Policy & America’s Perception of Higher Education and Economic Mobility

Lehman President José Luis Cruz took part in an important educational panel in Washington D.C. last Thursday, discussing and debating how to translate America’s perception of higher education and economic mobility into policy.

The panel entitled “Diving into the Data: Translating America’s Perceptions Into Policy,” was organized by New America, a non-partisan think tank that recently surveyed 1,600 Americans about their opinions on the country’s higher education system. A link to the video is available here.

On the panel, Cruz conveyed his hopes and concerns facing the country’s public higher education system. He talked about Lehman’s high economic mobility rate (fourth in the nation according to a study published in The New York Times), the College’s goal to double its credentials to 90,000 by 2030, and how cuts in government funding are especially problematic for public colleges and universities.

“It is important for [policymakers] to realize that two-year and four-year public sector institutions are really the ones that are disproportionately serving students in the U.S., particularly low-income students and students of color,” said President Cruz. “For our nation to be secure and prosperous moving forward, they have to start looking at these two- and four-year institutions and providing us the resources we need.”

President Cruz’s fellow panelists were Cheryl Oldham, vice president of education policy, U.S. Chamber of Commerce; Scott Ralls, president, Northern Virginia Community College; and Deborah Santiago, chief operating officer and vice president for policy, Excelencia in Education. The moderator was Rob Nabors, director of U.S. policy, advocacy, and communications, at The Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation.

The panel was part of New America’s public release of a report entitled “Varying Degrees: How America Perceives Higher Education.” The report includes a few institutional profiles of innovative and effective higher education programs, among which Lehman’s Adult Degree Program (ADP) is highlighted. A link to the ADP profile is available



Full Circle at Hostos Community College


Learning a new language can take years to master. For Dominican native, Madeline Santana, a recipient of the Auxiliary Police Officer Eugene Marshalik Scholarship, grasping English became a pathway to her career through Hostos Community College.

After leaving the Dominican Republic at age 10 in 1998, Santana struggled to become fluent in English even though she would speak on stage in junior high.

I focused a lot on my studies and I represented my eighth-grade class. My graduation was at Hostos Community College.”

After graduating from Stevenson High School in the Bronx with a baby Santana knew that she had to find a school that would accommodate her needs. Before she went to Hostos she attended a college that was more focused on getting her into as many classes as possible and simply graduating, but at Hostos University she found something different.

“The school was very flexible towards my needs. I cannot complain about that school at all. It’s a very good school. They focus on the student’s needs.”

Learn more about opportunities at Hostos continuing education programs

When she started heading to Hostos Community College, Santana was simply taking remedial reading, writing and speaking courses in English as a Second Language (ESL) courses without anything else in mind. However, she soon came to love the school and found her passion.

After that, I went to take my career courses…I basically love the fact that I’m helping patients improve their health…in advising them how to take their medication I feel good. I love helping others.

Not only did she attend school as a young mother, but she volunteered as an auxiliary police officer for three years.

“I would patrol the city of New York and cover events like parades…and events that they have for the community.”

In 2015, Santana earned a Pharmacy Technician’s Certificate and then received a part-time position at the Bronx Lebanon Special Care Center. Next, she will be joining Kingsbrooke Jewish Medical Center full-time, but she is not done yet.

I would like to go to pharmacy school…I want my daughter to know to never give up…and know I did my best to give her a better future.”

To doing a speech in her eighth-grade class to becoming a graduate of Hostos Community College, Madeline Santana has truly come full circle.




This is what happens when two top talents from different music fields mesh their talents and find chemistry. Kat is already familiar wirh the program as she has worked with urban music legends Busta Rhymes and Trey Songz.

So, Kat De Luna, the “Whine Up” girl, continues the magic in her new video premier colloboration with Jeremih.

The results were a an old school soul style feel good song which places a modern sheen on the Four Seasons‘ classic, September, 1963 (Oh, What a Night.)

Kat De Luna, a Bronx Dominicana, once owned the number one song when she placed herself on the map with “Whine Up,” which featured Jamaican dancehall star Elephant Man, which emerged into a summer time classic that still gets played on warm weather days and in the clubs to this day.

What a Night is available on ITunes, and can be added to Spotify playlists.



Krailes Flores

Krailes Flores

El pelo es el marco de nuestro rostro, esa corona que nos puede hacer lucir bellas y confiadas o tristes e inseguras. Afortunadamente para las que nos somos tan afortunadas de tener una melena larga y abundante existen las extensiones de pelo.

Hoy en día no tienes que ser famosa o una celebridad para lucir como una, las extensiones de pelo no son un trend de moda pasajero, llegaron para quedarse y darnos la libertad de lucir bellas y despampanantes en toda ocasión.

Para conocer más sobre que son las extensiones de pelo y el proceso que envuelve esta especialidad, decidimos irnos hasta El Bronx y visitar al centro especializado en extensiones: Krailes House of Beauty.

Krailes Flores, su propietaria quien a pesar de su evidente juventud ha estado en la industria de la belleza y la aplicación de extensiones por más de 20 años, y es considerada por famosos y celebridades como “La Reina De Las Extensiones”. Esta bella dominicana se ha convertido en la latina más famosa e innovadora en cuanto a extensiones se refiere, recibiendo clientes desde todos los puntos del país y el extranjero, que viajan hasta el Bronx única y exclusivamente para poner su pelo en manos de esta experta.

Con un gusto exquisito por la estética y la belleza, Krailes se embarcó a tiempo completo en la creación de métodos de extensiones donde no se utilizan trenzas o pegamento, y el pelo no sufre ningún tipo de daño eliminado por completo riesgos como la alopecia o la caída del pelo.
Existen ochos métodos, pero el más famoso es Krailes 5, que consiste en colitas flojas que no aprietan. El secreto está en la forma de utilizar los dedos para que las colitas no se sientan, ni se vean una vez se cosen las extensiones con un hilo extremadamente fino.

Metodo - Krailes 5

Metodo – Krailes 5

Que se quiere, como se quiere lucir, textura del pelo y estilo de vida,

Alrededor de 10 a 12 semanas

Es importante usar pelo virgen, de la mejor calidad
-No dormir nunca con el pelo mojado
-Evitar los jacuzzis que tienden a enredar el pelo



Un concepto de membresía, donde se paga $99.00 anuales, obteniendo un 50% de descuento en el costo del pelo y 25% en el costo de aplicación. Este club convierte el proceso financieramente accesible para mujeres que anteriormente se intimidaban con el costo de este tipo de trabajo


Un semanario donde Krailes Flores impartirá clases ensenando por primera vez los secretos de sus métodos a personas interesadas. Clases personalizadas donde se explicaran todos los detalles de estas técnicas revolucionarias.
El 21, 22 y 23 de Septiembre en Vacca Grill and Lounge – 416W 203rd St, NYC, NY info. 646-281-1476


What You Didn’t Know about Aventura

aventura 2

Aventura is the first bachata group to originate from the United States instead of the Dominican Republic. It consists of Anthony “Romeo” Santos, Henry Santos, Max Santos and Lenny Santos, also known as the modern “Bachata Kings.” Romeo and Henry are cousins who are coincidently friends of the brothers Max and Lenny despite having the same last name and all four of them growing up in the Bronx.

The band got its start when Romeo, a shy prepubescent choirboy, wrote poetry for a girl he had a crush on, and when he started listening to bachata music with his father at home. After finding his voice at the church and being moved by bachateros like Antony Santos, or El Mayimbe, with whom he has a similar name, he decided to pursue music seriously.

The original group’s moniker, “Los Teenagers de la Bachata,” consisted of Romeo as the composer/singer, Lenny as the guitarist/arranger and four other people in the pure bachata band. After playing in local festivals throughout New York during the boy band craze of the 1990s, the Dominican producer, Julio Cesar Garcia, revamped the group.

He added Max as bass/guitarist, Lenny as an additional composer/singer, focused the group to the four Santos boys, and encouraged them to break away from the old traditional bachata style, and embrace their eclectic love of different musical genres alongside bachata.

“Usual Bachata music was a guy in a guitar crying over a woman, we wanted to do it different… If a girl doesn’t like me – then forget her, I’ll go to the next girl, and this is the type of music we wanted to make,” said Romeo.

At first the group only found esteem in its native New York after the release of its first album, “Generation Next.” It wasn’t until their chart topping sophomore album, “We Broke the Rules” came out strong with the record breaking single “Obsesion” that it became world famous. Obsesion first garnered success by becoming a number one song overseas in several countries in Europe before being a hit in the United States. The spanglish version of the song further escalated the group, and Romeo became the first Hispanic to win an American Society of Composers, Authors and Publishers award.

With this newfound achievement came backlash. Many artists and traditional listeners of bachata didn’t acknowledge the group because they didn’t dress like bachateros and they found the Aventura bachata-hip-hop-rap-rock-reggaeton fusion sound to stray too far from the old ways of the music. But Aventura stuck to its ways and continued to make songs that had a bachata backbone (songs of yearning that start with a spoken intro and repetitive chords) fused with mostly hip-hop and sometimes reggaeton beats.

“What I hate is the ‘haters’. There are a lot of haters in this industry, who just can’t accept that we did something new, we brought a new style, we are still up here, we’re not going anywhere and you’ve got to deal with us.”

Since 2000, the group has made nine albums, sold four million records in the U.S. and sold-out concerts at Madison Square Garden several times. After 2011, the members of the group have decided to follow their own musical paths. Max and Lenny created the group D’Element and Henry and Romeo are on solo artists.

Romeo is touring throughout the United States for his sophomore album “Formula Vol.2,” and Henry second album, “Henry Santos’ My Way,” will be released on June 25th. Earlier this year, in January, Lenny had spoken about there being a possible Aventura reunion for the future.

Fun Facts

  • They have been inducted into the Bronx Walk of Fame
  • The entire group is of Dominican descent, but Romeo is also half Puerto Rican
  • They all attended South Bronx High School
  • Lenny and Max didn’t think the group would disband until Henry decided to go solo
  • Obsesion was number one in seven countries and is considered in France to be the 19th best-selling song of the 21st century


By Naeisha Rose


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Bronx Borough President & “Rap Artist” Ruben Diaz Jr….that’s right “Rap Artist”!

Ruben Diaz
Look out JayZ. This New York Borough President can Rap. See Video below!

Borough President Ruben Diaz Jr. likes rap and occasionally joins artist like Rakim on stage during a Bronx Week festival as shown in this video. Altough most politicians stay away from rap…like it’s the flu, as rap music with its in your face lyrics, scare off many political types, at least publicly. These elected officials are after all public figures, always looking after their image and how people see them…by the way; how people see them does not necessarily equate to how they really are people… This borough president grew up in the Bronx, the very place that gave birth to Hip Hop (and Salsa and modern day Bachata as well), he is a byproduct of the 80’s, add that to his Bronx surrounding growing up, and chances are very high that he has an affinity to this music, and he is not afraid to show it. he’s actually not too bad, “ he can spit a word or two”. However don’t quite your day job Mr. Borough Prez!

Can Levy & Lopez play that love game?

jlo and william levy

when it comes to hot and sexy Latinos, many yummy men come to mind. Ricky Martin, Enrique Iglesias, Derek Jeter, I can go on and on and on. But when it comes to steamy and sweaty only one man can put you in a trance. Can you guess? He has dirty blonde hair, piercing eyes, perky pecks, and Oh-So toned up thighs! WILLIAM LEVY! “YUMMMM!”

When rumors spread of the break up between William Levy and Elizabeth Gutierrez, all I could say is “AGAIN?” What is it with these celebrity couples? How did it go from being their love-at-first-sight to becoming their guest-over-night? What burns out their fire of endless desire? Many celebrity break ups occur by only two reasons. One, their contractual commitments. Filming, producing, and performing all play a big part when it comes to building a strong trust foundation in a relationship. And two, depending on the status of the celebrity, ie.. A-Lister w/ a C-lister, the insecurities are a nightmare. That optimistic climb up the ladder, not necessarily moving at the pace they projected or their partner had hoped for. Leaving them all the way back there when they are all the way up here.. “HEELLOO DOWN THERE!” (Echo)

Whatever it may be, these couples are made aware clearly by their family,friends and of course their annoying publicists of the ‘do’s’ and ‘don’t’ when it comes to dating in the industry. Passing judgment of it being portrayed the real deal, a ‘red carpet romance’ or a ‘pow in the face’ publicity stunt.

All this dramatization doesn’t apply to everyone. See, as I mentioned before, the Ricky’s, and Enrique’s and the Levy’s of the world don’t fall into that publicity stunt to stay afloat. They don’t need it. Truth is, no matter who they date we at one time or another, have been caught kissing the TV or smooching the Iphone for one of them.

Well, it seems like we aren’t the only ones sending love sparks through technology. There is a rumor that Cuban Casanova, William Levy has been caught cuddling with the infamous for her ‘Big Booty’ Jennifer Lopez. Seems, that Casper has really just become her friendly ghost.

JLo and Levy met shooting her music video “I’m Into You.” Their chemistry was definitely noticeable on and off the set. Both with a track record of mixing business with pleasure, do you think this is a match made in heaven or a race for the red carpet to kick off the new year?

Between Me & You, let’s Get It Poppin’ @ the Resorts World Casino in NYC!


When you think about casinos what comes to mind? Multi-deck Blackjack, Roulette, Craps, and Slot machines, right? Well, at the Resorts World Casino in NYC they bring more then just roulette wheels spinning and dices rollin’. Resort World Casino along with their parent Genting Americas, Inc., “BRING IT!” They are not all about money and momentum they are about involving the community through a common ground. Who doesn’t like music, money and a Mojito moment once and while?

Resorts World Casino wants to ‘Make it Rain’ on you with the presence of Fat Joe and Ja Rule next Saturday on December 13th.

For those of you who are not familiar with the infamous Fat Joe this NYRican was born and raised in the Bronx, NY. Born and raised around the hip hop music he became a true legacy not only in Hop Hop market but in the Latino world as well. His recent release “Stressin” featuring Jennifer Lopez is a hit. And I am not surprised when everything single he has released has broken records. I know you remember “Lean Back” What’s Luv”, “Make It Rain”, “Get it Poppin” and many more. And let’s not forget his family, Terror Squad.

We most definitely cannot forget, Grammy-nominated artist, Ja Rule growing up in Queens, Ja knew how to treat a lady. Recording with the hottest female Pop, R&B and Hip Hop Divas, releasing hit after hit after hit and making Billboard Top 10. “I’m Real” featuring Jlo “Always on Time” with Miss Ashanti and “Between Me and You” with Cuban mami, Christina Milian. What great times! Ja Rule’s talent was definitely taking him places. His raspy voice and urban swag had him casted in The Fast and the Furious and Assault on Precinct 13.

There is so much to look forward to at this Resort. This Hip Hop event will surely make me ‘lean back’ and remanence when these songs were on my Ipod Nano.

Romeo Tonight on “The Tonight Show” with Jimmy Fallon.

Romeo jimmy fallon

The King of Bachata, Anthony “Romeo” Santos will be making his debut tonight on “The Tonight Show” Starring Jimmy Fallon.

For those Latinos who are not familiar with Jimmy Fallon, he has to be the funniest TV host I have ever seen on late night TV. This Emmy Award and Grammy Award winning talent is what late night TV should be all about. His comedic performance is hysterical! It comes naturally to him like it comes naturally for me to watch his show. His promotion of diversity in culture awareness with music, politics and every day situations that occur in celebrity lives shows his daily viewers they can relate to our insanities. From his titillating thank-you notes to foods, footwear and franchises, it just relives moments of fun moments we get annoyed about through the day.

Fallon began his TV career with “Saturday Night Live” in 1998, where he quickly became an audience favorite. And why not? Have you seen his smile? Not for nothing, but just looking at him laugh at his own skit-takes makes me laugh too.

Tonight is a night of TV for me. From The 15th Annual Latin Grammy’s on Univision and TNT to Jimmy Fallon on NBC for Romeo’s debut. I will be having my remote in one hand and cell on the other, tweeting away.

I’m ‘Stuck On A Feeling’ for Prince Royce!


For a Latino artist to break into the Anglo market it is not an easy task. When iconic artists such as Ricky Martin and Enrique Iglesias made their initial debut, as talented as they were, it was not an easy transition. I’m not talking about the production, I’m talking about the acceptance. Let’s be real, it’s the fans love that have these artist shine bright like a diamond, as Riri would say.

Prince Royce’sStuck on a Feeling” featuring Snoop Dogg, was like his new demeanor came out of thin air. His history of performing bachata in venues worldwide with almost a child-like innocence to transition to such an almost manly appearance with sultry lyrics sounds miles away from “Darte un Beso.”

The collaboration of these two diverse artists, one of pop and one of urban hip hop is not something we are unfamiliar with. From the first note of “Stuck on a Feeling” there was an entrancing sound and then when I heard the Royce’s lyrics and Snoop, it was like this song was meant to show the world that music like our culture has no boundaries. I’m really looking forward to this album release in mid- 2015 under the RCA.

Prince Royce is nominated for four 2014 Latin Grammy’s (Record of the Year; Song of the Year and Best Tropical Song for “Darte Un Beso” and best contemporary tropical album for “Soy El Mismo.” He has had nine No. 1 singles on Billboard and has sold out venues worldwide. Royce’s triumphant journey has taken him places in his heart he knew he was meant to see, feel and experience. He has proven that for every moment of gratitude he has been blessed with a multitude of success.