Reflections Through the Lens

We were six days into our journey through Southwestern Oklahoma, on a mission to gather footage for a multi-chapter documentary series called “Being Indian in Oklahoma,” directed by Prof. Campbell Dalglish of the Film and Video Production program at The City College of New York, targeted for the Smithsonian Institution’s National Museum of the American Indian. I signed on to the project as an intern through the Colin Powell Center at City College, and was tasked with being the 2nd Camera Operator under Niav Conty, Director of Photography and CCNY MFA Media Production Alum.

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By Raymond Guarnieri, Colin Powell Fellow

The rain had stopped early in the evening, leaving everything glistening as the sun began to sink behind the clouds. It was a beautiful June weekend in the town of Clinton, Oklahoma. I stood in a red mud puddle outside of one of the local Cheyenne-Arapaho community centers. Inside, Indians of different tribes danced to the steady heartbeat of the drums and made offerings to those who were sick or in need, or simply to their fellow community members, out of love and respect. Camera in hand, crouched and propped against an air-conditioning unit, I focused my lens on a group of children as they played “follow the leader” and climbed onto a storage unit next to an elementary school—a classic image of the carefree days of childhood. Continue reading “Reflections Through the Lens”

Marshall Berman: A Life Steered by Our Human Possibilities

Here one sees one of the truly precious elements of the moral and political commitments by which Marshall steered his life. He thought that we were all, in a radical sense, equal. We were equal not just in terms or our political or human rights, but in our ideas and in our minds. Marshall was breathtakingly, dizzyingly smart. He possessed one of the most agile, comprehending minds I’ve ever known. But he carefully regarded every last idea that passed before him, threw up no boundaries to incorporating hip hop, graffiti art, poetry slams, and even the watery coffee of the student cafeteria, into his conceptions about human accomplishment and creativity.

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Marshall Berman, distinguished professor at City College, was drawn to a radical equality of human potential and thinking.

By Vince Boudreau, director of the Colin L. Powell Center

Marshall Berman was a distinguished professor at CCNY, a designation that, like associate and full professor, requires a formal review and recommendation process, including the review of his scholarly work, and testimonies to their significance.  A committee is selected to solicit reviews from appropriate scholars, but as a candidate, Marshall also was able to nominate reviewers, and add letters to his application file.

His application was immensely strong, and included ringing and warm endorsements from the very best and most established political theorists (a sub-field of the political science discipline) in the world.

But it also contained something peculiar, inserted into the file at Marshall’s insistence—an unsolicited “review” of Marshall’s luminous, expansive work, All that is Solid Melts into Air. The review was hand written, and crumpled—the pen having apparently been set to paper years before—and the note itself abused by years of residence in Marshall’s tumultuous apartment, or atop the crazed jumble of books and papers that always concealed his office desk.

Continue reading “Marshall Berman: A Life Steered by Our Human Possibilities”

Powell Fellows Take On Washington, D.C.!

This May, the Colin L. Powell Center for Leadership and Service launched the Colin L. Powell School Semester in Washington, where 11 CCNY students lived and worked over the summer in our nation’s capital. As the Residence Coordinator, I was thrilled to have the chance to introduce these young men and women to my hometown.

by Elizabeth Walle, Residence Coordinator, Powell School’s Semester in Washington Program

This May, the Colin L. Powell Center for Leadership and Service launched the Colin L. Powell School Semester in Washington, where 11 CCNY students lived and worked over the summer in our nation’s capital. As the Residence Coordinator, I was thrilled to have the chance to introduce these young men and women to my hometown.

Clockwise, from left: Fellows Muhammad Saleh, Muhammed Alam,  Tahsin Chowdhury, Andrea Leon, Stephanie Guzman
Clockwise, from left: Fellows Muhammad Saleh, Muhammed Alam, Tahsin Chowdhury, Andrea Leon, Stephanie Guzman

Continue reading “Powell Fellows Take On Washington, D.C.!”