Immigrant of the Day: Feniosky Peña-Mora – Dean
Dominican-born Feniosky Peña-Mora came to America speaking no English when he was 21 and in a few months he will be the Dean of the School of Engineering and Applied Science at Columbia University. The appointment is prestigious enough that it was covered by the New York Times. The Times piece talks about how highly-regarded Dr. Peña-Mora is in the field:
“We had a very strong group of candidates for this position, but somehow Feni” — short for Feniosky — “just struck everyone as a person of extraordinary energy, enthusiasm and vision,” said Alan Brinkley, Columbia’s provost and the chairman of the search committee.
The story should be an inspiration to foreign graduate students of modest means coming from developing countries. For many of these F-1 students, managing to successfully manage finances, studies and pressures from both home and in adapting to a new society are a serious challenge. Congratulations Dr. Peña-Mora.