Hikind has high hopes for Brooklyn College president
Lawmaker says he looks forward to new chapter
The often-troubled relationship between Brooklyn College and an outspoken Brooklyn lawmaker appears to be on the mend. State Assemblymember Dov Hikind, who has often been critical of the college over what he said are anti-Semitic activities on campus, met with the school’s new president, Michelle Anderson, on Aug. 17 and said he came away from the meeting impressed with the educator.
Hikind said he and Anderson, who was appointed to her post by City University of New York (CUNY) President James Milliken on May 2, discussed the direction of the college, policies and how to forge a working relationship.
Anderson is the 10th president in the history of Brooklyn College. The campus is located on Bedford Avenue in Midwood.
“I look forward to turning a new chapter and working with President Anderson to tackle issues head-on,” Hikind (D-Borough Park-Midwood) said in a statement. “After meeting President Anderson, it became very evident as to why she was hand-picked to represent Brooklyn College.”
Hikind also called Anderson “a breath of fresh air.”
Over the past few years, Brooklyn College has seen several anti-Semitic incidents on the campus, according to Hikind, an Orthodox Jew. In February, several students belonging to the group Students for Justice in Palestine interrupted a faculty council meeting with anti-Zionist chants, he said.
In the wake of the incident, Hikind called on Brooklyn College to expel the student group from the campus grounds. Hikind also called on the college to put an end to its co-sponsorship of what he termed “anti-Israel hate-fests” after the institution was scheduled to allow a controversial academic to speak as a guest of Students for Justice in Palestine.
But after the introductory meeting with Anderson, Hikind said he felt reassured that the college is in good hands.
“I was so impressed with the direction that President Anderson envisions for Brooklyn College,” Hikind said. “Not only is President Anderson class-personified, but her character and morals are right in line with what an academic professional should be.”
Anderson is the former dean of the CUNY School of Law. At the time of her appointment to Brooklyn College, Milliken and former CUNY board of trustees Chairperson Benno Schmidt published a joint statement praising her on the CUNY website, www.1cuny.edu.
“Dean Anderson brings to Brooklyn College a record of extraordinary academic leadership and success, a strong commitment to students, an exemplary record of public service and a deep belief in Brooklyn College’s mission of academic excellence and opportunity,” the statement read.
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