theatrical productions, dance performances, chamber music and opera, film/photo/television shoots, fashion shows, jazz concerts, lectures, corporate meetings, vocal concerts, children/s shows, and a wide range of other programming.
Hunter North Lobby
The Assembly Hall is Hunter’s largest performance venue. With a seating capacity of 2,079, the hall hosts performances by the Hunter College Symphony, concerts, meetings, forums and a variety of other events. Anyone interested in reserving the Assembly Hall for an event should contact the Office of Central Reservations at (212) 772-4872.
The Frederick Loewe Theatre
Ground Floor Thomas Hunter
The Frederick Loewe Theatre is a black-box theatre that seats an audience of 110. It has the ability to accommodate proscenium or thrust stage productions and houses most of the Department of Theatre events. Box office: (212) 772- 4448; administrative office:(212) 772-4227.
Ida K. Lang Recital Hall
4th Floor Hunter North
The Lang Recital Hall, a 149-seat auditorium designed by the firm of Abramowitz Kingsland Schiff, opened in Spring 1995.
This state-of-the-art facility hosts jazz concerts, chamber music ensembles and film festivals and houses most of the Department of Music graduation and faculty recitals. Artists from throughout the world have performed at the Lang. Box office: (212) 772-4448; administrative office: (212) 772-4227.
The Hunter College Art Galleries, comprised of the Bertha and Karl Leubsdorf Gallery, The 205 Hudson Gallery, and The Artist’s Institute are committed to a dynamic exhibition program that expands the classroom experience of undergraduate learning across the college. The Galleries are also integral to the graduate programs in Art and Art History, affording students the opportunity to work hands-on with faculty, guest curators, and gallery staff to develop exhibitions that encourage critical thinking, original research, and direct contact with both historical and contemporary art.
The Bertha and Karl Leubsdorf Gallery is located in the West Building of the main campus at 68th Street and Lexington Avenue and focuses on historical and scholarly exhibitions developed by faculty, students, and alumni.
The 205 Hudson Gallery is a new street level exhibition space, housed in the Studio MFA program building in Tribeca. 205 Hudson is dedicated to engaging contemporary art through diverse exhibitions, performance events, and programming, including exhibitions of graduating MFA students.
The Artist’s Institute, located on the Lower East Side, was founded in 2010 by Hunter College and curator Anthony Huberman. The Artist’s Institute is an experimental platform for thinking about art in the present moment, with an annual program that is divided into two six-month seasons, each of which is dedicated to the work of a single artist.
Located in the Silberman School of Social Work Building at 119th Street, The Hunter College East Harlem Art Gallery is a space for initiating partnerships between different departments and academic disciplines. The gallery presents exhibitions and public events that foster academic collaboration at Hunter College while addressing subjects relevant to the East Harlem community.
Main campus gallery: (212) 772-4991.