Executive Director of Communications
QUEENS LATINO HIGH SCHOOL STUDENTS USE PHOTOGRAPHY
TO IMPROVE THEIR MATH AND LITERACY SKILLS
-- Exhibition of Their Work at Queens College May 12-19--
FLUSHING, NEW YORK, May 12, 2005—The Literacy and Mathematics through Photography (LAMP) program will present an exhibition of students’ photographs beginning this afternoon, May 12, through May19 at Queens College in Flushing. The exhibit is located in Powdermaker Hall in the Clarence Bunch Gallery (Conference Room 101), where a reception for the students will take place from 4:30 to 6:30 pm today.
The exhibit, made possible through a grant from the Kellogg Foundation, will feature over 25 photographs by 17 John Bowne High School students and a student from Francis Lewis High School. The probing, sometimes lyrical photos display the teenagers’ talent as they focus on the themes “Me and Myself,” “Me and My Family,” “Me and the Community,” and “The LAMP Community.”
Directed by Dr. Lillian Moncada-Davison, a professor of Secondary Education & Youth Services at Queens College, the LAMP program was developed with John Bowne High School as a way to stimulate greater interest among Latino students in literacy and mathematics by exposing them to photography and film developing. Literacy skills are strengthened when students interview the subject they have chosen to photograph and then write about this experience. Students are confronted with math concepts when they use the camera, for example, in learning about f stops.
The program, which has been offered Saturdays on campus for the past two years, encourages Latino students to use the camera to look at themselves, their families, and their communities. With Queens College teacher candidates serving as guides, the students inevitably learn skills relating to literacy and math.
Explains Moncada-Davidson, “The goals of the program are to develop a love of learning among Latino students; improve academic performance; change any negative attitudes they might have about school; improve attendance and class participation; and help them develop a sense of health and trust in themselves.”
“I’ve seen a great transformation in most of the kids,” says Shawn Carson, a literacy instructor in the program. “Through photography they’ve gained a great interest and better understanding of why they need to know more math and English to take control of where they want to go with their lives.”
Created in response to the Kellogg Foundation initiative Engaging Latin American Students in Learning (ENLACE), LAMP has been financed by a grant divided equally among five CUNY campuses (the others being Lehman, Brooklyn, Hunter, and City). Initially scheduled to end last June, the program has been so successful, says Moncada-Davidson, she was able to extend funding through this fall. “Now we have time,” she says, “to seek longer-term funding. The dean of education has been unusually supportive, so that we can count on some financial support from Queens College, which makes me both proud and grateful.”
For more information on the LAMP Program, please visit http://www.lampqc.com or call (718) 997-5161. For directions to Queens College, visit http://www.qc.cuny.edu/about/directions.php.
Queens College of the City University of New York (CUNY) is dedicated to the idea that a first-rate education should be accessible to talented individuals of all backgrounds and financial means. Founded in 1937, the college offers an exceptional liberal arts curriculum, with over 100 undergraduate and graduate programs and a variety of specialized honors programs. Located on a beautiful 77-acre campus in Flushing, Queens College enjoys a national reputation for its liberal arts and sciences and pre-professional programs. In fact, it is the nation’s #8 “best value” college according to the 2006 edition of The Princeton Review America’s Best Value Colleges. Queens College’s nearly 17,000 students come from more than 140 nations and speak 66 languages, creating an extraordinarily diverse and welcoming environment.