Program Institution: Cazenovia College
College/University: Cazenovia College
Major/Minor: Criminal Justice and Homeland
Graduation Date: 2009
Graduate School/University: John Jay College
of Criminal Justice
Major/Minor: M.S. Public Policy and Law Administration
Graduation Date: 2012
Employer: Red Hook Community Justice Center
Significant Professional or Academic Accomplishments:
CSTEP students are often passionate about the career paths
they have chosen. In asking Mouhamadou Diaman
to describe the direction his CSTEP field of study has taken
him, he wrote back with the following:
Upon graduating from Cazenovia College I have worked with
the Red Hook Community Justice Center's Public Safety Corp.
and its Juvenile Justice Corp as a case manager for the Red
Hook Youth Court. The Red Hook Youth Court is a peer led court
room that is run by teens between the ages of 14 to 18. The
concept is based on the philosophy of restorative justice
meaning, if one does harm to the community, the best way to
go about solving the situation is providing that individual
services to better themselves; in addition, the individual
may receive community service to fix the harm done to the
While working at the Red Hook Community Justice Center, I
was inspired by working with the many wonderful youths and
respondents. I have learned many teens are committing minor
crimes or getting involved in certain situations because they
feel as though they do not have a positive place to "hang
out" or someone to look up to as a role model. I started
volunteering with the New York Rescue Committee with a friend
of mine helping youth from different countries with their
homework. Within that journey my friend Aaron Clubb and I
have started DreamLine. We started by helping youth with their
homework; in addition, with DreamLine we created a leadership
group mentoring young men about leadership, about following
ones' dreams, being a great citizen, and serving ones community.
Furthermore, one of the main components of Dreamline is playing
soccer with the youth and helping them develop their skills.
It was a great way to connect with the youth. Currently, the
program is at halt because of funding reasons.
At Cazenovia College I majored in Criminal Justice and Homeland
Security and I was part of the Men's Soccer Team, CSTEP, HEOP,
and SOED. All these programs have served me well and strengthened
my leadership skills. At the moment, I am attending John Jay
College of Criminal Justice getting my Masters in Public Policy
and Law Administration. I am on my second year and, hopefully,
in May of 2012 I will be graduating with my Masters.
Mouhamadou was selected to give the Student Address for his
Student Address - Mouhamadou Diaman ’09
Cazenovia College’s 184th Commencement
Saturday, May 16, 2009
I want to thank Cazenovia College for this honor of
speaking to you today.
Welcome, 2009 graduates……friends….and
Coming to America was a new beginning for
me. I have crossed the Atlantic Ocean and traveled
thousands of miles away from my family, and friends in hope
of the American dream. I have left my country behind, while
my heart is still listening to the drums of Africa, the
drums of Senegal beating, like the ocean crashing to soar.
The English language was foreign to me and I felt like I
was in a jungle, the American jungle. I felt lost and felt
like the lonely star in the dark sky.
When I was twelve years old, I came to America and
it was the first time I met my real parents because I was
raised under the care of my aunt and uncle. I came to this
country with big hopes and dreams. Most importantly, to
start over, to flip the new page in my life and live in
the land I have once dreamed of.
Coming to Cazenovia college was a new beginning
for me. I was used to the fast pace life-style
of New York City, cars honking, and people rushing from
one place to another because in a big city like New York,
time is precious. My summer was cut short and I found myself
here in Cazenovia.
I felt lost in this new village, in this new school.
Throughout my whole life, I moved from one place to another…….from
the villages of Africa, to the crowded streets of New York
City, and to the quiet countryside of the village of Cazenovia.
A town so silent when somebody whispers your name you can
hear it from miles away.
However, time passed and Cazenovia has become a home
My message is no matter where you are from, no matter
what town or city you are from, a place you love
can become a true home.
Throughout, my four years here in Cazenovia, I have
met incredible people who are like family to me and without
them, I would not be here today. We all have met new people……..wonderful
professors, kind staff members, and great fellow students
who are like family to us. These people are the backbones
of our college experience and helped us when we were feeling
We have built relationships with each other. Our friends
We are accounting majors and aspiring actors. We are
athletes and criminal justice majors.
We are future teachers and business managers.
We are equestrians and future politicians.
However, most importantly, we are Caz college graduates.
Even though we may have different degrees and might all
be heading to different directions, the friendship and love
we have created with each other will last in our hearts
Coming to Cazenovia college was a new beginning,
for all of us. Four years ago, the members of the
class of 2009, started their new beginning, a beginning
of the fulfillment of each our dreams. We all have gained
the knowledge to step out there in the real world and face
the challenges. We may be feeling uncertain, nervous, and
scared. But remember, this is a new beginning to finding
our path. Today we are celebrating our accomplishments,
and we all should give ourselves a round of applause. Louis
L’amour, an American author, once said……”there
will come a time when you believe everything is finished.
That will be the beginning”
If today you are feeling it is finished, change
that thinking. This finish line of our graduation
is simply another beginning for the rest of our SPECTACULAR