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QCC wins prize for promoting technology in classrooms

A bilingual consortium that focuses on Hispanic education honored Bayside’s Queensborough Community College for its teaching practices and use of technology in the classroom during a conference in Puerto Rico earlier this month.

The school, at 222-05 56th Ave. in Bayside, was awarded the “Best Practices in Teaching and Learning Through Technology” prize at a conference held by the Hispanic Educational Technology Services in San Juan Feb. 8, said Michele Cuomo, Queensborough’s assistant dean of academic affairs as well as an associate professor in the speech communications and theatre arts departments.

“Learning through their native digital language helps all students make connections across academic disciplines and creates a sense of belonging and meaning,” Cuomo said.

Hispanic Educational Technology Services is the first bilingual association dedicated to the higher education needs of Hispanic communities. The group, founded in 1993, also emphasizes the use of technology to allow wider collaboration among students at educational institutions.

Students from Queensborough’s Basic Educational Skills, English and Speech Communications as well as theatre arts programs collaborated on a project during which they created multimedia digital stories through images, film, music, voice and text.

The Basic Educational students focused on the development of writing skills, while the Theatre Arts students created performance pieces from their fellow students’ writing in the form of video logs.

One component of the project, known as the Student Interdisciplinary Wiki Project, involved theater students posting interview questions for the writing students in order to influence their performances as actors.

Several of the video logs presented at the conference in Puerto Rico include “Ghetto Home World” by students Kelsey Velilla and Billy Jno Hope as well as “Memories of My Mother,” also by Velilla.

Cuomo wrote the proposal for the collaborative effort, titled “Culture and Family: The Digital Storytelling Project.”

Reach reporter Nathan Duke by e-mail at nduke@cnglocal.com or by phone at (718) 260-4566.

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