Torch Briefs: NCAA recertification, Advantage Academy

Updated 9/01/09

St. John’s athletic program is currently in the process of NCAA recertification, which takes place every 10 years.

“This is the way in which the University assures it is in compliance with all standards the NCAA has established,” said Dorothy Habben, vice president and secretary of the University.

Habben explained that the process of recertification takes about a year to complete. She said that there are three areas that the University had to examine: governance and commitment to NCAA rules, academic integrity and gender, diversity and student well-being.

Committees consisting of administrators from the athletics department and outside of the athletics department, faculty and student athletes conducted a self-study of the University’s athletic program. This self-study, which was started last summer, is now complete.

The NCAA recertification at St. John’s will conclude this November with a visit from a team including an individual from the NCAA and three individuals from other colleges.

Starting this fall, more than 40 homeless and formerly homeless individuals will have the opportunity to receive associate degrees in Information Technology and Business at St. John’s. This is through what is being called the Advantage Academy, a program sponsored by St. John’s and the Department of Homeless Services.

Advantage Academy classes began this summer on June 1 on the St. John’s Manhattan campus and Mayor Michael Bloomberg declared June 11, 2009 as Advantage Academy Day in New York City. Students who are enrolled in this two-year program will receive free housing and support services from the Department of Homeless Services.

“I am thrilled to work with an institution like St. John’s,” said Robert Hess, commissioner of the Department of Homeless Services in a statement. “It’s absolutely remarkable and I don’t know of any other institution of higher learning that could have done this any faster, could have been more committed, and reached out and pulled this all together with their best resources to make it happen in such a productive way.”