Center for Community Solutions

Center for Community Solutions

St. Joseph's College has been transforming lives since 1916 — not only the lives of students, but the lives of those who reside within the local and global communities as well.

Addressing A Growing Concern

This necessity for a Center for Community Solutions is especially accentuated in light of recent reports and data, which confirm that many residents of Nassau and Suffolk Counties are leaving, and many still here are expressing a desire to leave.

The dynamics here are quite complicated, and so it is clear that the challenges are too complex for any single actor or entity to fully address, nor are solutions to be found in isolation. A key premise of the Center is that issues of housing, education, public health and wellness, hospitality (for visitors) and livability (for inhabitants), values, and education are fundamental to vibrant communities.

We know that dramatic, community-wide progress on even a single problem as complex as livability crosses numerous community issues and requires the engagement of all sectors — colleges, nonprofits, businesses, philanthropic organizations and governmental entities — all pulling together, and in a common direction.

An Institutional Goal

Given the broad range of pivotal community issues, the Center will consist of Institutes devoted to specific areas important to community building: the Institute for Hospitality and Tourism Management (IHTM), the Institute for Attainable Homes, the Institute for Community Health and Wellness, the Institute for Ethics and Social Justice, and the Institute for Religion in Community Life.

Each of these Institutes will work closely with specific community sectors, specifically as related to thematically-defined problems, but there will be cross-fertilization across the Institutes. The structure is intentional by design, based on research that identifies the common characteristics of success shared by the most effective collaborative ventures:

  • A shared vision and agenda
  • Effective leadership and governance
  • Deliberate alignment of resources, programs, and advocacy using evidence-based strategies
  • Dedicated capacity and appropriate structure
  • Sufficient resources

To ensure results, the Center will function less as a think tank (talking about and writing about problems and issues) and more as an incubator: a venue or space where we bring together scholars, professionals, civic leaders, and public officials, to both research issues, but then to actively work with communities to solve issues.

Contact Information

To learn more, contact Kara Felton (kfelton@sjcny.edu) at 631.687.2402.

Learn more about our Institutes:

Institute for Hospitality and Tourism Management Image

Institute for Hospitality and Tourism Management

Providing a leading voice in discussions of responsible tourism and hospitality. Click here to learn more.

Institute for the Study of Religion in Community Life Image

Institute for the Study of Religion in Community Life

Investigating the roles religious institutions can take to enhance community life. Click here to learn more.

Institute for Attainable Homes Image

Institute for Attainable Homes

Paving the way for Long Island residents to remain here in the region. Click here to learn more.

Institute for Community Health and Wellness Image

Institute for Community Health and Wellness

Bringing health care trends, awareness and initiatives to Long Islanders. Click here to learn more.

Our Vision of Communities


The theme of Transforming Communities is reflected in the school's mission, in our motto (Esse Non Videri: “To be, and not to seem”) and in its five core values: Integrity, Spirituality, Intellectual Curiosity, Social Responsibility and Service.

Simply put, St. Joseph’s College was founded on the principles of social justice, and that principle is infused into everything that we do.  

What better way, then, to embody our mission, motto and values than by establishing a Center for Community Solutions, with the mission of bettering the lives of local communities?