Metropolitan College of New York Military Friendly School
Request Information Apply Online Free

 
The MPA in Emergency and Disaster Management
Disaster Central
MCNY's Emergency and Disaster Management Blog

A Conversation with Kay

December 30, 2010

By Matthew Ricci-

MCNY President Vinton Thompson, Dean Humphrey Crookendale, and Program Director Ali Gheith, welcomed a small number of students and faculty members from the MPA in Emergency & Disaster Management (EDM) program, who had the pleasure of being part of an intimate conversation with Kay Goss, CEM—the former Associate Director of the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA).  Ms. Goss made herself available to members of the program to give the opportunity to share the work of our faculty and students, and give some feedback to how we can further develop our program.

Those in attendance included Professors Chuck Frank, Mick Maurer, Lorraine Motola, and Johnny Velez. The students in attendance were Bibi Leslie, Matthew Ricci, and Dilshad Jafarly, who were joined by alum Matthew Khaled, CEM. All were very grateful, not only for her having taken the time, but in her approachable demeanor and thoughtful advice – backed by years of pioneering the professionalization of the field.

At FEMA Kay Goss was in-charge of the National Preparedness, Training and Exercises Directorate, a position she held from 1994, when appointed by President Clinton, until 2001. She is currently the Senior Advisor for Emergency Management and Continuity Programs at SRT International, and has served as an adjunct professor at many institutions, including the John Jay College of Criminal Justice. Ms. Goss who is very enthused about international programs also teaches at Istanbul Technical University (ITU) in person and via distance learning. Additionally, Ms. Goss is the Chair of the Education and Training Committee and member of the CEM Commission of the International Association of Emergency Managers (IAEM).

The conversation started with an explanation of MCNY’s history as a program, starting with the creation of the curriculum after the 9/11 attacks, up to present day. Faculty and students discussed the program’s long term aspirations, history of overseas class projects in Israel, and future projects in Chile, England, and other countries. Ms. Goss shared the enthusiasm in further developing the program, and offered her own anecdotes about the history of education and professionalization in emergency management. The discussion was also about the successes of our six (6) international students that were brought over from Haiti to obtain an advanced degree in emergency management to implement academic concepts and theories in a practical setting once they return (to Haiti) with new skills and tools to help in the recovery effort and other phases of Comprehensive Emergency Management.

Ms. Goss also took the time to connect with each student in the room, beginning with very helpful advice of how to approach our Certified Emergency Manager (CEM) credentialing. She gave excellent advice to one student who had recently found success in creating a Business Continuity program at her organization.  This author personally benefited from her generous support with advice concerning documenting and publishing an upcoming trip to Hospital Bernard Mevs, a trauma/critical care hospital in Port-Au-Prince, Haiti.

With the program’s leadership constantly looking to stay current and find new approaches for ongoing development of the EDM program, the take away from such an accomplished and helpful woman as Ms. Goss was an extremely beneficial experience.

Email this · Subscribe to this Feed · Bookmark This!

Posted by Disaster Central in Emergency Management Planning, Emergency Preparedness, Government, Homeland Security, Interview, MCNY EDM Program. Comments Off

Disaster Central is also a resource for information relating to MCNY’s MPA program in Emergency Management and Homeland Security, as well as providing insight and commentary on the topics of Disaster Management, Emergency Management and Homeland Security.

Joe Flood of “The Fires”

November 16, 2010

Metropolitan of New York (MCNY) MPA Emergency & Disaster Management announces reading/talk with book author Joe Flood (joe-flood.com) of “The Fires on Tuesday, November 23rd, 2010 from 6-8 PM at 431 Canal Street – Room 11K.

A former Bronx-based journalist examines the epidemic of fires that swept New York City in the 1960s and ’70s. Flood focuses on John O’Hagan, the fire commissioner who presided over the worst of “the Wars,” as the era is known in FDNY lore. Ambitious and self-educated, O’Hagan came up from the ranks to become the youngest chief in the department’s history.

When reformer John Lindsay was elected mayor in 1966, O’Hagan, who strongly believed in the use of statistics and systems analysis to organize the department, became one of his leading allies. The new mayor sought the advice of the RAND Corporation, the legendary think tank that had made its reputation analyzing nuclear warfare for the Air Force. On the surface, it was a perfect alliance. RAND needed new clients, Lindsay needed a blueprint for rational government and O’Hagan needed support for his ideas for making firefighting a scientific discipline. But as Flood shows, the reformers’ characteristic weakness was a lack of the local knowledge that had been the bread and butter of the machine politicians they had ousted.

The author writes that harried fire captains, given stopwatches to time how long it took their men to reach a fire scene, often lost or broke them, then submitted figures they thought made them look good. RAND whiz kids used simplified formulas to analyze the flawed data they received. O’Hagan, eager to help Lindsay cut the city’s bloated budget, used the RAND results to close down firehouses he already ‘knew’ were underperforming-which often turned out to be the ones where union leaders were based.

Flood casts a wide net, looking into New York machine politics, the development of systems analysis, the dynamics of urban growth and an array of unexpected byways of NYC history. While his conclusions perhaps go to far in generalizing from the excesses of Lindsay and RAND to condemn liberal reformers as a group, Flood provides a riveting look inside one of the most challenging eras of recent NYC history. Important reading for anyone who cares about cities and how they are governed.” -Kirkus

Email this · Subscribe to this Feed · Bookmark This!

Posted by Disaster Central in Disaster Central, Disaster Preparedness, Emergency Management Planning, Events, Natural Disasters. Comments Off

Disaster Central is also a resource for information relating to MCNY’s MPA program in Emergency Management and Homeland Security, as well as providing insight and commentary on the topics of Disaster Management, Emergency Management and Homeland Security.

ABC-TV’s coverage of MCNY’s Haiti Effort

October 19, 2010

MCNY-EDM program prepares students from Haiti to help rebuild their earthquake-stricken country.

ABC-TV’s coverage of MCNY’s Haiti Effort

NEW YORK (WABC) – Several Haitian nationals who survived that catastrophic earthquake are now here and learning about disaster relief.

The hope is that they can teach others how to prepare for unforeseeable tragedies.

“Suddenly, the earthquake happened and I said, ‘oh, my God,’” Elie Jerome explained.

Jerome was at his office job, in Port-au-Prince, Haiti when last year’s earthquake devastated his country.

“There (are) too many people that have been dying because we don’t know what to do and how to do,” he said.

Jerome is working toward a master’s degree in emergency and disaster management at Metropolitan College of New York. The 16-month course began this semester, and includes five other hand-picked Haitian nationals on full scholarships.

“We were looking for people who had a commitment to return to Haiti and in the mitigation of future disasters,” said Vinton Thompson, college president of MCNY.

Ingrid St. Fermin was not in Haiti during the earthquake, but some of her relatives lost their homes and a close cousin lost his life.

“The roof fell on his head and he died at the same moment,” she said.

The course covers how emergency responders should handle both natural and man-made disasters.

Those involved with this course were happy to share it because they believe in it, and because they want all of us to remember that the story of the earthquake in Haiti is not over.

“I am learning here, so I don’t know what will happen later, tomorrow. But I have that feeling, that determination that I will do a good job in Haiti,” St. Fermin said.

The college hopes to help place the graduates in key positions in Haiti.

Email this · Subscribe to this Feed · Bookmark This!

Posted by Disaster Central in Disaster Preparedness, Emergency Management Planning, MCNY EDM Program, Natural Disasters, Videos. Comments Off

Disaster Central is also a resource for information relating to MCNY’s MPA program in Emergency Management and Homeland Security, as well as providing insight and commentary on the topics of Disaster Management, Emergency Management and Homeland Security.

Tabletop Exercise at Wyckoff Heights Medical Center

October 18, 2010

The MPA in Emergency and Disaster Management Program had another successful hands-on event on October 7, 2010.  Purpose 2 students and Professor Contreras led a Tabletop exercise focusing on an evacuation due to a bomb threat for the leadership staff at Wyckoff Heights Medical Center.  Approximately 20 staff members participated including the Chief Operating Officer, Harold McDonald.

Although the event started after normal work hours on a Thursday before a holiday weekend (at 500PM), the participants were initially apprehensive about the exercise but eventually became fully engaged in the discussion-based exercise.

The tabletop exercise was facilitated by MCNY graduate students Jack Finkelstein and Cliff Miller.  The remaining Purpose 2 students, Najeeb Abubakar, Dilshad Jafarly, Madeline Tavarez and Jazzlyn Martinez, served as observers, evaluators and recorders.  It was an interesting and valuable experience for all participants.  Professor Contreras led the hotwash immediately after the exercise.  A comprehensive After Action Report (AAR) will be prepared by the class and submitted to the hospital within 30 days.

The exercise finally ended at 8:30 PM and a quick debriefing was conducted.  All of the hospital staff was motivated to have more exercises.  That being said, this tabletop exercise was a precursor for an evacuation drill to be held in November.  Hospital staff was quick to acknowledge that this exercise was a very worthwhile activity.  Among other healthcare-specific issues, the importance of the Incident Command System and NIMS were highlighted.

Congratulations to all of the members of Purpose 2 for a job well done!

MCNY-EDM Purpose 2 Students and Professor Contreras at Wyckoff Heights Medical Center

MCNY E &DM Purpose 2 students and Professor Contreras pose for a picture after a successful tabletop exercise at Wyckoff Heights Medical Center on October 7, 2010.

Staff at Wyckoff Heights Medical Center

Staff at Wyckoff Heights Medical Center participated in a Tabletop Exercise facilitated by MCNY Emergency and Disaster Management students on October 7, 2010.

Email this · Subscribe to this Feed · Bookmark This!

Posted by Disaster Central in Emergency Management Planning, Emergency Preparedness, Events, MCNY EDM Program. Comments Off

Disaster Central is also a resource for information relating to MCNY’s MPA program in Emergency Management and Homeland Security, as well as providing insight and commentary on the topics of Disaster Management, Emergency Management and Homeland Security.

MPA Emergency and Disaster Management Program has reached another milestone!

September 28, 2010

The program recently hosted the Certified Emergency Management designation prep class and examination and the following professors, alumni and students have passed: Prof. Joan M. Thomas; Jean Paul Roggiero; Derek Powers; Prof. George Contreras; Ruben de la Concha; Matthew Khaled

Having this designation is a major accomplishment for any Emergency Management practitioner and more and more is becoming a professional hiring requirement.

With this in mind the EDM department will continue to sponsor prep classes and proctor exams and is now holding documentation review classes for students, faculty, staff and alumni of MCNY.

For more information, please contact program director Ali Gheith at

Email this · Subscribe to this Feed · Bookmark This!

Posted by Disaster Central in Disaster Central, Emergency Management Planning, Events. Comments Off

Disaster Central is also a resource for information relating to MCNY’s MPA program in Emergency Management and Homeland Security, as well as providing insight and commentary on the topics of Disaster Management, Emergency Management and Homeland Security.

The Symposium at Brooklyn Borough Hall

September 23, 2010

Twenty-One MCNY Emergency and Disaster students pose for a photo after moderating a Symposium recently at Brooklyn Borough Hall. The symposiums was sponsored by the New York City Office of Emergency Management.

Email this · Subscribe to this Feed · Bookmark This!

Posted by Disaster Central in Emergency Management Planning, Events. Comments Off

Disaster Central is also a resource for information relating to MCNY’s MPA program in Emergency Management and Homeland Security, as well as providing insight and commentary on the topics of Disaster Management, Emergency Management and Homeland Security.

Financial Incentives – Update

August 12, 2008

On the morning of August 12, 2008, a large section of glass-cladding tumbled 51 stories from the new Bank of America Building near Times Square, sailed across 42nd Street, and shattered on the sidewalk shed in front of the former Verizon building.  Thankfully, only one minor injury was reported.

However, as the situation indicates, it could have been much worse.  Since Emergency Management is often about prevention, the City of New York needs to take more strident steps toward mitigating the many hazards associated with construction sites in the City.  Taking a page from New York City’s War on Big Tobacco, skyhigh fines levied against the property owners, construction companies, and others associated with these projects will go a long way toward reducing the threats to the public and our first responders from shoddy construction and safety practices.  As the financial incentive argument contends, the City must make safety and responsibility a less expensive option than non-compliance.  Therefore, fines on the order of several million dollars per violation are in order.  Smoking is hazardous to your health – so are falling windows and debris, collapsing cranes, and improper construction practices.  Hopefully, just as the City has led the way in stamping out smoking, it will now address another clear and present danger to the health and security of all New Yorkers.

Email this · Subscribe to this Feed · Bookmark This!

Posted by Disaster Central in Emergency Management Planning. Comments Off

Disaster Central is also a resource for information relating to MCNY’s MPA program in Emergency Management and Homeland Security, as well as providing insight and commentary on the topics of Disaster Management, Emergency Management and Homeland Security.

Special Powers Legislation, Terrorism, and Emergency Management

August 4, 2008

Throughout history, governments have during times of crisis devised and/or enacted special powers legislation as part of their efforts to thwart acts of terrorism, the growth of insurgency movements, and to allow for a more effective response to emergency situations.  In some instances, this special powers legislation has taken the form of martial law or curfews in the wake of a hydrological or seismological event, while in others it has resulted in significant changes to national law, protocol, and tradition.  In the United States, many on both sides of the political aisle point to the USA PATRIOT ACT as an example of special powers legislation – there are, however, differing views as to its efficacy and Constitutional legitimacy, and each side has its respective strengths and weaknesses.

There may also prove future instances where special powers legislation might be needed to enable a more robust response to, and recovery from, a catastrophic event.  Emergency managers at all levels of government may want to consider those scenarios under which special powers legislation might be needed, and what form this legislation would take.  In addition to curfews, special powers legislation might extend to containment and quarantine regulations and procedures, or to the handling of hundreds of thousands of decedent remains in an expeditious manner.  As part of their respective preparedness matrices, Emergency Management planners and policymakers may wish to consider the value and appropriateness of special powers legislation in advance of a catastrophic event.

What are your thoughts on the use of special or emergency powers legislation as a strategy and a tactic in the Emergency Management and Homeland Security communities?  Should there be limits to special powers legislation, and should all legislation of this type contain “sunset” or “renewal” clauses?  Is it possible that special powers legislation successfully prevents acts of terrorism?

Disaster Central welcomes your thoughts and insights.

Email this · Subscribe to this Feed · Bookmark This!

Posted by Disaster Central in Anti-Terrorism, Counter-Terrorism, Emergency Management Planning, Homeland Security. Comments Off

Disaster Central is also a resource for information relating to MCNY’s MPA program in Emergency Management and Homeland Security, as well as providing insight and commentary on the topics of Disaster Management, Emergency Management and Homeland Security.

McCain or Obama? Obama or McCain?

August 3, 2008

The 2008 US presidential election cycle is well underway.  Not surprisingly, the outcome of this election will have some (possibly major) effect on the Emergency Management and Homeland Security communities in the United States.  Whether you’re a supporter of (in alphabetical order) Senator John McCain or Senator Barack Obama, from an EM/HLS viewpoint, who do you think will prove a more effective leader for the EM and HLS fields?  Before responding, please consider those issues that impact the EM and HLS fields, including vision, funding, legislation, and loyalty.

Please note that Disaster Central’s professional standards prohibit interference in the political process through the providing of direct endorsements.  Disasters are non-partisan, and so is Disaster Central.  That does not, however, preclude Disaster Central’s readers from sharing their respective opinions of EM and HLS, and their relation to the 2008 US presidential election, in this blog.  We welcome your viewpoints.

Email this · Subscribe to this Feed · Bookmark This!

Posted by Disaster Central in Emergency Management Planning, Homeland Security. Comments Off

Disaster Central is also a resource for information relating to MCNY’s MPA program in Emergency Management and Homeland Security, as well as providing insight and commentary on the topics of Disaster Management, Emergency Management and Homeland Security.

MPA Emergency Management and Homeland Security Symposium

June 26, 2008

[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PSg2goHm_j4[/youtube]

The MPA program in Emergency and Disaster Management at Metropolitan College of New York (MCNY) was pleased to welcome Joseph F. Bruno, Commissioner of the New York City Office of Emergency Management (NYC OEM), as the keynote speaker for our first annual Emergency Management and Homeland Security Symposium.

Email this · Subscribe to this Feed · Bookmark This!

Posted by Disaster Central in Emergency Management Planning, Homeland Security, MCNY EDM Program, Videos. Comments Off

Disaster Central is also a resource for information relating to MCNY’s MPA program in Emergency Management and Homeland Security, as well as providing insight and commentary on the topics of Disaster Management, Emergency Management and Homeland Security.

« Previous Entries  

- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -

  • Mailing Address MCNY (431 Canal Street New York, NY 10013)
  • Phone Number  (800) 33 THINK | 212 343 1234