St. Francis College Announces Third Cohort of Fellows
The Fellows Program will bring to St. Francis College (SFC) during the 2022-2023 academic year five outstanding professionals with expertise in human rights, global anti-Muslim racism and Islamophobia, ethical and spiritual dimensions of human rights, politically and socially engaged art, and digital media and broadcasting.
“I am thrilled to welcome this third cohort of exceptional scholars and practitioners to St. Francis. Their partnership in centering human rights education and cutting-edge developments in technology and communication for our students is tremendously important,” stated Dr. Miguel Martinez-Saenz, President of St. Francis College.
"The Fellows we invite into the SFC family bring professional experiences and points of view that complement our faculty experts. They provide new perspectives and opportunities to learn, building ties between the College and people and organizations around the world," commented Dr. Jennifer Lancaster, Vice-President for Academic Affairs.
“Engaged learning for human rights and global citizenship is a hallmark of the SFC Human Rights Program. We are delighted to welcome the new Human Rights Fellows, who will contribute in very interesting and diverse ways to enriched education of our students in a turbulent world,” said Dr. Reza Fakhari, Vice-President for Internationalization and recent chair of Amnesty International USA.
The third cohort of the Fellows includes two Teaching Fellows and three Franciscan Service Fellows.
Farid Hafez, Ph.D., who will serve as the Teaching Fellow in Human Rights, is currently the Class of 1955 Visiting Professor of International Studies at Williams College. He is also a non-resident research fellow at Georgetown University’s The Bridge Initiative. Previously, he was a senior researcher at the University of Salzburg and University of Vienna. In 2017, he was a Fulbright visiting professor at the University of California, Berkeley, and, in 2014, visiting scholar at Columbia University. He has been a member of the faculty at the Global Citizenship Alliance in Salzburg and has taught in Turkey and Indonesia. His expertise and research interests are wide-ranging, including Islamic political thought, migration and racism, human rights, theories of democracy, human rights and democracy, Muslim minorities in the West, Islam in the media, and religion, politics and society. He has published more than 100 books, chapters and academic articles.
The Rev. Ana Levy-Lyons, M.Div., who will serve as a Teaching Fellow, is a writer, activist and senior minister of First Unitarian Universalist Congregational Society in Brooklyn. She brings to her ministry a passion for social and environmental justice and a belief in the power of liberal religion to transform our world. She also brings a love of creative, embodied, music-centered worship from a previous life as a musician. She has won numerous awards for her sermons, including the Borden Sermon Award, the Jerry Davidoff Sermon Award and the Dana Greeley Sermon Award. She is the author of the book No Other Gods: The Politics of the Ten Commandments (2018), which a prominent rabbi praised as providing “spiritual grounding for engagement with political realities we face today.” Her work has appeared in UU World, Yes!, Truthout and Tikkun magazine, where she is a contributing editor. Rev. Levy-Lyons holds a Master of Divinity degree from the University of Chicago and a B.A. in music from Brown University. She is currently a rabbinical student at ALEPH Ordination Program, active in interfaith dialogue and a participant in the Brooklyn Heights Interfaith Clergy Association.
Pedro X. Molina, who will serve as a Franciscan Service Fellow in Human Rights, is a Nicaraguan political cartoonist. He is currently an Institute of International Education (IIE) Artist Protection Fund fellow and visiting critic in the Einaudi Center’s Latin American and Caribbean Studies Program at Cornell University. Before that, Molina was a resident artist of the Ithaca City of Asylum and a visiting scholar at Ithaca College, from 2019 until 2021. In Nicaragua, Molina's cartoons regularly skewered the government of President Daniel Ortega. He fled the country in December 2018 with his family, after government forces raided and occupied the offices of his main outlet, Confidencial. He continues to produce cartoons for Confidencial and has been published in the Washington Post, Los Angeles Times, Chicago Tribune, Courrier International (France) and many other publications. In 2019, he received the Maria Moors Cabot Prize, awarded by Columbia Journalism School for “career excellence and coverage of the Western Hemisphere that further inter-American understanding.” His work has also been recognized with the 2021 Gabo Award for Excellence, one of the most prestigious journalism prizes in Latin America, established by the late Nobel laureate Gabriel García Márquez.
Marc Ernay will serve as a Franciscan Fellow. He is 1010 WINS’ sports director and morning-drive anchor, positions he has held since January 2012. A graduate of Hofstra University, he has covered over the course of his career multiple Super Bowls, World Series, MLB All-Star Games and NBA and NHL Finals, as well as Big East, Big Ten, ACC and NCAA basketball tournaments, U.S. Open Tennis Championships and major golf tournaments, including The Northern Trust (formerly The Barclays), PGA Championship and U.S. Open. Ernay also hosts the "On the Marc" video and podcast series and mans the finish line in Central Park for 1010 WINS’ annual coverage of the New York City Marathon.
Mitch Jacobson will be serving as a Franciscan Fellow and designing SFC’s new TV studio. He is an award-winning filmmaker who produces, directs and edits television programs and live events for broadcast networks, streaming-media services and Fortune 500 production companies. His New York City–based project studio, Category 5 Entertainment, has created programs for ABC, PBS, MTV, BET, Google, Amazon, Samsung, World Economic Forum, Asia Society, New Yorker magazine and Kevin Hart Productions. Jacobson is also an educator, consultant and published author of the textbook Mastering Multi-Camera Techniques: From Pre-Production to Editing and Deliverables (Focal Press), an adjunct professor at the School of Visual Arts (SVA) and a mentor at the Frank Sinatra School of the Arts and the City of New York's Reel Works after-school program, where he inspires and empowers underserved youth to share their stories through filmmaking. A member of the Motion Picture Editors Guild, Jacobson is an authorized trainer for Blackmagic Design's DaVinci Resolve and NewTek's TriCasters.
The courses that Dr. Hafez and Rev. Levy-Lyons will develop and teach in collaboration with full-time faculty will be among those that fulfill the requirements of the new Human Rights minor at SFC, while Mr. Ernay will collaborate with the faculty in Communication Arts to devise or revise digital media, broadcasting and TV studio production courses and programming. The Fellows will also present in SFC's Human Rights Lecture Series, give special talks, visit classes and mentor students. Artist Molina will exhibit his work at the new campus, serve as a flash artist-in-residence, explain his displayed political cartoons at scheduled times for students and visit classes.