SBL Graduate Success Spotlight – C Davis

SBL Graduate Success Spotlight – C Davis

We’re happy to celebrate SBL graduate success!

Crystal Davis is the Assistant Principal / Co-Director at the Institute for Health Professions at Cambria Heights, and a graduate of Cohort 44 of the College of St. Rose SBL (School Building Leader) Program.  We recently got the opportunity to catch up with Crystal about her training, and the opportunities and challenges of her new position.

From the Institute Website:

The Institute for Health Professions at Cambria Heights (The Institute) is a Career and Technical Education high school that prepares students for college and careers in medicine. Our students will take their learning beyond the classroom by collaboratively solving problems and completing projects based on the real world. By setting goals, solving problems, and completing challenging  projects, students will take college level classes and earn certification in either Emergency Medical Services or Nurse Assisting before attending two and four-year colleges.

Here is our interview with Crystal — 

Tell us about your new job — what are your responsibilities?  In my administrative role, I am an instructional leader for a 35 person staff and student body of 300 high school students.

What makes your school unique? The Institute for Health Professions at Cambria Heights is a Career and Technical Education high school that offers Emergency Medical Technician and Nurse Assisting Certificate Programs.  As a school in its 3rd year, we are excited about our first graduating class (next year) of future medical professionals.  Our school culture provides a nurturing environment that utilizes restorative justice practices in all aspects of our school community. 

How is working in a medically oriented school different? The vast majority of students in our school have health-related career aspirations.  The direct alignment of our course offerings with student interest and professional goals increases student engagement.  Through our partnerships with North Shore LIJ’s Center for Learning and Innovation, Hofstra University, and the Institute for Student Achievement, we are able to enrich our students’ academic experiences through guest speakers, medical simulations, health fairs, and trips.

What kind of mentoring do you set up for students?

Our comprehensive advisory program consists of weekly circle discussions, along with college and career preparation.  Through our advisory program, teachers serve as mentors to a small group of students and a liaison between the family and the school.  Additionally, through community partnerships, our students participate in mentoring programs offered at our school on weekends.

How did your CITE program ready you for this job? 

The CITE program prepared me to shift my view to that of an administrator.  Through the courses offered, I was able to look at the decision making process using a broader lens.  Systems theory, curriculum development, budgeting, and school law have provided foundational knowledge for my current position.  My cohort had a special bond and we had really high quality professors who paired their professional experiences with the theory that we studied. The quality of our class discussions challenged my thinking and has led to constant reflection in my new position.

What are the challenges of your new job? There are not enough hours in the day to accomplish everything that I want to accomplish in my new job.  I am working on pacing and prioritizing the increased demands on time. 

Is there a particular issue in education you feel strongly about? 

I am a strong advocate for the use of restorative justice practices in the school community. I feel that these practices must include prevention, intervention, and post-intervention strategies in order to be successful.  At my school, I facilitated our Restorative Justice program, which includes a Fairness Committee that intervenes when a member of the school community violates the school’s character principles or core values.  We have had great success in establishing a supportive school culture where students feel valued.

Anything else you’d like to add? 

 I am grateful for the quality of education that I received with CITE and highly recommend the program. 

CITE is the Center for Integrated Training and Education . For over 25 years, CITE has and continues to train TEACHERS (Early Childhood, Professional Certification, Special Ed, Grad Courses, DASA); COUNSELORS (School, Mental Health Masters, Advanced Certificate); and ADMINISTRATORS (SBL, SDL, Public Admin, Doctorate) in all five boroughs of NYC, Yonkers, and Long Island.

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