Laguardia Community College

Organization Description

At LaGuardia Community College, we believe that a better world starts by asking "What if?" Since 1971, we’ve asked ”What if we opened the doors of higher education to create opportunities for all?” With the courage to challenge expectations and outdated ideas that only certain people should earn a college degree, we’ve attracted the brightest minds to teach the most underserved. Our drive to experiment motivates us to create more jobs in fields that need more people, and our steadfast commitment to change helps not only individual students, but also our society as a whole to evolve and prosper.

LaGuardia is a nationally recognized expert at pioneering innovative programs and initiatives that are rebuilding the middle class. Our faculty and staff dare to do more every day – so that students can write their own futures, immigrants can achieve their dreams, and small businesses learn how to grow and thrive.

We give our students, who come from over 150 countries to study together, the tools and inspiration to better understand their opportunities so they can re-imagine their futures.

Award-winning faculty –over half our faculty are PhD holders, that’s more than twice that of community college faculty nationwide- fosters a culture of critical thinking so that students can explore and experiment.

Participant Biographies

Dr. Tao Chen

I am an Assistant Professor of Mathematics at LaGuardia Community College, CUNY, in New York, NY. As an instructor at a community college, the courses I typically teach are developmental math courses, College Algebra, Calculus courses and Introduction to Differential Equations. I serve as the faculty coordinator for Elementary Algebra with another colleague. LaGuardia math department mainly provide service courses for students in Engineering, Sciences and Computer Science. At LaGuarda, business is the most popular major. We would love to integrate business and economics topics into the course College Algebra, and Calculus courses in the future.

I am very active in disciplinary projects at campus. I co-organize a yearly undergraduate interdisciplinary research symposium, and a research poster competition for honor students. Reading, Watching TV and conducting research take up all my non-work time.

Dr. Soloman Kone

As a dedicated teacher of introductory economics at LaGuardia Community College/CUNY, I offer students a dynamic approach to the learning of economics through the infusion of collaboration and technology. Over the years, I have taught Microeconomics, Macroeconomics, International Economics and Urban Economics.

Dr. Choon Shan Lai

My first teaching experience started in graduate school at Purdue University, Indiana when I was assigned to be an instructor for large classes of Introductory Economics courses. At first, my priority is to teach as much as I can and as well as I can what the curriculum states an undergraduate should know. Because of the amount of the materials I have to cover, I did not allocate much time for group discussions, lengthy interactions between myself and the students as those activities tend to be time consuming. Also as a graduate student and then later on a fresh Ph.D, I tended to teach in an Economist’ language which many students may not be able to relate to.