NEW YORK, NY- September 21, 2010 – Metropolitan College of New York (MCNY) launched its program to help Haiti recover from January’s disastrous earthquake by honoring six Haitians on full MCNY Graduate scholarships in Emergency and Disaster Management.  Vinton Thompson, MCNY’s President, and City Councilmen Mathieu Eugene of Brooklyn (who has played a crucial role in the development and implementation of the Haitian scholarship program) co-hosted the awards ceremony Thursday, September 16, 2010 at Brooklyn Borough Hall.

“On January 12 of this year, when that catastrophic event hit Haiti, our faculty and staff asked what MCNY could do to help,” said President Thompson.  “We are in a unique position to not only help train Haitians about how to rebuild their country, but to help them learn how to prepare more effectively for the future.   We are very proud of our MPA in Emergency and Disaster Management program, and even more proud of the commitment shown by these Haitian students to return and rebuild the country they passionately love.”

The six students selected to participate in MCNY’s first Emergency & Disaster Management Graduate Program are as follows:

  • Elie Jérôme is a 2008 graduate of the American University of Modern Science of Haiti and sees himself as a leader who will positively influence others to become leaders.  Mr. Jérôme’s is a founding member of Joindre Ensemble, an organization which educates youth on issues ranging from health to national security.
  • Ingrid St-Firmin, a native of Port-au-Prince, is a healthcare business professional; she now has a desire to change her focus to aid in the development of Haiti.  She plans to work toward shaping new policies that will help improve response times and develop plans for emergencies in areas of Haiti.
  • Tamara Olicœur, a native of Port-au-Prince, worked as a Medical Assistant and most recently with the poverty relief organization, TEARFUND, as an Education Supervisor.  She plans to use her degree in Emergency and Disaster Management to develop training programs that will be taught and implemented in schools, churches, hospitals and community health centers throughout Haiti.
  • Nousta Audate Dieudonné, from the city of Cap-Haïtien, worked as a Logistics Officer for TEARFUND, helping the Haitian community rebuild after the earthquake.  She has a degree in Industrial Engineering.  She is optimistic about Haiti’s future and looks forward to working with individuals in her country to prepare themselves for any future disastrous events.
  • Garmalia Mentorhails from the city of Cap-Haïtien. She is a medical doctor practicing in Port-au-Prince who played a crucial role in delivering medical services to victims during the earthquake. She wants to expand her knowledge beyond medicine by learning how to manage a major natural disaster and create strategies that deliver medical services in emergency situations.
  • Lenève Julien, from the rural municipality of Camp-Perrin, worked as a consultant for various organizations dealing with rural development.  He is looking forward to studying Emergency and Disaster Management.  Lenève’s focus will be on rural issues that affect the capacity to respond to emergency situations.

“Our goal is to educate and train fresh new leaders to institutionalize emergency management in Haiti,” said Ali Gheith, Director of MCNY’s Emergency and Disaster Management Program.  “Upon their graduation, these six dynamic individuals will return to Haiti to shape and provide new direction for emergency management.  They will bring more coherence and clout and will deepen their involvement in rebuilding a better Haiti.”

MCNY’s 16-Month Master’s of Public Administration in Emergency and Disaster Management is a highly specialized degree that covers planning, management, logistics, response, relief, recovery and economics associated with managing emergency situations.  Examples of classes within this program include the “Economics of Hazards and Disasters,” “Public Health Systems and Preparedness, “Terrorism and Disaster Management” and Organizational and Municipal Continuity Planning.” The scholarship program also incorporates MCNY’s Constructive Action curriculum that works to develop a “hands on” comprehensive emergency management experience and plan that can be adapted and implemented in Haiti.

For more information on MCNY its Emergency and Disaster Management program, visit or call 800.33.THINK.