1980's

LaGuardia Community College celebrates 40 years of challenging expectactions

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  • 1980
     

    LaGuardia receives $2.8 million in grants from public and private sources.

  • 1980
     

    The Community History Project is displayed throughout Queens, at subway stations, LaGuardia Airport, community centers, public schools, local businesses and churches.

  • 1980
     

    LaGuardia leases portions of the former Loose-Wiles Sunshine Biscuit Factory building, internally known as Center 3 or the C building, located at 45-50 30th Street.

  • 1980
    Fall

    LaGuardia's overall student enrollment reaches 6,600, the largest in its history, and a five percent increase over Fall 1979 totals, at a time when overall University enrollment declines by 2.7%.

  • 1980
    December 8

    The LaGuardia Community College Choir, led by conductor John Williams, performs live in a nationally televised broadcast during the annual Rockefeller Center Christmas tree lighting ceremony.

  • 1981
     

    A National Center for Education Statistics (NCES) survey of CUNY and SUNY two-and four-year college admissions data shows new freshman enrollment at LaGuardia from 1972-1979 rose 187%, the largest increase at any public college in New York State.

  • 1981
     

    LaGuardia celebrates its tenth anniversary with a week of special events, including the first of many 10K races.

  • 1981
     

    LaGuardia is the first community college in the nation to be awarded a $200,000 unrestricted Alfred P. Sloan grant. The funds are used to create the Office of Development and several new courses.

  • 1981
    Spring

    The College receives a $30,403 National Endowment for the Humanities pilot grant to develop Critical Thinking across the Curriculum, a program linking critical skills and liberal arts courses developed by Philosophy Professor Dr. John Chaffee.

  • 1981
    Summer

    Construction begins on the Library's mezzanine area, scheduled to provide seating for 120 in Fall 1981.

  • 1981
    November 16

    Mayor Ed Koch declares the week beginning November 16 to be LaGuardia Community College week in honor of the College's tenth anniversary. During a celebration at the College, Marie LaGuardia, wife of Fiorello, unveils a statue of her husband to be installed on campus. That same day, the M building is formally dedicated with a public ribbon cutting ceremony.

  • 1981
    Fall

    The Veterinary Technician program, then called Animal Health Technology, and the Foodservice Management major are offered.

  • 1982
     

    Renovations are completed on the M building.

  • 1982
    Spring

    The National Endowment for the Humanities awards an $180,000 implementation grant to LaGuardia's Critical Thinking across the Curriculum developed by Philosophy Professor Dr. John Chaffee. The program is the forerunner of the College's nationally acclaimed future Philosophy major, the only one of its kind in the nation to be offered at a community college.

  • 1982
    March 6

    The National Association for Remedial/Developmental Studies in Post-Secondary Education (NARDSE), America's leading professional society of basic skills educators, cites LaGuardia's developmental learning program as the best of current practices in the field, honoring the College and Program Director Dr. John Hoban with its inaugural John Champaigne Memorial Award.

  • 1982
    September 12

    Geraldine Ferraro, the first female Congressional Representative from Queens, later the first woman to run for national office as Vice President alongside Democratic presidential candidate Walter Mondale, is the recipient of the President's Medal during the College's tenth annual commencement exercises held at Queens College's Colden Auditorium.

  • 1982
    Fall

    LaGuardia alumni pledge $2,000 in donations to their alma mater during a six-day phone-a-thon; the College's first fundraising drive was a three-month initiative that also included direct mail appeals which generated an additional $1,000 in contributions.

  • 1982
    October 12

    Pete Seeger performs a free concert at LaGuardia in honor of working men and women entitled "If I Had A Hammer."

  • 1982
    December 11

    LaGuardia celebrates the 100th birthday of its namesake, and the opening of the campus-based LaGuardia and Wagner Archives, originally named the Fiorello H. LaGuardia Archives and Museum. Marie LaGuardia, Fiorello's widow, donates the personal papers of New York's most popular mayor to the Archives.

  • 1983
     

    The LaGuardia and Wagner Archives receives a $50,000 Ford Foundation grant to permanently preserve the personal and public papers of Mayor LaGuardia on microfilm in the Archives' own collection. Today, the Archives hold the personal papers and official documents (on microfilm) of all NYC mayors since LaGuardia, the records of the New York City Housing Authority, the piano maker Steinway & Sons, the Council of the City of New York and a Queens Local History Collection.

  • 1983
     

    Middle College High School is recognized by the National Association of Secondary School Principals, cited as a leader in innovation and creativity in a report by the National Commission on Excellence in Education, and hailed as a national model in a Carnegie Foundation report on high schools. Newsday names MCHS it's High School of the Year, and The New York Times cites the school's partnership with LaGuardia as "one of the best examples of a high school and a college merging their efforts."

  • 1983
     

    LaGuardia receives a $225,000 Ford Foundation grant to create a Transfer Opportunity Program that in 1985 becomes the College's Exploring Transfer–Vassar College transfer program, serving as a model for community colleges nationwide.

  • 1983
    March 18

    LaGuardia's Alpha Theta Phi, the College's campus chapter of Phi Theta Kappa (PTK), the honor society for two-year colleges, receives its charter, inducting 35 students in its first year.

  • 1983
    Spring

    Renovations are completed in the College's 225 seat Little Theatre.

  • 1983
    Spring

    The U.S. Department of Education cites Middle College High School for its outstanding articulation agreement with LaGuardia.

  • 1983
    Spring

    The New York State Department of Education declares Middle College High School's career education program an exemplary model of secondary/post-secondary articulation in occupational education.

  • 1983
    September 16

    Ford Foundation President Franklin A. Thomas hails LaGuardia as "the model of a new generation of urban community colleges" in his keynote speech at the College's 12th annual commencement exercises held at Queens College's Colden Auditorium.

  • 1983
    Fall

    The College's marketing publications program, forerunner of the Office of Communications and Marketing, wins a series of awards and citations for excellence for three posters and a brochure from The Council for the Advancement and Support of Education (CASE), Printing Industries of Metropolitan NY, the NY Art Directors Club, the National School of Public Relations Association, and the University and College Designers Association.

  • 1983
    October 22

    LaGuardia completes the purchase of the Equitable Bag factory building at 31-10 Thomson Avenue, adjacent to the M building. The edifice is slated to become the College's E building and adjoin the M building by eradicating 31st Place. The demapped street is transformed into courtyards between the E and M buildings.

  • 1984
     

    The Registered Nursing program is offered.

  • 1984
     

    LaGuardia brings in $6,232 in the first annual CUNY Campaign, a University-wide voluntary charitable drive, second only to Lehman College with $6,565.

  • 1984
    February 11

    Queens Congresswoman Geraldine Ferraro, then Chairwoman of the Democratic Party's Platform Committee, convenes the first in a series of national forums on women's issues held at LaGuardia that help shape the Democrats' platform on abortion, the Equal Rights Amendment, equal pay and childcare issues. Mayor Edward I. Koch, Senator Daniel Patrick Moynihan and City Council President Carol Bellamy are among the attendees.

  • 1984
    March 13

    New York Governor Mario Cuomo visits LaGuardia's Program for Deaf Adults, telling the audience via a sign language interpreter, "LaGuardia reflects education at its best. The College is doing the job of removing impediments to learning and doing it marvelously well." The program is awarded $150,000 under the Governor's executive budget the following year.

  • 1984
    April 2

    "I want to restore America's competitiveness, that's why I wanted to stop at LaGuardia today. What you are doing here is a model for what should be occurring all over this nation," says Vice Presidential candidate Walter Mondale during a campaign stop at LaGuardia on the eve of the New York Democratic presidential primary.

  • 1984
    April 7

    Mayor Ed Koch presides over a press conference and ribbon cutting at the opening of LaGuardia's New York Taxi Driver Institute.

  • 1984
    September 22

    The College community mourns the passing of LaGuardia advocate Marie LaGuardia, wife of Fiorello H. LaGuardia.

  • 1984
    December

    The LaGuardia and Wagner Archives receives donations of historical documents and materials from the New York City Housing Authority and Steinway and Sons, the Queens-based piano makers, that become the NYCHA and Steinway Collections.

  • 1985
    Fall

    The Division of Student Affairs holds its first annual Student Leadership Conference.

  • 1985
    September

    LaGuardia's International High School enrolls its first class of 54 tenth graders. IHS is an alternative public high school for immigrant teens who have been in the U.S. for less than four years and speak little or no English.

  • 1985
    Winter

    ACE's Adult Career Counseling and Resource Center opens. Within six years, the Center is the only one of its kind in Queens and the largest in CUNY.

  • 1986
    February 27

    "I'm very proud of what LaGuardia is doing and what we will do, and because this event is trying to make a difference," says Lena Horne at the College's first Tradition Dinner, a fundraiser held at the Waldorf Astoria Hotel. Ms. Horne and then NY Governor Hugh Carey sing a rendition of "New York, New York."

  • 1986
    June

    Thirteen students comprise LaGuardia's first graduating class of nursing students.

  • 1986
    September 27

    Alumni from the Classes of 1976-1986 gather at the College for a reunion.

  • 1987
     

    The Ford Foundation awards Middle College High School a $276,100 grant, the first of its kind given by the institution, to replicate its high school-to-college collaboration for high-risk dropout students in schools across the nation.

  • 1987
     

    LaGuardia establishes the Collegiate Science and Technology Entry Program (CSTEP) to provide educational and career resources in math, science, engineering and technology to underserved students.

  • 1987
    September 14

    LaGuardia represents what education should be about in New York City," says NYC Board of Education President Robert Wagner, Jr. as the keynote speaker at the College's 14th annual commencement exercises held at Queens College's Colden Auditorium.

  • 1987
    Winter

    Columbia University Teachers College incorporates LaGuardia's nationally acclaimed Integrated Skills Reinforcement method, a developmental learning program to help faculty teach underprepared students complex course content, into their Ph.D. program focusing on college teaching and academic leadership in higher ed.

  • 1988
     

    LaGuardia purchases the entire C building; with 882,929 square feet, it is the largest CUNY building in the city at the time.

  • 1988
     

    LaGuardia establishes the Institute of Sign Language Interpretation, offering an American Sign Language/English Interpretation Program.

  • 1988
     

    The LaGuardia and Wagner Archives receives an $80,000 NEH grant to produce a radio series on the life and times of Mayor Fiorello H. LaGuardia.

  • 1988
    July

    President Shenker resigns.

  • 1988
    Fall

    Fall freshman enrollment tops 3,600, making it the largest freshman class thus far at LaGuardia, and representing an 8% increase over the previous year. Total enrollment of full-time students is 8,963.

  • 1988
    Fall

    The Commercial Photography certificate program is offered.

  • 1988
    October

    The College's October phone-a-thon produces a record $10,000 in alumni pledges, a 64% increase from the previous year.

  • 1988
    November 16

    College administrators join public officials in a groundbreaking ceremony celebrating the start of renovations on the E building. The $87 million project was the largest CUNY building project then underway in NYC.

  • 1989
     

    Renovations begin on the E building.

  • 1989
    September 1

    Dr. Raymond C. Bowen, the College's first Associate Dean of Faculty, takes office as the College's second president. "I want to underscore commitment to continue a legacy of innovation that has positioned this College at the forefront of higher education," says Dr. Bowen in his first College-wide address.

  • 1989
    Fall

    LaGuardia's Natural and Applied Sciences Department receives a $300,000 three-year grant from the U.S. Public Health Service to institute the Health Careers Opportunity Program. The program is designed to increase the graduation rate and number of minority students in the College's Clinical Dietetic Technology, Occupational Therapy Assistant, and Physical Therapist Assistant programs.

  • 1989
    September 24

    Queens Assemblywoman Catherine Nolan is the recipient of the President's Medal at the College's 17th annual commencement exercises held at Queens College's Colden Auditorium.

  • 1989
    November 9

    Dr. Janet Lieberman of the President's Office shares a $50,000 Charles A. Dana award with Dr. Colton Johnson, Dean of Studies at Vassar College, for creating the Exploring Transfer–Vassar College transfer program that encourages two-year students to complete a four-year degree, and is hailed as a national model.

  • 1989
    December 10

    In response to a newly instituted state mandate to teach local history in the city's fourth grades, the LaGuardia and Wagner Archives launches its first fourth grade local history curriculum about the 1939 World's Fair in collaboration with Community School District 30. Ed Hurlihy, the voice of the first television broadcast at the World's Fair, shares his memories with fourth graders at the kickoff event. Future editions explore such topics as the history behind garbage collection and water in New York City.

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LaGuardia Community College Then AND Now 1971-2011
Forty Years of Challenging Expectations


Our timeline tells our story, then AND now.

In 2011, LaGuardia Community College celebrates 40 years of opening the doors of higher learning to all. By challenging expectations and daring to do more everyday, LAGCC is at the forefront of momentous shifts in the landscape of higher education in the 21st century. Now, as we did then, we imagine new ideas, create new curriculum and pioneer programs to make our community and our country stronger.