First and foremost, he was a great teacher

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He went on to become dean of the uptown campus. He was at the helm when the university sold the property, and it became Bronx Community College. Professor Oliva then moved downtown and shepherded the university from a “village” campus to a sprawling New York City university, a world-class institution with 51,000 students.

For me, he lighted the lamp that still burns. He and his great colleagues at NYU Uptown taught me how to study and why. I couldn’t have come to love learning as much as I do without their guidance. What an inspiration. What a great life lived.

Copyright © 2014 Randi Kreiss. Randi can be reached at

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