2019 Advisory Council Members

Paul Attewell

Paul Attewell
Distinguished Professor of Sociology, CUNY Graduate Center

Before joining the faculty at the CUNY Graduate Center in 1990, where he works in two doctoral programs: sociology and urban education, Dr. Attewell taught for several years at the University of California at Santa Cruz and at Stony Brook University in New York. Professor Attewell’s recent research has been in the sociology of education with a focus on the relationship between educational institutions and social inequality. His co-authored book Passing the Torch: Does Higher Education Pay Off Across the Generations? won the American Education Research Association’s Outstanding Book Award, and also the Grawemeyer Award in Education. Dr. Attewell’s other publications include, Data Mining for the Social Sciences: An Introduction (University of California Press, 2015) and “Rethinking Education and Poverty” (Contemporary Sociology, 2016, vol: 45, issue: 6).

Thomas Bailey

Thomas Bailey
President, Teachers College, Columbia University
Director Emeritus and Senior Fellow, Community College Research Center (CCRC)

Thomas Bailey is the eleventh President of Teachers College, Columbia University and the College’s George & Abby O’Neill Professor of Economics & Education.

Regarded as one of the nation’s leading authorities on community colleges, Dr. Bailey is the founder of the Teachers College’s Community College Research Center (CCRC) and has directed three federally funded national centers. He chaired the Obama administration’s Committee on Measures of Student Success, which developed recommendations for community colleges to comply with completion rate disclosure requirements under the Higher Education Opportunity Act.

Dr. Bailey’s papers have appeared in a wide variety of education, policy-oriented and academic journals, and he has authored or co-authored several books on the employment and training of immigrants and the extent and effects of on-the-job training. He is the author with Shanna Smith Jaggars and Davis Jenkins of Redesigning America’s Community Colleges: A Clearer Path to Student Success. Other books include Defending the Community College Equity Agenda, co-edited with Vanessa Morest.

Betsy Barefoot

Betsy O. Barefoot
Senior Scholar, John N. Gardner Institute for Excellence in Undergraduate Education

Dr. Barefoot serves as Senior Scholar for the Gardner Institute. In her work at the Institute, Dr. Barefoot is directly involved in the development of instruments and strategies to evaluate and improve the first college year. In addition, she conducts seminars on the first-year experience across the United States and in other countries and assists other colleges and universities in implementing and evaluating first-year programs. Prior to assuming this position in 1999, Dr. Barefoot served for 11 years as Co-Director for Research and Publications in the National Resource Center for The First-Year Experience and Students in Transition at the University of South Carolina.

Dr. Barefoot has also authored and co-authored a number of publications including the 2005 Jossey-Bass books, Achieving and Sustaining Institutional Excellence for the First Year of College, and Challenging and Supporting the First-Year Student: A Handbook for the First Year of College. She has also edited The First Year and Beyond: Rethinking the Challenge of Collegiate Transition, a 2008 volume of New Directions for Higher Education.

Randall Bass

Randall Bass
Vice Provost for Education and Professor of English, Georgetown University

Dr. Bass is Vice Provost for Education and Professor of English at Georgetown University, where he leads the Designing the Future(s) initiative and the Red House incubator for curricular transformation. For 13 years he was the Founding Executive Director of Georgetown’s Center for New Designs in Learning and Scholarship (CNDLS).

Dr. Bass has been working at the intersections of new media technologies and the scholarship of teaching and learning for nearly thirty years, including serving as Director and Principal Investigator of the Visible Knowledge Project, and Consulting Scholar for the Carnegie Foundation for the Advancement of Teaching. In 1999, he won the EDUCAUSE Medal for Outstanding Achievement in Technology and Undergraduate Education. Additionally, Dr. Bass is the author or editor of numerous books, articles and digital projects, including recently, “Disrupting Ourselves: the Problem of Learning in Higher Education,” (EDUCAUSE Review March/April 2012); with Bret Eynon, Open and Integrative: Designing Liberal Education for the New Digital Ecosystem (American Association of Colleges and Universities, 2016); and with Jessie L. Moore, Understanding Writing Transfer: Implications for Transformative Student Learning (Stylus, 2017).

Victor Borden

Victor Borden
Professor of Higher Education and Student Affairs (HESA), Indiana University School of Education

Victor (Vic) M. H. Borden, Ph.D. is Professor of Higher Education at Indiana University Bloomington where he also directs the Carnegie Classification of Institutions of Higher Education and the Project on Academic Success through the IU Center for Postsecondary Research. He also serves as a Senior Advisor to the University Vice President for Academic Affairs, assisting with the use of analytics to improve student success across all campuses of the University.  Previously, he directed the institutional research operations of four higher education institutions. Dr. Borden’s general area of scholarship is on the assessment of higher education institutional and program performance. Dr. Borden was a Fulbright Specialist in South Africa and is Past President of the Association for Institutional Research.

Aixa Cintron Velez

Aixa Cintrón-Vélez
Program Director, Russell Sage Foundation

Aixa Cintrón-Vélez is Program Director at the Russell Sage Foundation. At RSF, she oversees the Future of Work program, concerned with examining the causes and consequences of the declining quality of jobs for less- and moderately-educated workers in the U.S. economy and the role that changes in employer practices, the labor market, and public policies play in the employment, earnings and wellbeing of American workers. She is also responsible for the scientific grant portfolio on Race, Ethnicity and Immigration, which addresses changes in U.S. society as a result of increasing diversity in the population. And she manages a new Foundation initiative on the Socioeconomic and Political Effects of the Implementation of the Affordable Care Act in the U.S.

Before joining Russell Sage, Ms. Cintrón-Vélez was a Research Associate at the Center for Hispanic Mental Health Research, and taught in the Graduate School of Social Service, at Fordham University. Prior to Fordham, she was a faculty member at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, where she taught research methods and social policy.  She has done research and written about urban and low-wage labor markets, and the family, employment and migration careers of Latinas in the United States.

Earlier in her career, she directed a vocational counseling and training program for low-income women at Casa Central, a large Hispanic social services agency in Chicago’s North side. She was a NIPC Fellow in Intergovernmental Affairs at the City of Chicago’s Department of Planning. And she was Program Officer of Education and Economic Development at the Chicago-based Joyce Foundation.

Michael Collins

Michael Lawrence Collins

Vice President, Postsecondary State Policy, Jobs for the Future

Michael Collins is vice president of Jobs for the Future’s Postsecondary State Policy team. He develops and advocates for state policies on behalf of national initiatives, such as Achieving the Dream, Completion by Design, and the Student Success Center initiative. A policy researcher, analyst, writer, and strategy consultant, Mr. Collins helps states to develop and implement public policies designed to increase the number of low-income and minority students who successfully transition from high school into college, persist, and earn credentials and degrees. Mr. Collins leads JFF’s Postsecondary State Policy Network, which provides access to the state lawmakers, faculty, and college leaders in almost 50 percent of the community colleges in the nation, educating over 50 percent of the nation’s students in public two-year colleges.

Before joining JFF, Mr. Collins served as assistant commissioner for participation and success at the Texas Higher Education Coordinating Board. In that capacity, he worked with K-12, higher education, the business community, the Texas Legislature, and community-based organizations to increase college access and success.

David Crook

David Crook
Associate Provost for Academic Affairs Emeritus,
City University of New York

David Crook was University Associate Provost for Academic Affairs at the CUNY Central Office. In that capacity, he directed the three independent but collaborative units that operate under OIRA’s umbrella: the Office of Institutional Research, which collects and analyzes CUNY student data for decision support and reporting; CUNY’s Office of Assessment which administers the University’s student testing program; and the Office of Policy Research, which examines factors that impact student access, retention, and performance across all of the CUNY campuses.

Before joining CUNY in 1989, Dr. Crook was a leader in developing the data resources that have earned CUNY a national reputation for data-driven policy and rigorous research. He led the development of CUNY’s data warehouse, initiated the University’s data exchange with the New York City Department of Education, and he represented CUNY in formative discussions to design the state-wide data repository that will eventually enable researchers to track New York’s students from kindergarten to college completion and beyond.

Dr. Crook and his team of OIRA analysts have conducted a wide array of research for internal audiences, for presentation to external audiences and for publication. Under Dr. Crook’s leadership, CUNY forged close working relationships with external academic researchers and research organizations such as CCRC, MDRC, Metis, Rand and Abt. Along those lines, OIRA sponsored a well-attended seminar series that has attracted many of the nation’s leading researchers on higher education.

Kurt Ewen

Kurt Ewen
Vice Chancellor, Planning and Institutional Effectiveness
Houston Community College

At Houston Community College (HCC), Dr. Ewen oversees and coordinates planning and strategy that promote innovation and enhances student success. Prior to HCC, Dr. Ewen was at Valencia College in Orlando, Florida, where he served in several faculty and administrative positions. He was responsible for Institutional Research, Learning Outcomes Assessment, Faculty and Instructional Development, Valencia’s Teaching/Learning Academy for tenure-track faculty, and regional accreditation with the Southern Association of College and Schools.  In addition, Dr. Ewen worked on the planning/implementation of Valencia’s efforts in Achieving the Dream, Foundations of Excellence, and The Developmental Education Initiative.

Dr. Ewen also speaks regularly at both state and national meetings on a range of topics that include creating and sustaining a college culture that supports student success, assessing student learning in ways that are meaningful/actionable to faculty and staff, and making effective use of data to improve student learning and success.

Nancy Hoffman

Nancy Hoffman
Senior Advisor and Co-Founder of the Pathways to Prosperity Network
Jobs for the Future

Dr. Hoffman is the co-founder with Bob Schwartz of the Pathways to Prosperity State Network. The Pathways to Prosperity Network is a collaboration between the Harvard Graduate School of Education, JFF, fourteen states and sixty economic regions focuses on ensuring that many more young people complete high school and attain a postsecondary credential with currency in the labor market. Dr. Hoffman has also led JFF’s work to develop early college high schools and to expand opportunities for college-level work in high school to a wide range of students. She served as an advisor during the planning of Guttman Community College.

Hoffman’s most recent book, co-authored with Bob Schwartz, is Learning for Careers: The Pathways to Prosperity Network (Fall 2017). She is also the author of Schooling in the Workplace: How Six of the World’s Best Vocational Education Systems Prepare Young People for Jobs and Life, (2011). She is an editor of three JFF books: Double the Numbers: Increasing Postsecondary Credentials for Underrepresented Youth, Minding the Gap: Why Integrating High School with College Makes Sense and How to Do It, and most recently, Anytime, Anywhere: Student-Centered Learning for Schools and Teachers, all four published by the Harvard Education Press. Dr. Hoffman is also author of Women’s True Profession: Voices from the History of Teaching, published by Harvard Education Press. Dr. Hoffman authored the article “Guttman Community College Puts ‘Work’ at the Center of Learning: An Approach to Student Economic Mobility,” which was featured in Change: The Magazine of Higher Learning (2016).  A chapter that includes a substantial account of Guttman’s Ethnographies of Work course, written with Professor Mary Gatta and Tobie Baker Wright, will appear in Volume II of Understanding Employer Engagement in Education: Theories and Evidence (London: Routledge, 2018).

Roberta S. Matthews

Roberta S. Matthews
Senior Fellow, John N. Gardner Institute for Excellence in Undergraduate Education

Dr. Matthews spent many years in high-level administrative positions and as a Professor of English at LaGuardia Community College. Her higher education experience spans public and private, senior and community, small and large colleges. Since 2005, Dr. Matthews has served as a Senior Fellow for Foundations of Excellence at the Gardner Institute. Additionally, Dr. Matthews served as Provost and Vice President for Academic Affairs and Professor of English at Brooklyn College/CUNY from 2001—2007. During her time at Brooklyn College, she played a key role in devising a new strategic plan, envisioning the new core curriculum and creating new undergraduate and graduate programs. She also launched the Center for the Study of Brooklyn and the Magner Center for Career Services. In 2003, in partnership with the NYC Department of Education and the Gateway Institute, and as part of the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation initiative, she established the Science, Technology and Research (STAR) Early College High School.

Before Brooklyn College, Dr. Matthews served as the founding Director of the City University of New York Honors College: University Scholars Program. During 1999-2000 she served as Interim President at LaGuardia Community College/CUNY. Prior to that, she was Vice President for Academic Affairs and Dean of the Faculty at Marymount College in Tarrytown New York. She also served on the national boards of the American Association for Higher Education and the Policy Center on the First Year of College.

Randy Moore

Randolph Moore, Jr.
Chief Operating Officer, COOP

Randy Moore, a native of New York City, is chief operating officer for COOP, a national non-profit organization which focuses on overcoming underemployment for first-generation college graduates through digital skills and peer connections. His primary role is to support the expansion, quality, and impact of the organization to serve more young adults across the nation. Prior to COOP, Randy served as vice president of postsecondary partnerships and innovation for HERE to HERE, a Bronx-based nonprofit that prepares young adults ages 14 to 25 to succeed in family sustaining-careers through working with a network of employer, education, and community-based partners. Prior to HERE to HERE, Randy served as a senior advisor to the James and Judith K. Dimon Foundation, which provided the seed funding for HERE to HERE.

Randy has 15 years of experience in the private and for-profit sectors. He had the unique opportunity to serve as the founding site director of Higher Education Programs for Year Up based in their Phoenix office, a national non-profit organization, which aims to close the economic opportunity divide for 18 to 24 year old young adults. Prior to Year Up, Randy served on the launch and implementation team of Guttman Community College, The City University of New York’s (CUNY) newest academic institution. While there, he served as the director of first year student success and advisement, and later as the acting director of partnerships and community engagement.

Diego Navarro

Diego James Navarro
Instructor, Founder and Principal Investigator, The Academy for College Excellence, Cabrillo College

Mr. Navarro’s commitment to social change grew, in part, from his work as a community organizer for the American Friends Service Committee, a Quaker humanitarian aid organization, while still in college.  He went on to accrue over twenty years of experience in research and management positions in the computer industry with Hewlett Packard Labs, Apple Computer, and NCR Corporation, and two successful high-tech start-up companies. Diego began teaching at Cabrillo College when he founded The Academy for College Excellence (ACE) in 2002.

ACE sees community colleges as engines of progress and prosperity in communities. To help community colleges adapt and live up to this role, it offer ideas and tools to transform the education experience for community college students, instructors, staff and administrators. ACE helps community colleges better serve the struggling-but-strong students now coming in search of a pathway toward upward mobility.

Terrel Rhodes

Terrel Rhodes
Vice President, Office of Quality, Curriculum, and Assessment and Executive Director of VALUE, Association of American Colleges & Universities (AAC&U)

Terry Rhodes serves as Vice President for the Office of Quality, Curriculum and Assessment at AAC&U where he focuses on the quality of undergraduate education, access, general education, and assessment of student learning. As the executive director of VALUE (Valid Assessment of Learning in Undergraduate Education), the nationwide project to conduct direct assessment of student learning for improvement and accountability, AAC&U has initiated the creation of the VALUE Institute. Additionally, for the past eight years, Dr. Rhodes has lead AAC&U’s eportfolio initiatives to enhance student learning, including the annual ePortfolio Forum.

Before moving into national higher education work, Dr. Rhodes was a faculty member for twenty-five years and has many years of experience leading undergraduate curriculum development efforts, teaching public policy at the graduate and undergraduate levels, developing learning outcomes assessment strategies, general education designs and student signature work, and forging inter-institutional collaborations with community colleges and high schools, as well as with international higher education institutions and associations.

James Rosenbaum

James Rosenbaum
Professor, Human Development and Social Policy, Northwestern University
Professor, Sociology, Weinberg College of Arts and Sciences
Faculty Fellow, Institute for Policy Research, Northwestern University
Chair of IPR’s Program on Poverty, Race, and Inequality

James Rosenbaum has conducted research on the effects of relocating poor inner-city black families in public housing to subsidized housing in the white middle-class suburbs of Chicago.  More recently, in Beyond College For All, a book awarded the Waller Prize in Sociology, Dr. Rosenbaum has been studying the high school to work transition.  He has also been studying community colleges, the ways they reduce many barriers to college, and reforms that create further improvements. He is also studying ways high schools can improve college access and college completion for disadvantaged students. His new book, Bridging the Gaps: College Pathways to Career Success (2017), describes exemplary practices to support student success, including at Guttman Community College.  A specialist in research on work, education and housing opportunities, Dr. Rosenbaum has published six books and numerous articles on these subjects. He has testified before Congressional committees on several occasions. He serves as an adviser for several national programs.

Carol Schneider

Carol Geary Schneider
Fellow, Lumina Foundation
President Emerita
, Association of American Colleges & Universities (AAC&U)

Carol Geary Schneider is a fellow with Lumina Foundation and president emerita of the Association of American Colleges and Universities (AAC&U). Under her leadership, AAC&U launched Liberal Education and America’s Promise (LEAP), a long-term public advocacy and campus action initiative designed to engage students and the public with what really matters in a college education for the twenty-first century.   LEAP has become widely recognized as a voice and force for strengthening the quality of student learning in college for all students and especially those historically underserved in U.S. higher education.

In her current role with Lumina, Dr. Schneider continues to work on practical ways to bring quality and equity together, both in expectations for postsecondary learning and success, and in educational redesigns that involve all students, fully and equitably, in empowering forms of learning.

Dr. Schneider has written extensively on all her major interests, including, most recently, inquiry learning as a top priority for educational reform; the growing importance of high impact practices or HIPs; and the need to make “equity-minded” civic learning central rather than optional in postsecondary education.  She has received numerous awards and recognitions for her efforts to restore the centrality of liberal education, including 14 honorary degrees, a Mina Shaughnessy award from the U.S. Department of Education, the 2013 Boyer award from the National Association of Colleges and Universities, and the 2016 President’s Medal recipient from Guttman Community College.  She also has been honored as one of Diverse Magazine’s “25 Leading Women in Higher Education.”

Rachel Singer

Rachel Singer
Senior Resource Faculty 
The Washington Center for Improving Undergraduate Education, Evergreen State College

For the past 13 years Ms Singer has been a resource faculty for the Washington Center’s National Summer Institute. In this role she has worked with hundreds of faculty teams from various colleges across the country helping them to design and implement strategies aimed at increasing student success and engagement. For the past four years she has also been a member of the Washington Centers’ National Advisory Board where she works with colleagues on the planning, designing and implementing of the summer institute.

From 2011-2017 Ms Singer worked at Achieving the Dream, first as VP for Community College Relations and later as a Senior Fellow. Ms. Singer was responsible for working with ATD college presidents and CEOs to promote the adoption of evidence based reforms to improve effectiveness, particularly in the area of developmental education. She also played a vital role in the strategic design and direction of Achieving the Dream’s knowledge development work. Additionally, she was responsible for designing and overseeing a re-granting program to ensure the creation, implementation, and scaling of successful innovations throughout the national Achieving the Dream Network.

For twenty- five years, prior to joining Achieving the Dream, Ms. Singer was the Director of Academic Affairs at Kingsborough Community College. Her experience supervising all administrative aspects of Kingsborough’s Opening Doors and Career Focused Learning Communities, serving over 1,000 students each semester, had significantly improved student retention, persistence, and graduation. She led training and professional development seminars on how to replicate successful learning communities for faculty and staff in community colleges across the country.

2019 Guttman Senior Staff Members

Scott E. Evenbeck, President

Rom: 702
Phone: (646) 313-8020

Scott E. Evenbeck

Scott joined CUNY in 2011 as Guttman Community College’s Founding President. He served as professor of psychology and founding dean of University College at Indiana University-Purdue University, Indianapolis. He joined the psychology faculty there after completing his Masters’ and Doctorate in Social Psychology at University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. He earned his Bachelor’s degree in Psychology at Indiana University at Bloomington.  Scott has long been involved in designing, implementing and assessing programs for students in their first years of university study. He played a major role in various initiatives to support student achievement in Indiana, including efforts to keep students in college. He has given more than 100 presentations on serving students as they enter college, and he has written many articles and chapters on academic achievement and persistence.  Scott was a task force advisor for the Foundations of Excellence in the First College Year and a board member of the American Conference of Academic Deans.  He has been a resource faculty member at the Summer Quality Academy of the Institute for Higher Education Policy and for the General Education and Assessment Institute of the Association of American Colleges and Universities. He served on the advisory board for the National Resource Center for the First-Year Experience and Students in Transition, and as a faculty member for the Learning Community Institute of the Washington Center for Undergraduate Education. The National Learning Community conference recognized him with the lifetime achievement award. He serves on the Board for the John N. Gardner Institute for Excellence in Undergraduate Education and the Community College Advisory Panel of the College Board.  He has been on accreditation teams for three regional associations, focusing on general education, assessment and programs for entering students.

Howard M. Wach, Ph.D., Vice President for Academic Affairs and Provost

Room: 602
Phone: (646) 313-8025

Howard M. Wach
Vice President for Academic Affairs and Provost

Howard M. Wach joined Guttman Community College as Vice President for Academic Affairs and Provost in April 2017. Dr. Wach began his academic career as a historian, completing his doctorate at Brandeis University after undergraduate studies at Nassau Community College and the State University of New York at Albany. Prior to joining Guttman, Dr. Wach worked in the CUNY system for over 20 years as an adjunct assistant professor, a full-time faculty member, a director of instructional technology, an academic dean, and an interim Vice President of Academic Affairs. While most of that experience was at two community colleges, Bronx and LaGuardia, Dr. Wach also worked in the University’s Central Office of Academic Affairs, giving him a broad and deep knowledge of the community college mission and the University’s structure and organization. He has a practiced understanding of the roles faculty, staff, and administrators must play—and play in partnership—to create the strongest chance for students to graduate ready to pursue further  study and begin successful careers.

A passion for excellent teaching and a passion to learn have been the guiding principles of Dr. Wach’s professional life. He knows that demanding, attentive, humane, and honest teaching can transform students’ lives. At a time of vast inequality, there is no more important task and no more powerful engine of social mobility. He brings to the Provost’s job a deep conviction about the administrator’s core role: to create the everyday conditions and environment that lead to student success, and to help faculty and staff work together to meet that vision.

Charles H. Pryor, II

Room: 206
Phone: (646) 313-8269

Charles H. Pryor, II
Dean of Student Engagement

Dean Pryor has been in education for over 20 years. His journey began with a B.T. from The New York Institute of Technology in Old Westbury, New York and continued with earned degrees/ certifications in Not-for-profit Management, Human Relations, Counseling and Alcohol & Substance Abuse Education.  His professional career encompasses two decades of experience in the private and public sectors of education at the high school and post-secondary education levels. During his career, Charles has built mentor and student leadership programs to increase student retention and success, as well as ensure a smooth transition to college life and learning. As an adjunct professor of African American Studies, he assisted students in building a strong academic base, and engaged those interested in learning about history and its relevance to the world they live in. Most recently, Charles served as Dean of Student Affairs at LIM College, located in Midtown Manhattan.

His passions for aiding and assisting parents and students to have access to higher education led him to participate and lead a number of community initiatives.  He has dedicated his life to educating historically underserved and underrepresented communities on their options for continuing education and helping them understand the financial liability associated with achieving this goal. He is currently working towards his Doctorate in Educational Leadership with a concentration in Higher Education at St. Peter’s University in Jersey City, NJ.

As Dean of Student Engagement he oversees student advisement, Single-Stop, Leadership, Peer Mentoring, Student Conduct, Single-Stop, Wellness, and AccessABILITY.

Room: 704-A
Phone: (646) 313-8022

Mary E. Coleman
Vice President for Finance & Administration

Mary E. Coleman has joined the Senior Staff at Stella and Charles Guttman Community College to serve as the Interim Vice President for Finance and Administration. She is a dedicated and long-serving CUNY administrator. Most recently, she served for 17 years as the Vice President for Finance and Administration at Bronx Community College. Before working at BCC, Ms. Coleman served as the Dean of Administration and Finance at Eugenio Maria de Hostos Community College.

Mary was born in Ellisville, Mississippi, the youngest of four children. An accounting major, homecoming queen, and 1970 summa cum laude graduate of Jackson State University, Mary Coleman was named a recipient of the prestigious Louis Calder Foundation Fellowship Award; in 1972 she received a Master of Business Administration degree from Columbia University’s Graduate School of Business.

From 1973 to 1987, Mary Coleman worked as the Vice President of Finance and Administration for a multi-corporate designer, manufacturer, wholesaler and retailer of men’s and women’s apparel. Between 1987 and 1993, when she joined CUNY as a Dean at Hostos Community College, Mary Coleman served as Deputy Executive Director of American Field Service Intercultural Programs, Inc., a 55-nation student/teacher international exchange program and subsequently held a senior management position in the largest minority-controlled certified public accounting and management consulting firm in the country.

Mary sits on the Executive Board of the National Council of Black American Affairs, the American Association of Community College’s Global Commission on Education, and the International YMCA Board of Managers. Mary’s professional efforts focus on education, business, banking, accounting, and finance.

Room: 201
Phone: (646) 313-8031

Stuart Cochran
Dean, Strategic Planning and Accreditation

As Dean of Strategic Planning and a member of the senior staff, Dr. Cochran has been involved in many of the day-to-day issues of building a new college. As a member of the New Community College at CUNY planning team since 2009 and a Deputy to the Project Director, he helped guide the process that led to approval by the CUNY Board of Trustees and the New York State Department of Education (NYSED) of the Application for Opening a New College and Proposal for the Initial Programs of Study (February 2011). Since 2012 he has overseen extensive work developing plans for assessment (both student learning outcomes and institutional effectiveness) and preparing for an accreditation site visit by NYSED that led to a vote to accredit in December 2012 by the Board of Regents. As the Middle States Commission for Higher Education’s accreditation liaison officer (ALO), he oversaw the development of accreditation readiness reports (2013, 2014), a self-study design in 2015, and as co-chair of the Steering Committee the two-year self-study process that led to a site visit by an evaluation team in late March 2017.  In June 2017, the Middle States Commission voted to accredit Guttman Community College with a monitoring report due September 1, 2018.  With senior staff, Dr. Cochran leads the College’s strategic planning, including its Performance Management Process goal-setting, and served as Secretary to the Guttman College Council from 2012 through 2017.  Upon approval of the new governance plan in 2017, he convened the implementation team that oversaw elections for the Council, its standing committees, the Academic Senate, and Personnel Committees all of which were effective February 1, 2018.

Prior to his work at the College, Cochran served as the Director of Research and Evaluation for CUNY Collaborative Programs in the Office of Academic Affairs. In that capacity he helped design and oversee the conduct and reporting of quantitative and qualitative research on academic programs including College Now, the Middle Grades Initiative/GEAR UP, and CUNY Prep. He joined Collaborative Programs in 2000 as a co-director of Looking Both Ways, a professional development project for writing teachers at CUNY and New York City public schools. He earned his master’s and doctorate in English with a certificate in American Studies at the CUNY Graduate School and taught for ten years at Queens College at both the undergraduate and graduate levels.

Room: 706-C
Phone: (646) 313-8023

Linda Merians
Chief of Staff

Linda Merians joined Guttman Community College as Chief of Staff in September 2013. She came to CUNY in 2012, working for The Graduate Center and the Invest in CUNY campaign. Previously, she worked at SUNY Stony Brook as Chief of Staff for President Shirley Strum Kenny. Dr. Merians earned her Ph.D. and M.A. degrees at the University of Maryland, and her B.A. from Manhattanville College.

An English professor by training, Dr. Merians served on the faculties of Bucknell University and La Salle University, where she taught classes in eighteenth-century British Literature, poetry, Shakespeare, composition, theory, women’s studies, and South African literature. She has presented papers at many academic conferences, and published articles and book reviews on a variety of topics. Her two books reflect her interest in British literature and culture. She conceived, edited, wrote the introduction and a chapter for The Secret Malady: Venereal Disease in Eighteenth-Century Britain and France (1996). She is also the author of Envisioning the Worst: Representations of ‘Hottentots’ in Early Modern England (2001). Dr. Merians serves as the Executive Secretary of the East-Central/American Society for Eighteenth-Century Studies and is a passionate believer in public higher education.