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"Civil Eats" featured Haub Law Professor Margot Pollans and the Pace Food and Beverage Law Clinic in "Farmers Can’t Afford the Legal Help They Need. These Lawyers Are Mobilizing to Change That."

05/17/2018

"Civil Eats" featured Haub Law Professor Margot Pollans and the Pace Food and Beverage Law Clinic in "Farmers Can’t Afford the Legal Help They Need. These Lawyers Are Mobilizing to Change That."

Corbin Hill Food Project founder Dennis Derryck believes that food justice depends on land justice, which is why he’s taking 95 acres of upstate New York farmland his organization owns and “turning it over to the community.” In the process, he’s tackling big, philosophical questions: “Who is the community? What should the land be used for? Shouldn’t the community itself answer that question?”

To make the project work, however, he also needed to ask some more mundane, practical questions, like: “What kind of legal structures exist for collective ownership?” Normally, Derryck says he would have pieced together ad-hoc legal advice, since Corbin Hill could not afford an attorney. But this time, he turned to a team of law students at the Pace Food and Beverage Law Clinic.

“They spent considerable time with us really helping us understand things like rules and regulations,” recalls Derryck. “They said, ‘We love what you want to do, but you’ve got to hear about all the things you’ll have to deal with,’”—like land easements and non-profit governance structures.

The clinic is the central piece of the Pace-NRDC Food Law Initiative, a program launched in 2015 in partnership with the Natural Resources Defense Council (NRDC) in New York City, to provide small farmers, food producers, and food activists with pro bono legal services. It’s also educating a new generation of food lawyers on the day-to-day legal issues that producers outside the industrial food system face.

“Legal services are a key part of the infrastructure for a sustainable regional food economy,” says Margot Pollans, the initiative’s faculty director.

While the clinic is the first law school initiative of its kind, it’s part of larger movement to make attorneys and legal information accessible to small farmers and food producers, who often end up trying to navigate complex issues—including labor policies, food safety regulations, contracts, and land transfers—on their own.

In addition to the Pace-NRDC initiative, The Legal Food Hub launched in Massachusetts in 2014 and now connects producers with pro bono lawyers throughout New England. And organizations like the Sustainable Economies Law Center and Farm Commons, along with other university law clinics, produce free legal guides and toolkits that address common challenges like establishing farm business structures and earning organic certification.

With her law students, Pollans says she emphasizes how critical legal help can be for good food businesses to survive. “The clinic is embedded in developing a regional food system … by thinking about systemic barriers,” she says. “Lack of legal services is one of those barriers.”

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"Journal News" featured Pace University in "Pace University Graduation 2018"

05/17/2018

"Journal News" featured Pace University in "Pace University Graduation 2018"

Pace Pleasantville Commencement was a joyous occasion for families, faculty, staff and graduates.

To view Journal News photos click here.

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"Pleasantville Daily Voice" featured Author James McBride in "Color of Water' Author James McBride Speaks At Pace Commencement"

05/17/2018

"Pleasantville Daily Voice" featured Author James McBride in "Color of Water' Author James McBride Speaks At Pace Commencement"

James McBride, an award-winning author, musician, and screenwriter is this year’s honorary degree recipient and speaker for Pace’s Westchester undergraduate commencement on Wednesday, May 16.

Graduation ceremonies began at 11 a.m. on the Pleasantville campus, 861 Bedford Road.

McBride is a teacher and native New Yorker, born and raised in the Red Hook housing projects in Brooklyn, and later St. Albans, Queens. He is the eighth of 12 children.

McBride went to New York City public schools. He graduated from Oberlin College, where he studied music and communications and he earned a master’s in journalism from Columbia University at age 22.

He was a staff writer for the Boston Globe and Washington Post, and later served as a tenor saxophonist and composer for jazz luminaries.

McBride is best known for his New York Times bestselling memoir, "The Color of Water: A Black Man’s Tribute to His White Mother." The book became a modern literary classic, read in schools across America.

His novel, "The Good Lord Bird," about the abolitionist John Brown, won the 2013 National Book Award for Fiction.

His work includes other novels, screenplays, musicals, and a biography of James Brown, called "Kill ’Em and Leave: Searching for James Brown and the American Soul."

In 2016, President Barack Obama presented McBride with the National Humanities Medal "for humanizing the complexities of discussing race in America.”

McBride's most recent book, published in 2017, is a short story collection called "Five-Carat Soul."

He has been a Distinguished Writer-in-Residence at New York University for more than a decade, mentoring young writers. He also created the Sister Lee music program, which teaches piano, drums, and music history to young people from the housing project where he grew up.

Also on Wednesday, David Avery Swope is an honorary degree recipient (posthumously) for Pace’s Westchester undergraduate commencement.

Swope was the third generation of his family to take a leading role in Westchester County.

The Ossining native went to school in Scarborough before graduating from Harvard and Columbia Law School. He joined the Peace Corps and served in India. He formed a legal aid society in Bombay, now Mumbai.

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"Fox News" featured Haub Law Professor Margot Pollans in "What is the farm bill? From food stamps to conservation efforts, a look at the massive legislation"

05/15/2018

"Fox News" featured Haub Law Professor Margot Pollans in "What is the farm bill? From food stamps to conservation efforts, a look at the massive legislation"

...What is the farm bill?

A complicated omnibus package, the farm bill, at its core, regulates agriculture production in the U.S. In particular, it tackles how produce is grown, what it costs and how American agriculture exists in the international food arena, Dr. Marion Nestle, a well-known New York University food nutritionist, told Fox News.

The goals of the farm bill have changed over time, from having more of a focus on a safety net for farmers to including protection from hunger, said Margot Pollans, a Pace University law professor and member of the Farm Bill Enterprise.

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"Inside Higher Ed" featured Elizabeth Haub School of Law Professor Darren Rosenblum in "Professor Bans Laptops, Sees Grades Rise"

05/11/2018

"Inside Higher Ed" featured Elizabeth Haub School of Law Professor Darren Rosenblum in "Professor Bans Laptops, Sees Grades Rise"

...Though the reaction to Logan’s ban was relatively warm, Darren Rosenblum, a professor at the Elizabeth Haub School of Law at Pace University, said he had not had experienced such a positive reaction from students for a similar policy.

Rosenblum, who has banned technology in his classes for about five years, said that students frequently ask for exceptions, saying that they have “always taken notes on a laptop,” or that their “handwriting is horrible.”

But Rosenblum tells his students that note taking by hand is an important skill for lawyers, who might not be allowed to bring laptops into hearings. Additionally, Rosenblum says, he has noticed that students are easily distracted by their neighbors’ screens. For students with disabilities, the law school at Pace pays for professional note takers, whom (if they use a laptop) Rosenblum asks to sit near the back of the class so as not to distract other students.

Both Rosenblum and John Craven, associate professor of education at Fordham University, praised Logan’s scientific approach to trialing a ban.

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"ABC News" featured Dyson adjunct Professor Jennifer Powell-Lunder in "What parents and teachers can do to not make the 7th grade the worst ever"

05/11/2018

"ABC News" featured Dyson adjunct Professor Jennifer Powell-Lunder in "What parents and teachers can do to not make the 7th grade the worst ever"

..."In sixth grade, they coddle them. In eighth grade, they are getting ready to go to high school so they are really elevated," said Jennifer Powell-Lunder, a clinical psychologist and adjunct professor at Pace University in New York. "In seventh grade, no one really cares. You're thrown to the wolves. They really are in such an in-between age."

Parents of seventh-graders likely expect their kids to step up, too, and they are usually surprised when they don't -- or don't even seem to care.

"It's the age of snarky," Powell-Lunder said. "They tend to be more irritable, kind of touchy. They don’t believe they are a reflection of their parents, but that their parents are a reflection of them."

That means the potential for their parents to embarrass them in front of their almighty peers is at an all-time high. It's because kids at this developmental stage put more weight into what their peers think and where they fit in.

Give them autonomy, not independence

At the same time, teens and tweens still crave structure and boundaries, Powell-Lunder said.

They may be looking for more autonomy from their parents, but they are not yet ready to be fully independent. Setting limits, especially when it comes to technology, is important, she said.

"A lot of time parents want to be the 'nice' parent, but kids need rules," Powell-Lunder said.

Boundary-setting starts with knowing your child and what their individual needs are, as well as acknowledging that those needs change as they get older, Fox said.

"Mom and dad have to take a closer look at the children sitting in front of them," she said. "They are changing so rapidly. If you don’t keep up, you won’t know how to communicate or listen to them."

Don't try to fix everything

With rules, come consequences. Both Fox and Powell-Lunder said parents have to let their middle-schoolers fail sometimes.

"Let them take responsibility for being a full-time student," Fox said. "That’s a contract between student and teacher -- unless you’re planning to go to college with them."

"Be supportive but don't try to fix everything," Powell-Lunder said.

"Over-functioning parents will raise under-functioning kids," Fox added.

Practice what you preach

Kids at this age are also learning a lot by observing the adults around them.

Be careful what you're modeling to your kids, whether it's screaming and yelling or being tethered to your smartphone.

"Show you have more self-control than your son or daughter," Fox said.

Powell-Lunder tells teachers: "Teach by example."

Organization helps

At a time when kids seem the most disorganized, being organized seems to count the most.

Powell-Lunder, who is a big believer in the "K-8" model because it "smooths out the rough edges," said educators in middle schools need to be more understanding of seventh-graders and teach them the organizational skills they lack. Posting homework in one place certainly helps, she said.

Fox frowns on too much homework because she said it turns some middle school students off from education. This age group still needs time to pursue passions, she said, be with family and just daydream.

Talk less, listen more

Both Powell-Lunder and Fox encourage parents to show more empathy for what their children are going through.

"Ultimately, you want less stress and tension between parent and child, and more compassion and conversation and understanding," Fox said. "They are not getting it from their peers or their own internal monologues where they are putting themselves down. We are just adding to the chorus if all we’re doing is finding fault."

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"MassLive News" featured adjunct Dyson Professor Kency Gilet in "Young, black and Republican: Why this NRA member thinks education is key in the conversation about guns in America"

05/11/2018

"MassLive News" featured adjunct Dyson Professor Kency Gilet in "Young, black and Republican: Why this NRA member thinks education is key in the conversation about guns in America"

MassLive teamed up with Cambridge-based nonprofit Essential Partners to host Guns: An American Conversation, bringing together 15 strangers to share differing viewpoints on gun-related issues as part of an effort to connect and learn.

Kency Gilet hasn't always voted Republican.

When Barack Obama ran for president in 2008, Gilet was still in college and cast his vote, excited to see the first African-American in office.

"I got really excited about the hope and change and the first black president," Gilet, 30, said. "It was after President Obama was elected I decided to actually start paying attention to politics, and started having my own opinions."

He began to notice that Obama's policies and stances didn't really align with the conservative, religious values he was raised on. He started to see that his views were different than many of his friends.

By Obama's re-election, Gilet said he had been "outed" as a Republican.

"I think the initial shock people get is the fact that I'm a Republican," said Gilet, of Springfield. "It's because I'm black and it's because I'm a mental health professional. I'm an adjunct professor, I was the PTO president for a couple years at my kids' school. In their minds, I'm in a very liberal field. In all these fields, I'm supposed to be nice and like people. How can I be nice and like people and also be a Republican? That's the mental block I think people have."

So as a young, black NRA member who works in the mental health field, Gilet brought a unique perspective to Guns: An American Conversation, an event hosted by MassLive and Cambridge-based Essential Partners that brought 15 strangers together to learn effective skills in communication and discuss guns over 24 hours on May 5.

While Gilet found the Guns: An American Conversation discussion to be productive, he said he didn't walk away feeling like he learned something new or had his eyes opened widely by the other side.  

The group got to know each other on Saturday morning before the real discussion began. A series of activities helped the 15 strangers connect and learn about each other. The group then participated in a two-hour dialogue session focused exclusively on the gun debate in America, with both pro and anti-gun viewpoints supported and expressed.

Last year, Gilet ran for Springfield City Council. It was also the year that he purchased a gun for the first time. 

"I often feel like I'm demonized, and gun owners are demonized, because even though they are among the most law-abiding citizens because of all the background checks and all the things that you have to go through to even get a firearm, I still feel demonized and hear a lot of anti-rhetoric," he said.

But that rhetoric did not rear its head during Guns: An American Conversation.

"I still half expected there to be more high emotions, animosity...It was actually really good. Everyone was respectful. Everyone appeared open to hearing people's viewpoints," said Gilet, a mental health clinician at the River Valley Counseling Center in Holyoke who assists students and staff at the Peck Middle School, as well as being an adjunct professor at Pace University.

But Gilet said he didn't feel like the arguments he heard from those who were more on the side of gun control opened his eyes to something new.

"I always want to learn more. I don't ever want to walk on this Earth ignorant. I want to hear different opinions but I haven't heard anything that I haven't already heard and a lot of the arguments that I heard this weekend were based out of ignorance," Gilet said, noting that he felt people came out of the discussion with the goal of researching more facts associated with the use of firearms.

One statistic he pointed to is the fact that nearly two-thirds of gun deaths in the country are suicides, a fact that is often overlooked in the discussion about guns in America.

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"USA Today" featured Haub Law Professor Bennett Gershman in "AT&T, Novartis face scrutiny over hefty payments to Trump lawyer Michael Cohen"

05/10/2018

"USA Today" featured Haub Law Professor Bennett Gershman in "AT&T, Novartis face scrutiny over hefty payments to Trump lawyer Michael Cohen"

...Pace University law professor Bennett Gershman said the rule on commingling client money is “one of the most keenly enforced rules.”

Both men said the disciplinary committee that polices misconduct by New York lawyers was likely to look into such questions while Cohen remains the subject of a criminal investigation by federal prosecutors and the FBI.

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"Westchester County Business Journal" featured Dyson Professor Michelle Land in "Pace Students Walk for Water"

05/10/2018

"Westchester County Business Journal" featured Dyson Professor Michelle Land in "Pace Students Walk for Water"

Pace University in Pleasantville hosted the Westchester Walk for World Water in partnership with the Children’s Environmental Literacy Foundation student ambassadors. Participating were more than 100 Pace students, staff, faculty, community members and student from local high schools including Bedford, Eastchester, Irvington, Kent Place, Scarsdale, Sleepy Hollow/ Tarrytown and the Hackley School.

Participants walked one mile with large buckets of water on their heads to demonstrate the trek that many women around the world make each day to collect water.

Michelle D. Land director of programming at Pace’s Dyson College Institute for Sustainability and the Environment, said, “Photos or stories of women and children throughout the developing world traveling miles for water often of terrible quality, in not enough. Our water walk helps Pace students briefly experience what it is like to have to do this every day.”

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"Westchester Magazine" featured Pace University's Health Care in "Pace University Celebrates the 40th Anniversary of University Health Care with New Location"

05/08/2018

"Westchester Magazine" featured Pace University's Health Care in "Pace University Celebrates the 40th Anniversary of University Health Care with New Location"

Pace University Celebrates the 40th Anniversary of University Health Care with New Location

Started in 1977, the University Health Center at Pace was the first nurse-managed academic health care service on a U.S. university campus.  The UHC continues to act as a model for other primary care practices.  The celebration will take place in two parts on April 5 at Pace University.  The conference, discussing the growing role of nurse practitioners in healthcare, will take place from 2:00 p.m. to 3:30 p.m. at the Kessel Student Center, Gottesman Room.  The ribbon cutting ceremony will take place at 3:45 pm at UHC’s new location at Paton House, Ground Level (Entrance 3).

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