The Eugenio María de Hostos Community College Foundation 2022 Annual Scholarship Benefit on Wednesday, May 18, was a tremendous success, raising more than $315,000 in gifts and pledges to provide empowering support for Hostos students. Revelers enjoyed a beautiful evening overlooking the gleaming Long Island Sound from Glen Island Harbour Club. The sold-out event radiated with the resiliency and unity that has come to define Hostos, as trailblazers in education, development, finance, advocacy, and healthcare celebrated yet another exceptional year for the College.

(Back row left to right, José Sanchez-Kinghorn, Tomas Ramos, Derrick Lovett, David Gómez, Marcos Crespo, Henry Garrido, John Woelfling, and Carlos Naudon. Left to Right: Terry Lawson, Daisy Cocco De Filippis, Paloma Hernández, George Gresham)

Students, alumni, and College leadership shared resonating messages about the lasting impact of a Hostos degree, and prominent individuals and corporations were honored for their dedication to the health, growth, and prosperity of South Bronx residents. As Hostos President Daisy Cocco De Filippis remarked, Hostos Community College is a place where “community is central, students are considered our most sacred trust and our finest asset, and collaboration within and outside the confines of our immediate surroundings defines our actions.”

The evening’s speakers illuminated not just the impact of a degree, but the immutable value of the dedicated faculty and staff at Hostos, who do so much to promote student engagement, retention and success. Reflecting on her time at Hostos, Class of 2022 graduate Amdiya Kyemtore shared that when her statistics professor, Ramon Gómez, recognized her potential and asked her to be his college assistant, it completely changed her student experience, enabling her to quit her full-time job, engage in campus life, and even represent Hostos at the Model UN in Washington, D.C. Amdiya proudly announced that she will be continuing her education at Utica University as she pursues her goal to become a doctor of physical therapy. She concluded, “Because of my time at Hostos, I know I can.”

Amdiya and fellow student Yavor Ivanov both affirmed the significance of institutional scholarships in their academic journeys. As Yavor explained, “I was at a point where I had to choose between work or school, so I was ready to take a break from school when I got the scholarship.” All proceeds from the event fund scholarships and student success initiatives, so the College can continue to provide this vital support that empowers students like Amdiya and Yavor to persist toward their goals.

(Left to Right) Thomas Isekenegbe, Felix Matos Rodríguez, Carlos Naudon, Daisy Cocco De Filippis, Madeline Marquez, Amdiya Kyemtore
(Left to Right: Thomas Isekenegbe, Felix Matos Rodríguez, Carlos Naudon, Daisy Cocco De Filippis, Madeline Marquez, Amdiya Kyemtore.)

The night was full of laughs, heartfelt gratitude, and exciting announcements that hold great promise for Hostos and many of our City University of New York (CUNY) Colleges. In his delightful speech sharing how his time at City College paved his successful future, Henry Garrido of District Council 37 made a pledge to create new scholarships for CUNY students. Following their commitment to investing in the underserved, Carlos Naudon and Madeline Marquez of Ponce Bank announced an astounding $60,000 annual pledge to support CUNY students in the boroughs where Ponce Bank has branches. Terry Lawson and Paloma Izquierdo-Hernández recognized that while there is still much work to be done to create an equitable future, the community’s trust in Hostos enables it to be a true catalyst for progress.

The Foundation would like to extend a final word of gratitude and commendation to the distinguished honorees: former Hostos President Dr. David Gómez; Executive Director of District Council 37, Henry Garrido; President of 1199SEIU United Healthcare Workers East, George Gresham; President and CEO of Urban Health Plan, Paloma Hernández; Executive Director of UnLocal, Terry Lawson; President and CEO of MBD Community Housing Corporation, Derrick Lovett; Vice President of Development at Trinity Financial, Thomas Brown; Montefiore Einstein; President and CEO of Ponce Bank and Ponce Financial Group, Inc., Carlos Naudon; and Founder and President of the Oyate Group’s Bronx Rising Initiative, Tomas Ramos. Each of these corporations and individuals has made remarkable contributions in this community that positively impact Hostos students and, indeed, the entire city. Hostos is proud to be a neighbor and partner – employing union workers, serving as a community hub for activism, educating the next generation of leaders, and advocating for justice and equity in this community and beyond.

The Foundation is thankful for everyone who helped to make this Benefit possible. The Hostos Division of Institutional Advancement, under the direction of Vice President Colette Atkins and through the ceaseless effort of Development Manager Idelsa Méndez, executed a delightful and memorable event. Musicians Jonatan Suriel, Jay & Lee – Rumba Flamenca, and DJ Ralphie Mercado made the evening festive, all of the speakers shared thoughtful insights, and emcee Jessica Cunnington of NBC 4 New York kept the extensive program moving along in a timely and jovial fashion. Of course, the Foundation also wishes to acknowledge the generous partners who have been instrumental in the success of this Benefit, including Premium Event Sponsor, Stavros Niarchos Foundation; Presenting Sponsor, BronxCare Health System; Community Sponsors, 1199SEIU – United Healthcare Workers East, Friends of the Chairman of the Hostos Community College Foundation, Montefiore Einstein, Somos Community Care, and Unitex; our many Ambassador and Friend Sponsors; and all of the enthusiastic attendees.
This event, like all events hosted by the Foundation, serve to further the mission of Hostos Community College to create accessible higher education opportunities for all who seek them. To quote President Daisy Cocco De Filippis once again, “Community college students provide us with an opportunity to contribute to the betterment of society and feel that we will share in a future that will not be ours and where we may not go, but whose rich harvest will have been ensured by the seeds that we plant today.” To see pictures from the event, visit and to make a gift today to this transformative institution and its incredible students, please visit

About Hostos Community College
Hostos Community College is an educational agent for change, transforming and improving the quality of life in the South Bronx and neighboring communities since 1968. Hostos serves as a gateway to intellectual growth and socioeconomic mobility, and a point of departure for lifelong learning, success in professional careers, and transfer to advanced higher education programs. The College’s unique “student success coach” program, which partners students with individualized guidance, is emblematic of the premier emphasis on student support and services.
Hostos offers 28 associate degree programs and 2 certificate programs that facilitate easy transfer to The City University of New York (CUNY) four-year colleges or baccalaureate studies at other institutions. The College has an award-winning Division of Continuing Education & Workforce Development that offers professional development courses and certificate-bearing workforce training programs. The Hostos Center for the Arts & Culture (HCAC) is one of the pre-eminent Latino arts centers of the northeast. The HCAC has distinguished itself for showcasing traditional art forms as well as emerging and internationally renowned artists.
Hostos Community College is part of CUNY, the nation’s leading urban public university serving more than 500,000 students at 25 colleges.