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State of the University
Fall 2017

Stuart Rabinowitz, President

October 2017


This past year was a very successful one. The medical school was named the Donald and Barbara Zucker School of Medicine at Hofstra/Northwell; the Zuckers’ generous contribution of $61 million will support medical school scholarships, as well as scholarships for the Hofstra Northwell School of Graduate Nursing and Physician Assistant Studies, and Feinstein research fellows. We continue to enhance Hofstra’s brand with increased recognition and improved rankings in a variety of areas. Despite challenges to enrollment posed by the adoption in New York state of free public college tuition under the Excelsior Scholarship for qualified state residents, the University enrolled an excellent first-year class, only slightly smaller than last year’s class, with excellent credentials and at a similar discount rate.

We began the year by hosting our third consecutive presidential debate – the first debate between the national candidates and one of historic proportions. I was so proud of our entire campus community for the outstanding effort put forth on such short notice – and, once again, Hofstra confirmed its place as a leader in presidential studies.

Set forth below is a summary of the past year.



The University experienced its most successful fundraising year to date. Hofstra secured $71.9 million, including cash gifts and new pledges and commitments to the University. This total includes the largest gift in the University’s history in support of the newly named Donald and Barbara Zucker School of Medicine at Hofstra/Northwell. The pledge total also includes a new investment from Toni ’63 and Martin Sosnoff in support of the University. In recognition of their philanthropy, the University named the newly constructed lobby to the Sosnoff Theater in their honor. The Sosnoffs have made a tremendous commitment to the arts and theater on the Hofstra campus.

On May 4, 2017, Hofstra hosted its annual Gala. The Gala is the largest fundraising event in the University’s calendar and raises critical support for student scholarships. Hofstra was very pleased to honor Alan Bernon, chair of the Board of Trustees. Because of Mr. Bernon’s generosity and the tremendous response from the Hofstra community, this Gala was the most successful ever, raising more than $2 million.

The University’s capital campaign continued to raise support for student scholarships, faculty support, capital projects, and programs. To date, the campaign has raised more than $164 million. The University anticipates making a public announcement for this historic endeavor over the next six to 12 months and hopes to secure additional seven-figure gifts to further bolster its efforts.

Alumni participation continues to be a critical aspect in the success of the overall development operations. The University continues to appeal to its alumni in an effort to generate more involvement and reconnect alumni with their alma mater.


This year posed a number of admission challenges. The timing of FAFSA filings was accelerated and the new SAT was fully in place for the first time, with considerable scoring changes, causing confusion in the marketplace and making predictive modeling more difficult. Most important, in April 2017 New York adopted the Excelsior Scholarship, granting free tuition at SUNY and CUNY schools to eligible residents with income levels below $100,000 (increasing to a $125,000 limit over the next few years). Although the Excelsior award is subject to various restrictions, including completion and credit requirements, and the need to work in New York state for the number of years the student receives Excelsior aid, the mere prospect of free tuition affected both first-year and transfer enrollment in this cycle.

The class that entered in fall 2017 consists of 1,638 students, slightly lower than last year’s class, but with similar credentials. Students in the top 10 percent of their class accounted for 28 percent of the entering class, up from 27 percent last year.

We experienced significant shifts in the geographic makeup of the class this year, most notably a decline in New York residents of about 25 students. This decline is almost certainly the result of the appeal of free tuition, since it coincided with the announcement of Excelsior; many of our late withdrawals told us that they were going to New York state schools. Declines were largely offset by increases in international first-year students, as well as larger enrollment from states such as Florida, Virginia, and Maine.

Welcome Signs

This year’s first-year class is ethnically diverse, with 44 percent self-identifying as students of color, compared to 40 percent last year, and tied with the class entering in 2014 for the highest percentage in our history.

Because of ongoing declines in high school graduates, particularly in the Northeast, the Admission team continues to expand our recruitment efforts, targeting states projected to see growth. Developing new markets, particularly at a great distance from New York, requires patience, as it takes many years to build brand, but we are beginning to see some progress, particularly in states such as Texas, Colorado, Illinois, Washington, Minnesota, Tennessee, and North Carolina.

Transfer enrollment this fall was lower than anticipated. Enrollment for the spring 2017 transfer class had been successful and exceeded budget. Applications for this fall’s transfer class were on par with the prior year until early April when the governor announced the Excelsior Scholarship. Immediately after the announcement of free tuition, applications and deposits for fall transfers started to decline, and that decline continued throughout the summer. Declines in transfer enrollment were the result of fewer students transferring to us from our local community colleges as well as from other SUNY and CUNY schools. We are currently considering new methods for reaching prospective transfers, as well as analyzing the current deployment of aid for transfer students.

International recruitment continues to be an important focus. The 107 international students in this entering class are a very diverse group, representing 45 countries. Thirty-three of the 107 new international undergraduate students are from China; five are from Spain; four each are from Canada, Netherlands, Pakistan, 2 and the United Kingdom; three each are from India, Macau, and Serbia; and two each are from Bangladesh, Guyana, Honduras, Japan, Peru, Russia, and South Korea. In addition, there are six international students in our English Language Program who will transition to the undergraduate program in the spring semester.

Nationally, many schools saw a decrease in international graduate students this year, and Hofstra was no exception. Enrollment declines were seen across all schools, but most notably in the Zarb School of Business and in the School of Education.

According to the Council of Graduate Schools, a preliminary survey of fall 2017 enrollment indicates substantial downward changes in admission yields for international graduate students. Despite this trend and this year’s shortfall, Hofstra is well-positioned to increase our international graduate enrollment; our proximity to New York City is an important attraction, which we will continue to emphasize as we explore new potential partnerships and pipelines for students. We are actively pursuing partnerships with external vendors to assist in connecting our recruiters with prospective students, as well as enhancing our advertising to new international markets.

We continue to pay close attention to website design, search engine optimization, and digital marketing efforts to best promote our programs and identify ways to differentiate ourselves in the marketplace. We are continuing work to increase our domestic graduate population, particularly in the Zarb School; it should be noted that enrollment of new Zarb graduate students from the United States increased by 21 compared to last year.

The Maurice A. Deane School of Law was able to increase its first-year enrollment by 37 full-time equivalents thanks to intense efforts by all to increase the pool of qualified applicants. The Law School continues to recruit in an extremely competitive environment, with increased spending on scholarships in order to recruit a class. The Zucker School of Medicine once again focused on recruiting a diverse student population with outstanding credentials and continues to increase in stature.

Moving forward, because there are limits, and costs, to increasing the size of incoming first-year classes, increasing graduate enrollment is of particular importance, and every effort is being made to enhance promising existing programs and to create new programs that have the potential to increase enrollment. I have asked the provost to work with the deans to continue to work on a comprehensive graduate program review and to identify new opportunities.


This year, 81 percent of new full-time, first-year students who entered Hofstra in 2016 have returned, a slight dip from last year’s high of 82 percent. This continues to represent significant improvement from the retention rate of 74 percent in 2001. While we have made strides in this area, we are not resting in our pursuit of increasing our students’ success. We continue to analyze the factors that correlate with student persistence toward a degree, and are implementing new initiatives to facilitate retention.

The graduation rate of the class that started in fall 2011 was 63 percent, down one point from last year, compared to the national average of 59 percent. We continue to see good improvement in the four-year graduation rate, with a new high of 54 percent of first-year students who started in fall 2013 completing their degree in this timeframe, compared to the national average of 40 percent.

Our annual assessment of student experience shows that student satisfaction is higher than the five-year, 10-year, and 2004 baseline benchmarks. Students report that they are achieving positive experiences and learning important skills, like critical thinking skills, achieving educational growth, and learning to work independently. Ratings of academics, social life, and sense of community are higher than in past years, and our students report being highly engaged with their Hofstra experiences. Academic quality, facilities and services, and social engagement all correlate with overall satisfaction, and show significant gains from prior assessments.

Academic Enhancements and Initiatives

The 2016-2017 year saw the completion of the American Council on Education Internationalization Lab and the implementation of various recommendations to better organize and advance our international initiatives. As part of the resulting reorganization, Vice Provost for Undergraduate Academic Affairs and Internationalization Neil Donahue took on the role of coordinator and developer of campus internationalization. In the coming years, we hope to see the expansion of Hofstra University’s international outlook.

Another area that we hope to enhance in the coming years is the use of technology in the delivery of course content, whether in the classroom or online. The provost received an Association of Chief Academic Officers’ Digital Fellowship funded by the Gates Foundation. The fellowship program is designed to provide critical information, effective resources, and tested strategies to help chief academic officers and their faculty understand and adopt high-quality digital courseware. We all look forward to the outcomes of Provost Simmons’ work in this area.

In the last fiscal year, grant submissions increased in dollar value by 62 percent and the awards received increased in dollar value by 28 percent. Hofstra has received a number of important awards that support our teaching and research mission. As an example of an interdisciplinary grant across schools, the team of Lian Duan (Zarb School of Business), S. Stavros Valenti (HCLAS), Roberto Joseph (School of Education), and Krishnan Pillaipakkamnatt (DeMatteis School of Engineering and Applied Science), led by J Bret Bennington (HCLAS), was recently awarded a National Science Foundation grant of $1.6 million in support of their ideas to improve science teaching in schools using computer modeling techniques. And we were pleased to receive a $2 million grant through the efforts of New York State Senator Kemp Hannon that will help fund ongoing improvements to our residence halls.

Our centers and institutes have also been very active. Each of these organizations does a tremendous job in helping Hofstra achieve its goals in research, teaching, and service. This year the new Center for “Race,” Culture, and Social Justice kicked off its work with an inaugural lecture and developed a strong advisory board. The Center for Civic Engagement was active with events such as Day of Dialogue, Globalization Day, and Earth Day. They also did a significant amount of community outreach with partners, including Herstory, Homecoming Farm, and the Uniondale Chamber of Commerce. The Center for Educational Access and Success mentors students in our local community and on our campus. The Center for Innovation has worked with local companies to help solve complex engineering problems. While it is impossible to outline the accomplishments of all of our centers, I would note that each one continues to do important work that advances our institution.

Hofstra University Honors College continues its tradition of providing unique experiences for our honors students. In spring 2017 Honors College began a pilot program, funded by a generous donation from Hofstra Trustee Steve Witkoff, which is designed to promote student-faculty collaboration in advanced research. Thirteen undergraduate student/faculty pairs were selected from 38 applications; each student earned $2,000 for assisting faculty in advancing research projects in fields across the University.

This past spring, longtime Hofstra faculty member and former administrator Dr. Holly Seirup was appointed dean of the School of Health Professions and Human Services. The school offered a new Health Informatics master’s program, with 11 students in the inaugural class. In addition, a new Advanced Certificate in Public Health was approved to provide non-degree graduate options for professionals in the community. The Occupational Therapy program received accreditation from the Accreditation Council for Occupational Therapy Education for a period of five years. The school received $744, 255 in grants awarded from institutions such as the U.S. Department of Education and New York State Department of Health.

The Department of Journalism, Media Studies, and Public Relations in The Lawrence Herbert School of Communication established a concentration in sports journalism this fall, which is designed to educate and train students who wish to pursue careers as producers, writers, reporters, and anchors in a growing and important field of journalism. A new Saturday-only, 17-month master’s degree program in Public Relations began this fall. For the first time, the Hofstra chapter of the Public Relations Student Society of America (PRSSA) received PRSSA’s 2017 Star Chapter Award, which is given to only 30 of the approximately 355 chapters in the United States.

The Hofstra Northwell School of Graduate Nursing and Physician Assistant Studies continues to thrive. Enrollment in nursing is now at 136 students in three distinct cohorts, with excellent credentials. Dean Kathleen Gallo obtained a U.S. Department of Health and Human Services grant to support nurse practitioner student transitions to primary care practice. The Physician Assistant Studies program is expanding with the addition of new faculty. Those taking the Physician Assistant Studies board exams scored well above the national average. Faculty and students in the Physician Assistant Studies program are also very active in research.

The school was honored to receive a gift of $1 million from Donald and Barbara Zucker for scholarships for graduate students.

In May 2017 Hofstra College of Liberal Arts and Sciences Dean Bernard Firestone retired from the deanship after 20 years of excellent service. Dr. Firestone will return to the faculty following his leave. The University welcomed the new dean of Hofstra College of Liberal Arts and Sciences, Dr. Benjamin Rifkin, a scholar of Russian language and literature, who brings to Hofstra experienced leadership skills, combined with an enthusiasm and passion for teaching and learning.

Overall, the faculty in the college were very active in research. They produced 22 books, 48 creative works, and 188 refereed articles or book chapters. They do a tremendous job not only teaching in their departments, but also delivering the distribution courses that serve as the foundation of a liberal arts education. Below are highlights from the four schools within the college: School of Humanities, Fine and Performing Arts; School of Natural Sciences and Mathematics; Peter S. Kalikow School of Government, Public Policy and International Affairs; and School of Education.

Perhaps the most significant event of the past year in the School of Humanities, Fine and Performing Arts was the debut of the most historically accurate re-creation of Shakespeare’s Globe Stage with the production of Hamlet during the 68th annual Shakespeare Festival. The new Globe, designed by Professor David Henderson and located in the newly renovated Toni and Martin Sosnoff Theater in the John Cranford Adams Playhouse, replaced the venerable Globe replica created by former Hofstra President John Cranford Adams.

The School of Natural Sciences and Mathematics received over $2.7 million in grant money during the 2016-2017 year from institutions such as the Department of Energy, National Science Foundation, and Space Telescope Science Institute. One of the highlights of the year was the receipt of Hofstra’s first National Science Foundation graduate fellowship, which was awarded to Dr. Nathan Rigel. The school has seen tremendous growth in student enrollment, which has led to greater undergraduate research productivity.

The Peter S. Kalikow School of Government, Public Policy and International Affairs was extremely busy during this past year, hosting a variety of speakers and events after the presidential debates and after the election. Faculty in the Kalikow School organized a significant conference titled Karl Marx’s Critique of Political Economy and the Global Crisis Today. It brought to campus speakers from all over the country, including noted author David Harvey. Thanks to a gift from Scott Rechler, five students attended a seminar at The Washington Center titled “Inauguration 2017: Can We Elevate Political Discourse?” The school also developed a new interdisciplinary food studies minor that will allow students to study social and cultural aspects of food and food production.

The School of Education has been very active in developing new programs in partnership with other units in HCLAS. Several new five-year degree programs were created in the School of Education with a content area elsewhere in HCLAS. The school has received over $1.2 million in grant funding from the New York State Education Department and local school districts. The faculty continue to mentor our students to become some of the best teachers in the country.

The Fred DeMatteis School of Engineering and Applied Science is helping to drive technology growth in our region. It saw an increase in undergraduate enrollment to nearly 700, and an increase in graduate enrollment to more than 50. The 2016-2017 academic year also saw the creation of BS in Civil Engineering and BS in Bioengineering programs, with approval by New York state of the BS in Civil Engineering also occurring this year. The school also introduced a new concentration in Digital Humanities. To promote outreach in the community, the school offered a first-year engineering course as a pilot program at Bethpage High School. Professor David Weissman received a grant from NASA to study how to measure salinity from high-resolution rain and wind data in near-coastal regions, and Professor Edward Segal and some of his students were part of a team that took first place at the seventh annual City of Dreams Pavilion Competition.

New Business Building

Following a groundbreaking ceremony, construction continues on the new building for the Frank G. Zarb School of Business. The building, expected to be completed by the end of calendar year 2018, will include faculty offices, a new business incubator for the Center for Entrepreneurship, a market research/behavioral science lab, student study space, student club space, and lounge space. This will be a major upgrade over our existing building and will offer students state-of-the-art facilities to enhance their Hofstra experience.

The Zarb School developed a new entrepreneurship global experience course model that integrates a global experience into an on-campus spring semester course. Students worked with entrepreneurs in South Africa, spending 10 days last semester immersed in the culture to gain hands-on experience in international business. Faculty also revised the undergraduate curriculum, which now requires all incoming Zarb students to take Entrepreneurship 115. Each class will partner with one or more entrepreneurs-in-residence to further expand hands-on experiences for our students. In addition, the school launched the Zarb Student Managed Investment Fund, which had a very successful first year. At the graduate level, the school developed a Coop MBA program, which placed over 10 students in co-op experiences. It also revised the Executive MBA into a hybrid model.

At the Maurice A. Deane School of Law, the University appointed Judge A. Gail Prudenti as dean in spring 2017, following a national search. Judge Prudenti has a distinguished career in public service, including service as the chief administrative judge of the courts of New York state; at Hofstra, she recently served as interim dean and executive director of the Center for Children, Families and the Law. Under Dean Prudenti’s leadership, the Law School welcomed the Class of 2020, a larger class than the preceding year, and the most selective in recent years, with improved academic credentials. The Law School also had an excellent fundraising year, with $1.2 million more in contributions compared with the previous year, and new pledges of more than $3.2 million.

The 2016-2017 academic year marked a major milestone in the history of the medical school establishment — a new name: The Donald and Barbara Zucker School of Medicine at Hofstra/Northwell. Longtime philanthropists and health care advocates, the Zuckers made a generous donation of $61 million, which will 6 support the next generation of professionals in medicine, research, and nursing. The contribution includes $50 million to create a permanent endowment to be used to provide scholarship support to students in the Zucker School of Medicine. These scholarships will enable the school to attract the best and brightest students entering medical school, regardless of their financial background.

The naming of the Zucker School of Medicine followed the institution’s unprecedented rise in rank among the top medical schools nationwide for primary care (2018 U.S. News & World Report’s Best Medical Schools), a measure of excellence that is on par with leading institutions nationwide and close to home. At #55 in the primary care category, the Zucker School of Medicine ties for rank regionally with leading centers for health care education, including Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai in New York. The Zucker School of Medicine also placed high in the medical school research category at #71, a gain of more than 10 spots from the previous year’s report.

Center for Entrepreneurship

In the past year, the Center for Entrepreneurship launched programs in two exciting and growing sectors: music and health care. The center started Hofstra’s student-run record label, which received 157 applications for 20 spots. The record label affords students from all Hofstra schools the opportunity to hold positions, sign an artist, develop and release music, and interact with executives-in-residence from the music industry. The record from the first signed artist was released this fall. The Center for Entrepreneurship continues to operate its programs at the ideaHUb incubator in the Axinn Library. Since its creation, the Center for

Entrepreneurship has worked with hundreds of students, supporting development of new businesses through:

  • Holding nearly 300 mentor sessions, a boot camp, and workshops with six entrepreneurs-in-residence.
  • Distributing $119,500 in prize money to student-run businesses through competitions such as the Hofstra-Digital Remedy Venture Challenge and Hofstra-Digital Remedy Lion’s Den pitch events.
  • Working with students to test over 80 prototypes utilizing the Makerspace.
  • Holding over 80 entrepreneurial-focused interactive events at ideaHUb, including a virtual reality showcase and Women in Entrepreneurship Week event.
  • Providing pro bono legal services to startups through the Entrepreneurship and Intellectual Property Practicum at the Maurice A. Deane School of Law.
  • Providing experiential learning opportunities to students in the Frank G. Zarb School of Business by leading simulation exercises in various capstone classes and overseeing the Business Consulting Group program.
  • Connecting students with national opportunities to showcase their businesses, including the New York State Business Plan Competition (a Hofstra team placed third in the state for its IT startup in 2017), the Draper Competition for Women at Smith College (a Hofstra team placed in the top 10 finalists out of 100), and the Women’s Business Enterprise National Council Student Entrepreneur Program, where a Hofstra student won first place.

Hofstra University was recently awarded $485,715 from the U.S. Economic Development Administration’s i6 Challenge, the most prestigious and selective entrepreneurship grant program in the entire country. With this funding, the Center for Entrepreneurship is launching the Healthcare Entrepreneurship Community Challenge (HECC), which will focus on inspiring entrepreneurs to develop real-world solutions to community health problems in underserved communities in the New York City metropolitan region. HECC partners include the School of Health Professions and Human Services, the Donald and Barbara Zucker School of Medicine at Hofstra/Northwell, and Northwell Ventures.

Diversity Initiatives

Hofstra University continues to advance diversity initiatives. This year, the University launched the Center for “Race,” Culture, and Social Justice and appointed Dr. Cliff Jernigan as special assistant to the provost for student educational equity and inclusion. Hofstra remains committed to enhancing its research and education on diversity issues.

For 2016-2017, Faculty Diversity Research and Curriculum Development grants were awarded to the following:

Craig Burnett, PhD
Department of Political Science, Kalikow School of Government, Public Policy and International Affairs, Hofstra College of Liberal Arts and Sciences

Ranked-Choice Voting in the United States: Does it Limit Minority Representation?

Sharryn Kasmir, PhD
Department of Anthropology, Kalikow School of Government, Public Policy and International Affairs, Hofstra College of Liberal Arts and Sciences

Food, Labor, and Memorialization: The Caribbean Center on the Expression and Memory of Slavery and the Slave Trade at Guadeloupe

Andrea Nerlich, PhD, and Jamie Mitus, PhD
Department of Counseling and Mental Health Professions, School of Health Professions and Human Services

Expanding the Counselor Identity Through Disability Cultural Competence

SM Rodriguez, PhD
Department of Sociology, Kalikow School of Government, Public Policy and International Affairs, Hofstra College of Liberal Arts and Sciences

Imagining African and Africa-Diaspora Centered Organizing

Jingsi Wu, PhD
Department of Journalism, Media Studies, and Public Relations, The Lawrence Herbert School of Communication

Interracial Communication, or Its Lack of, in Post-Racial America

Increasing Recognition

The University continues to distinguish itself in national and program-based rankings. Hofstra continues to appear on the best college ranking lists of U.S. News & World Report, Times Higher Education, The Princeton Review, Fiske Guide to Colleges, Forbes, The Wall Street Journal, and Washington Monthly. Hofstra was ranked 132nd in this year’s U.S. News & World Report National University rankings, an increase of a spot. National universities represent the top 20 percent of institutions of higher education.

The Fred DeMatteis School of Engineering and Applied Science is ranked 38th in the nation for engineering programs that do not offer a doctoral degree, according to the 2018 U.S. News & World Report Best Colleges rankings. The engineering ranking represents a jump of 17 spots compared to the 2017 U.S. News rankings. In its ranking of the nation’s Best Undergraduate Business Programs, the Frank G. Zarb School of Business came in at 128 on the list.


The Online MBA program again received accolades. The 2017 Princeton Review ranked the program 15th for Best Online MBA Programs, and U.S. News & World Report ranked the program #36 in the nation for best online MBA programs in its 2017 Best Online Programs issue.

In the 2017-2018 PayScale survey release, Hofstra University ranked among the top 7 percent of colleges and universities nationwide for mid-career salary, and the top 12 percent nationwide for return on investment. In the nation’s Best Schools for Business Majors (for graduates with a bachelor’s degree), according to the 2017- 2018 PayScale College Salary Report, Hofstra ranked in the top 4 percent for Best Schools for Business Majors (undergraduate program) and ranked in the top 7 percent nationwide among Best Schools for Business Careers, based on the 20-year return on investment of graduates with a bachelor’s degree, according to the 2017-2018 PayScale College ROI Report.

WRHU-88.7 FM, Radio Hofstra University, won the National Association of Broadcasters’ 2017 Marconi Award as the non-commercial radio station of the year, the second time the student-run station has won the prestigious honor in four years. Also in The Lawrence Herbert School of Communication, the Department of Radio, Television, Film was named to Variety magazine’s 2017 list of “stellar” film programs worldwide – the second year in a row that Hofstra has made Variety’s annual list of top schools for training media and entertainment professionals.

For the second consecutive year, Billboard magazine included Hofstra University’s Music Department and its BS in Music Business program in a roundup of the country’s “Best Music Business Schools.”

Hofstra University has been recognized as a “Great College to Work For” for the ninth consecutive year, according to The Chronicle of Higher Education’s 10th annual report on The Academic Workplace, which was released in July 2017.

Faculty Accomplishments

Our faculty continue to distinguish themselves through awards, prestigious appointments, and significant publications. The list below represents a sampling of faculty accomplishments.

Margaret Abraham, professor of sociology, is completing her final year of a four-year term as president of the International Sociological Association.

Kara Alaimo, assistant professor of journalism, media studies, and public relations, received the Titan of the Future Award at the 2017 World Communication Forum Gala and was named one of “50 Game-Changers of PR” by PR News.

Meena Bose, professor of political science and executive dean for public policy and public service programs, Peter S. Kalikow School of Government, Public Policy and International Affairs, edited three volumes that were published by Nova Science Publishers this year: The George W. Bush Presidency, Volume I: The Constitution, Politics, and Policy Making; The George W. Bush Presidency, Volume II: Domestic Policy (with Richard Himelfarb, professor of political science), and The George W. Bush Presidency: Volume III: Foreign Policy (with Paul Fritz, associate professor of political science).

Alafair Burke, professor of law, published The Sleeping Beauty Killer (with co-author Mary Higgins Clark).

Russell Chun, assistant professor of journalism, media studies, and public relations, published Adobe Animate CC Classroom in a Book with Adobe Press.

Steven R. Costenoble, professor of mathematics and senior associate dean for budget and accounting, and Stefan Waner, professor emeritus of mathematics, published Equivariant Ordinary Homology and Cohomology, Lecture Notes in Mathematics, v. 2178, with Springer International Publishing.

Lisa DeTora, assistant professor of writing studies and rhetoric and director of STEM writing, published Regulatory Writing: An Overview with the Regulatory Affairs Professionals Society.

Adam Durst, associate professor of physics and astronomy, was named a member of the 2017-2019 Scholar Program, Kavli Institute for Theoretical Physics (KITP), University of California, Santa Barbara.

Andrea Rosso Efthymiou, assistant professor of writing studies and rhetoric, was chair of the National Conference on Peer Tutoring in Writing (Reaching Out: Revising Writing Center Spaces and Identities, Hofstra University, October 2017).

Brenda Elsey, associate professor of history and co-director of the Latin American and Caribbean Studies Program, was named a 2017-2018 Fulbright scholar in Argentina (for research on the history of gender, sexuality, and sport in Latin America). In addition, she, with Stanislao Pugliese, professor of history and Queensboro UNICO Distinguished Professor of Italian and Italian-American Studies, edited Football and the Boundaries of History: Critical Studies in Soccer with Palgrave. Dr. Pugliese, with Dr. William J. Connell of Seton Hall University, also co-edited The Routledge History of Italian Americans.

Fernando Espinoza, adjunct associate professor of physics and astronomy, published Wave Motion as Inquiry: The Physics and Applications of Light and Sound with Springer.

Anita Feldman, associate professor of drama and dance and director of the Dance Education Program, received the Outstanding Post Secondary Dance Educator Award, New York State Dance Education Association, 2016.

Carole Ferrand, professor of speech-language-hearing sciences and chair and graduate program director, Department of Speech-Language-Hearing Sciences, published Speech Science: An Integrated Approach to Theory and Clinical Practice, 4th ed., with Pearson Education.

Ellen Tashie Frisina, associate professor of journalism, media studies, and public relations, received the 2017 Outstanding Mentor award from Public Relations Professionals of Long Island.

David Fryling, professor of music and director of choral studies, received the 2016-2017 American Prize in Conducting – Chorus, College and University Division.

Raymond Greenwell, professor emeritus of mathematics, received the Lifetime Achievement Award at the annual meeting of the Metropolitan New York Section of the Mathematical Association of America.

Jennifer Gundlach, clinical professor of law, received the 2017 Deborah L. Rhode Award from the American Association of Law Schools’ Section on Pro Bono and Public Service Opportunities.

Russell Harbaugh, assistant professor of radio, television, film, was the director and co-writer of the feature film Life After Love – which had an April 2017 premiere at the Tribeca Film Festival.

Howard Kassinove, professor emeritus of psychology, was named a 2017 recipient of the Elizabeth Hurlock Beckman Award, which recognizes a small number of leading scholars each year in the fields of medicine, law, and psychology.

Phillis Levin, professor of English and poet-in-residence, was a finalist for the Los Angeles Times Book Prize for her fifth collection of poems, Mr. Memory & Other Poems.

Theo Liebmann, clinical professor of law and director of clinical programs, received the 2017 Howard A. Levine Award for Excellence in Juvenile Justice and Child Welfare.

Valeria Luiselli, assistant professor of romance languages and literatures, published Tell Me How It Ends: An Essay in 40 Questions with Coffee House Press.

Dennis Mazzocco, professor of radio, television, film, was recognized this summer for his 10th Emmy Award as well as his re-election to the national board of the Directors Guild of America (DGA).

Rebecca A. Natow, assistant professor of specialized programs in education, published Higher Education Rulemaking: The Politics of Creating Regulatory Policy with Johns Hopkins University Press.

Benjamin Rifkin, professor of comparative literature, languages, and linguistics and dean of Hofstra College of Liberal Arts and Sciences, published Panorama: Intermediate Russian Language and Culture (with co-authors Evgeny Dengub and Susanna Nazarova) with Georgetown University Press.

Cindy Rosenthal, professor of drama and dance, edited The Sixties, Center Stage: Mainstream and Popular Performances in a Turbulent Decade (with co-editor James Harding, University of Maryland) and published Ellen Stewart Presents: Fifty Years of La MaMa Experimental Theatre (awarded Furthermore grant in publishing) with University of Michigan Press.

Benita Sampedro, associate professor of Spanish and co-director of the Latin American and Caribbean Studies program, published Rerouting Galician Studies: Multidisciplinary Interventions with Palgrave MacMillan.

Anthony Santella, assistant professor of health professions and director of the Master of Public Health program, was elected governing councilor, HIV/AIDS Section, American Public Health Association.

Comila Shahani-Denning, professor of psychology and director of the MA in Industrial/Organizational Psychology program, was appointed secretary of the New York Metropolitan Association of Applied Psychology (METRO).

Santiago Slabodsky, assistant professor of religion and the Florence and Robert Kaufman Chair in Jewish Studies, received the Caribbean Philosophical Association’s 2017 Frantz Fanon Outstanding Book Award for Decolonial Judaism: Triumphal Failures of Barbaric Thinking.

G. Stuart Smith, professor of journalism, media studies, and public relations, published A Life in Code: Pioneer Cryptanalyst Elizebeth Smith Friedman with McFarland.

Steven D. Smith, associate professor of comparative literature, languages, and linguistics, published Man and Animal in Severan Rome: The Literary Imagination of Claudius Aelianus (Greek Culture in the Roman World) with Cambridge University Press.

Barbara Stark, professor of law and John DeWitt Gregory Research Scholar, was the editor for Human Rights and Children, published by Edward Elgar Publishing.

Shawn Thelen, professor of marketing and international business, was awarded the 2016 Marketing Education Review Article of the Year for “What Do Job Candidates Consider Important When Assessing an Academic Position” (with co-author Dr. Earl D. Honeycutt Jr., of Elon University).

Phyllis Zagano, senior research associate-in-residence and adjunct professor of religion, served on the Vatican Commission on Women Deacons.

Student Affairs

For the second consecutive year, the Hofstra Division of Student Affairs was named one of the nation’s 18 “Most Promising Places to Work in Student Affairs,” for its commitment to diversity, professional development, and staff satisfaction. This recognition is from the Center for Higher Education Enterprise at The Ohio State University, American College Personnel Association, and Diverse: Issues in Higher Education.

Student Affairs worked closely with the Provost’s Office, the Registrar, and IT to launch Student Success CONNECT, a web-based software platform that will help advance our goals of student retention and persistence. The platform provides predictive analytics to inform advising and curriculum decisions.

The Division of Student Affairs (DSA) moved and improved several offices to best support student success. The Wellness and Campus Living Center on North Campus (formerly University College Hall) is now home to Residence Life, the Title IX Office for Student Issues, the Pride Pantry food bank, and the recently combined Student Health and Counseling Center. This allows a one-stop location for students to receive support from staff in these important offices. Additionally, the Center for Academic Excellence has opened its new space on the third floor of the Axinn Library, featuring an array of large group and individual tutoring and study spaces.

The Hofstra Career Center had another strong year of increasing support and engagement with a 16 percent increase in employer attendance and 27 percent increase in student attendance at our annual fall and spring job fairs. The Center for University Advising was restructured to align more closely with academic departments and launched a new Strategic Outreach and Retention team.

In response to student feedback, the Hofstra dining program is beginning a five-year plan of new and improved venues and menus – continually focused on student and customer feedback and satisfaction.

Two leaders in the Division of Student Affairs were selected and served as international delegates for Hofstra, U.S. Higher Education, and NASPA (Student Affairs Professionals in Higher Education). Vice President Houston Dougharty and Assistant Vice President/Dean of Students Sofia Pertuz visited multiple college campuses last summer and spoke at national conferences in Ireland and Chile, respectively.

Enhanced Campus Facilities

We remain committed to enhancing our campus through important investments in our physical facilities. The University is in the fourth year of a five-year, $25 million major capital improvement project to fully renovate and enhance our Netherlands and Colonial Square residential townhouses. Last summer, we renovated five townhouses in Colonial Square. These townhouse improvements included upgraded common lounges, new kitchen appliances, fully renovated suite bathrooms, new suite HVAC units, new suite and lounge furniture, and energy-efficient LED lighting throughout the building. In our six residential towers, the University continued a four-year capital project to renovate bathrooms and upgrade elevators, with Bill of Rights and Estabrook renovated this past summer.

Oak Street Center

In early 2016, we acquired the Oak Street Army Reserve property located adjacent to our Netherlands Residence Complex. This Oak Street property comprises 4.3 acres, and includes one large administrative building and two utility buildings. After extensive renovations to the facility, we officially opened the Oak Street Center in January 2017. The Oak Street Center is the new home for our Continuing Education and ROTC departments. The spaces previously occupied by these two departments were reallocated for use by Student Affairs and our School of Health Professions and Human Services.

At the John Cranford Adams Playhouse, we completed a two-year project to renovate the interior theater and enhance the lobby. The Playhouse entranceway was renovated over this past summer and provides visitors with a more spacious and updated lobby.

Hofstra continues its efforts to enhance our sustainability initiatives both on campus and within our community. The University, which received its first LEED-certified building citation for the new Zucker School of Medicine building in 2015, is now pursuing its second LEED certification with the current construction of the new building for the Zarb School of Business. Over the past few years, the University has increased from 3 to 10 percent our total campus power purchases generated from clean, renewable, off-site energy sources.


Hofstra University student-athletes turned in an outstanding 2016-2017 season, in academic and athletic performance and in service to the community.

Men's Basketball

Hofstra’s 316 student-athletes combined to post a record 3.29 grade point average in 2016-2017, including a single semester best 3.30 GPA in the fall 2016 semester. Hofstra student-athletes have now compiled 10 consecutive semesters with a grade point average of more than 3.0. During the fall semester, a department record 126 student-athletes earned Provost’s or Dean’s List accolades, while 118 earned that distinction during the spring semester. The Pride also boasted two Academic All-Americans in Hannah Klemm (volleyball) and Stella Schoen (field hockey). For Schoen, it was her second consecutive Academic All-America award. Klemm also repeated as the CAA Volleyball Scholar-Athlete of the Year.

Ten Pride programs (men’s basketball, men’s cross-country, men’s golf, men’s soccer, women’s cross-country, field hockey, women’s golf, women’s soccer, women’s tennis, and volleyball) recorded a perfect 1,000 single year score in the NCAA Academic Progress Rate report. It marked the third straight year that Hofstra had at least 10 teams with perfect single year scores.

We are equally proud of the commitment our student-athletes have shown in helping others, as the Pride took part in 55 community service projects and totaled more than 3,000 hours of service with nearly 50 groups and organizations.

Women's Soccer

Our teams and student-athletes represented Hofstra well in competition, highlighted by the men’s soccer team winning the regular season Colonial Athletic Association championship for a second consecutive season and the men’s lacrosse team starting the season with 10 consecutive wins to earn a #2 national ranking. Jack Concannon and Josh Byrne (men’s lacrosse), and Joseph Holland (men’s soccer) earned All-America accolades for the Pride. Men’s Soccer Coach Richard Nuttall was named the CAA Coach of the Year for a second consecutive season, while Harri Hawkins was the CAA Men’s Soccer Defensive Player of the Year. Josh Byrne was the CAA Men’s Lacrosse Player of the Year, while four freshmen – Luke Brown (men’s soccer), Laura Masciullo (volleyball), Alyssa Parrella (women’s lacrosse), and Ryan Tierney (men’s lacrosse) – earned CAA Rookie of the Year honors.

The Hofstra Athletics Pride Club also had a great year, and we are pleased to have former Hofstra Lacrosse standout Tony Perettine as its new president.

Information Technology

To protect the University’s data from malware and cyber criminals, many new defenses were put into place. A monitoring system was implemented that shows a daily benchmark to help measure, monitor, and remediate cyber security risks. We have implemented a system for fast storage retrieval to deal with Ransomware threats. We are implementing two-factor authentication and encrypting network share drives to protect sensitive data. Two staff members are now certified as forensic analysts.

Faculty Computing Services continues to provide services for faculty to explore how technology can be used to elevate teaching and learning. Many workshops were organized, including Teaching Online, Teaching Hybrid, and monthly faculty lunch sessions, to bring an understanding of how technology can most effectively be used in curriculum development. Blackboard continues to incorporate tools such as video conferencing and pre- and post-lecture recording software inside each course. Virtual reality and personalized learning continue to carve their way into higher education, and Faculty Computing Services actively supports these new technologies.

Computer Classroom

Student Computing Services continues to work with various departments and faculty to provide workshops and support services tailored to the needs and interests of our students, including 3-D modeling, cybersecurity, Microsoft Excel, and our annual MakerPark and Hack-a-Thon. We have also increased the reach of our Microsoft Imagine Academy Learning Plans for students, as well as our participation in Microsoft Office Certification exams. PridePrint services continue to be improved and expanded, with two additional printer locations and scan-to-email functionality. For campus residential students, a new television system was installed called Stream2. The new system provides typical television content but now is available over the network, including live streaming on personal devices on campus, plus virtual DVRs to pause, rewind, fast forward, and record 20 hours of content.

Our data networks have been enhanced through the implementation of Eduroam as the primary network at Hofstra for secure wireless. It is a network shared by many educational and research organizations around the world. It allows users to connect securely, without having to re-enter credentials, at participating institutions worldwide through a connected roaming service. In addition, 300 Wi-Fi access points were upgraded to support gigabit speed wireless transmissions.

Improvements were made to the Hofstra portal to streamline navigation and to allow users to customize not only the look and feel of the portal, but also what information they see when they log in. In addition, new versions of Hofstra Mobile for iOS and Android were released.

Classroom technologies continue to be refreshed by upgrading 14 classroom AV systems, 50 classroom projectors/displays, 70 classroom podium computers, and 289 classroom and lab PCs and iMacs.

Enhanced Financial Condition

The 2017 fiscal year was among the University’s most successful in financial terms, enhancing the financial condition through strong growth in net tuition revenue, investment earnings, historic levels of private giving, and modest growth of expenses, which provided funding for needed capital improvements and future operations. The strengthening of the University’s financial condition in recent years was rewarded with an upgrade in debt rating to A2 by Moody’s in November 2016. The University continues to enjoy an A rating from Standard & Poors.

As of August 31, 2017, long-term investments, which include endowment and other long-term investments made in connection with postretirement benefits, were valued at $584 million, an increase of approximately $106 million, or 22 percent, and an increase of $484 million, or 482 percent, since 2002. In 2017 the growth reflects new gifts and investment returns of 12.56 percent.

Benefiting from the rating upgrade, the University issued debt in the spring to finance the new building for the Zarb School of Business and other capital improvements and to refinance prior debt, taking advantage of the favorable interest rate environment. Total long-term debt remains manageable at $201 million, far less than financial resources, and continues to be at fixed rates, with no restrictive covenants.


The 2016-2017 year was an excellent year, with growth in net tuition revenue of 4.75 percent. Fundraising was also exceptional, with the naming of the medical school and other significant gifts. Many thanks to the chair of Hofstra’s Board of Trustees, who enhanced our efforts by matching new pledges made by other trustees. However, the year presented new challenges to fall 2017 enrollment and beyond because of New York state’s free tuition initiative under the Excelsior Scholarship. This free tuition program disrupted our progress, resulting in fewer New York state resident students for the fall 2017 class than last year, as well as many fewer transfer students. On the graduate side, the decline in international graduate students nationwide affected Hofstra’s international graduate student enrollment.

Thus, this remains a very challenging time for all private institutions of higher education as the effects of the economic recession continue to linger and families continue to remain price-sensitive and debt-averse, and are more willing to consider public university options. This climate favoring the publics has been intensified by the introduction of free tuition in New York state. Addressing families’ concerns about affordability will require increased fundraising for scholarships, and continued efficient management to reduce expenses where possible.

Competition for students, particularly among private institutions of higher education, has been intense in the past and will likely become more so as more New York students move to public institutions, leaving fewer students in the pool for private institutions. We are prepared to continue to address these difficult challenges, with creative new recruitment and marketing strategies, as well as the most efficient deployment of scholarship dollars. With the foresight of the Board of Trustees, we continue to invest in the sciences, technology, and health care, which are growth areas that provide expanding career opportunities, and these areas continue to be attractive to our students. We offer diverse programs, and Hofstra is one of only three schools in the metropolitan area with schools of engineering, business, law, and medicine. We have a beautiful campus and an enviable location close to New York City. We also have a national and international student body – with 50 percent of the first-year class from outside of New York. This geographic diversity differentiates us from many of our local competitors and will help us as the number of high school graduates in New York and the Northeast continues to decline over this decade. While not minimizing the challenges ahead, we are confident that we will be able to move forward successfully as we continue to increase fundraising, and enhance recruitment and retention.