Professor, Division of Social Sciences

Mercy College



Over the past 30 years, Dorothy Balancio's commitment to education has remained steadfast. She's taught 4th and 6th graders; she's taught special education and CCD; and for over 25 years, she has been a dedicated and distinguished professor at Mercy College. She has also taught Master's degree programs at Long Island University and Queens College.


In addition to her passion for education, Dorothy has unparalleled commitment to being an agent of positive social change. She has been the Research Project Director at the Social Research Center in Yonkers, New York, since 1974. There, she is responsible for developing programs to aid in crisis counseling, stress management, and listening and negotiating training. Since 1984, she has also been a Senior Trainer at Lee Hecht Harrison where she teaches the fundamentals of career searching, from resume writing to interview techniques. 

In addition to receiving her Bachelor's degree from Mercy in 1968, Dorothy has gone on and completed three Master's degree programs and earned her Ph.D. in Sociology from the Graduate Center of CUNY. She's also got certifications in Management Training, Career Counseling, and is a certified family life course educator with the National Council of Family Relations.


Dorothy's list of commendations include the 1999 “Fieri Award for Outstanding Contributions to Youth," the “Excellence in Teaching” award in 1997 from Mercy College, the “Distinguished Service" award from the Italian Government in 1996, and “Woman of the Year” from the American Committee on Italian Migration in 1992. 

Perhaps Dorothy's most important and meaningful endeavor is that which began after the 1994 high-profile murder of her son Louis. Dorothy has since become an efficacious advocate for victim's rights and is tireless in her pursuit of assisting homicide survivors through grief counseling. She has also instituted the Mercy College Louis Balancio Scholarship Fund in memory of Louis who was a student at Mercy at the time he died.