Archive for the ‘Commencement’ Category

Bosnian University Celebrates Dual Commencement with SUNY Canton

Friday, June 11th, 2010

Nearly two dozen students attending American University in Bosnia Herzegovina (AUBiH) graduate this week with a degree from their home university and one from SUNY Canton.

SUNY Canton President Joseph L. Kennedy and Chief of Staff Ryan P. Deuel are attending AUBiH’s commencement on Wednesday, June 9. The two are already in Bosnia to discuss the progression and growth of the dual-degree program.

Live video feed from American University in Bosnia during the 2010 Commencement ceremony.

“Our two colleges have developed a strong bond through our shared students,” SUNY Canton President Joseph L. Kennedy. “We were honored that they could participate in our on-campus commencement ceremony via live video feed. We are dually privileged to attend their graduation, and we’re looking forward to even more students from AUBIH enrolled at SUNY Canton in the future.”

The students are the first from their University to earn a SUNY Canton bachelor’s degree in finance and a degree from their home university. Most of the students graduating spent last summer at the SUNY Canton campus taking face-to-face classes with Associate Professor Charles R. Fenner, Ph.D., who oversees the management program.

Dubravko Martinović, one of the top students at AUBIH, addressed his classmates, local and abroad, at SUNY Canton’s Commencement. “To be the first at something gives one great satisfaction, and we are proud to be the first generation of graduates from AUBIH,” he said. “I want to thank you for four memorable years, and an unforgettable semester spent at SUNY (Canton). For us, it was never just an education, it was a life experience.”

Students at AUBiH had the chance to meet with U.S. Deputy Secretary of State James Steinberg, during a recent visit.

“Your task is to help your country on its journey towards the better future and economic prosperity, and you are its hope,” Steinberg said. “Your destiny is to be a part of European Union and NATO, to belong to a great community of the world, but that demands time, hard work and dedication on the part of all of you.”

Media inquiries should be directed to Gregory Kie, Media Relations Coordinator, or call 315/386-7528.


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SUNY Canton Commencement Graduates 700 Students

Saturday, May 22nd, 2010

View Commencement Video

Among the 700 graduates who had their degrees conferred at SUNY Canton’s 102nd commencement ceremony were two students whose friendship extended far beyond the normal realm of college roommates.

Marquise Paillere of Port-au-Prince, Haiti, who received an associate degree in individual studies, and Xiaoli Zhang of Hefei, China, who received a bachelor’s degree in management, both received the Presidential Recognition Award for their efforts leading to the creation of the SUNY Canton Haitian Student Relief fund.

“We applaud the individual and collective accomplishments of all of our graduates,” said SUNY Canton President Joseph L. Kennedy. “During the years that these graduates have attended SUNY Canton, our College has grown tremendously. They have helped to shape our College for years to come.”

Other commencement highlights included:

  • Approximately 20 students in Bosnia joined commencement via live video feed. Students from the American University in Bosnia Herzegovina received their bachelor’s degrees in finance alongside their classmates at SUNY Canton. In some cases, this will be the first time that the two contingents have ever met.
  • Student athletes Julie Vander Wiel, a legal studies graduate from Malone, and Mark Talamo, a management graduate from Oswego, both recently won awards from the SUNY Canton Kangaroo’s Athletic Department. Vander Wiel, who played basketball for four years, received the Nicole Fleury Memorial Leadership Award and the SUNY Chancellor’s Scholar-Athlete Award. Talamo, who played hockey for four years, won the Alden Chadwick Memorial Leadership Award.
  • Three graduates earned a diploma and a badge, having graduated from the SUNY Canton David Sullivan St. Lawrence County Law Enforcement Academy the day before Commencement. Ian M. Vanier of Malone is a sworn officer of the Norfolk Police Department and a criminal investigation graduate; Jason A. Streeter of Canton is a sworn officer of the Antwerp Police Department and a Criminal Investigation graduate, and Jennifer A. Amo of Ogdensburg is a sworn police officer of the Antwerp Police Department and a criminal justice graduate.
  • All of the graduates of the nursing program were honored at a special pinning ceremony following commencement. Family members and influential friends were invited to present each nursing graduate with their ceremonial pin denoting their profession.

The College’s largest and most popular bachelor’s degree program was criminal investigation with 28 graduates. Finance saw 23 graduates, and management 22.

Two associate degree programs tied with the most graduates this year. Both nursing and criminal justice had 67 graduates. The third largest program was veterinary science technology with 49 graduates.

Media inquiries should be directed to Gregory Kie, Media Relations Coordinator, or call 315/386-7528.

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SUNY Canton Staff Member Earns Recognition from Students

Wednesday, May 19th, 2010

The director of accommodative services at SUNY Canton is being recognized for going above and beyond to inspire and assist all students at the College.

M. Veigh Mehan Lee is the recipient of the 2010 Northstar Award, an honor that is given by the students annually to a faculty or staff member who makes the College a better place. Lee will be among the honorees and award recipients to be recognized during Commencement at 10:30 a.m. on Saturday, May 22, in an outdoor ceremony adjacent to the Richard W. Miller Campus Center.

Lee is responsible for determining, coordinating and managing services for students with disabilities. She also coordinates tutoring services for all students.

Many students credit their academic and personal successes to her hard work, according to the numerous nominations submitted on her behalf. For several students, she has served as an excellent advocate. She’s helped students with hearing impairments get new hearing aids when all other avenues were closed, and she’s assisted students in learning how best to be a successful student.

“Veigh Lee has gone above and beyond her line of work to make me a better student,” said  an industrial technology management student at the College. “Whether it’s speaking with faculty, scheduling classes or even making sure I have a place to live while attending SUNY Canton, she does everything with a warm smile. She has had an impact on me and my family, and it will be felt for the rest of our lives.”

She’s a member of the College’s Retention Committee, the Green Campus Committee, the Peace Garden Committee and serves as advisor for the Delta Kappa Sigma fraternity. She is a member of the American Counseling Association, enjoys creating and teaching calligraphy and is a member of the Calligraphy Society of Ottawa.

Lee earned her associate degree in liberal arts from Maria College, her bachelor’s degree in art with a minor in education from Damien College, and her master’s of education in counseling and human development from St. Lawrence University. Lee is currently working on her second master’s from St. Lawrence and will complete the mental health counseling program in May 2011.

Media inquiries should be directed to Gregory Kie, Media Relations Coordinator, or call 315/386-7528.


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SUNY Canton Hockey Club President Earns Recognition

Tuesday, May 18th, 2010

A SUNY Canton nursing student who started the College’s first competitive club sports team is being honored for his leadership and work ethic.

Edward A. (Eddie) Brown of Massena is the College’s recipient of the annual David R. Maynard Student Activities Award. He will be among the honorees and award recipients to be recognized during Commencement at 10:30 a.m. on Saturday, May 22 in an outdoor ceremony adjacent to the Richard W. Miller Campus Center.

Two years ago, Brown’s passion for ice hockey led him to SUNY Canton Varsity Hockey Head Coach Eric McCambly, who pitched the idea of starting a club hockey team in addition to the College’s varsity squad. Since, Brown has served as the club team president and its membership has grown to 50 members. He has orchestrated several fundraising events, put together travel accommodations and has been responsible for game day operations while helping the team gain membership into the Upstate New York Collegiate Hockey League. He also plays for the squad.

“Ed Brown has been the foundation and glue in helping develop and shape the SUNY Canton Ice Hockey Club,” McCambly said. “He is invaluable because of his outstanding attitude, dependability, loyalty, and work ethic. These qualities and the amount of work and time he has put into the club, all while going to class full-time, demonstrates how special he is, making him deserving of this award.”

Brown is currently enrolled full-time in the nursing program at the College. He has helped other competitive club teams flourish on campus while also participating in student government.  Following graduation, he plans to continue his education and become a pediatric nurse practitioner.

A father of two, Brown is currently employed at Massena Memorial Hospital as a Health Unit Coordinator and at Canton-Potsdam Hospital as a Ward Clerk/Monitor Technician. He is also a former Chaplain’s Assistant in the U.S. Army. He is engaged to Linda H. Akatsu of Torrance, Calif., a 2009 veterinary science technology graduate.

The David R. Maynard Student Activities Award is given annually to a student who demonstrates superior citizenship, outstanding leadership, and who has generously given time to extracurricular activities.

Media inquiries should be directed to Gregory Kie, Media Relations Coordinator, or call 315/386-7528.


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SUNY Canton Honors Former St. Lawrence University President

Monday, May 17th, 2010

SUNY Canton will present St. Lawrence University President Emeritus Daniel F. Sullivan with an Honorary Doctorate at the College’s Commencement Ceremony.

Sullivan’s tireless efforts as an academician and administrator have dramatically improved the quality of life in the North Country and positively affected the growth and reputation of education throughout the area.

“We are recognizing Dr. Sullivan with an honorary degree to formally thank him for his lifelong commitment and relentless hard work for the people of the North Country,” SUNY Canton President Joseph L. Kennedy said. “He’s furthered opportunities for North Country students of all ages and has been a leader and promoter for business growth and economic development.”

Sullivan began his career as the 17th president of St. Lawrence in 1996. During his tenure, he had a direct impact on the continued growth of Canton, St. Lawrence County, and the surrounding North Country communities. On numerous occasions, Sullivan and Kennedy have partnered with local community and business leaders on initiatives to facilitate improvements for the community at large.

“Dr. Sullivan has been an active supporter and participant in SUNY Canton’s growth and quick to embrace the symbiotic relationship between the two campuses and how it benefits our area,” Kennedy said. “The relationship is a unique public-private alliance and both colleges promote each other’s success and the success of our community.”

Among Sullivan’s numerous accomplishments was the creation of the Canton Initiative, a program that helped strengthen the ties between higher education and the community.

“What an unusual, special partnership St. Lawrence and SUNY Canton, and Joe Kennedy and I, have had over the past 13 years as we have sought together to improve the economic and quality of life vitality of the North Country,” said Sullivan. “Collaborations between public and private universities, such as ours, are rare nationally, but they need to become much less rare. I am deeply honored to be recognized in this way by an institution that has come to mean a great deal to me.”

In 2003, St. Lawrence hosted the inaugural North Country Symposium, bringing together local and regional business owners and stakeholders to develop ways to benefit life in Northern New York. The University hosted its eighth symposium this spring with steering committee input from SUNY Canton employees.

Sullivan, a 1965 graduate of St. Lawrence, received his Ph.D. in sociology from Columbia University in 1971. He was an Edward John Noble Fellow and a National Science Foundation Graduate Fellow. In 1971, he joined the faculty of Carleton College in Minnesota, and in 1979 became Vice President for Planning and Development and Associate Professor of Sociology there. He became President and Professor of Sociology at Allegheny College in 1986. In addition, he spent 1974-76 at Cornell University as a senior research associate and assistant professor of sociology on leave from Carleton.

In addition to his work with the local communities, he oversaw the expansion of St. Lawrence’s academic programs, including several new majors and international study programs. During his presidency, 25 different facilities were created or transformed, including the $36.9 million Johnson Hall of Science. Sullivan was also at the forefront of two of St. Lawrence’s capital campaigns, both the largest in the University’s history.

He and his wife, Ann, currently reside in Colton and are both still active members in the community.

SUNY Canton’s 102nd Commencement Ceremony will be conducted outside at 10:30 a.m. Saturday, May 22, adjacent to the Richard W. Miller Campus Center.

Media inquiries should be directed to Gregory Kie, Media Relations Coordinator, or call 315/386-7528.


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SUNY Canton to Honor Rich with Distinguished Citizen Award

Thursday, May 13th, 2010

SUNY Canton will be honoring a long-time advocate for developmentally disabled people in Northern New York with the College’s Distinguished Citizen Award at its upcoming 102nd Commencement Ceremony.

Joseph Rich, the founder of the Disabled Persons Action Organization (DPAO), will be recognized along with the 2010 graduating class at 10:30 a.m. on Saturday, May 22, in an outdoor ceremony adjacent to the Richard W. Miller Campus Center.

“We give this award to recognize those who have made the community a better place for everyone,” said SUNY Canton President Joseph L. Kennedy. “Joe Rich has positively influenced the North Country in many ways. I hope our graduates look at what he has done as a model for future success.”

While working at WWNY TV – 7 News in 1974, Rich received a phone call asking for the station’s help; a local boy had been accidentally shot during a hunting accident. Left paralyzed and without the ability to breathe on his own, the boy’s future was to remain in the hospital, but his family wanted to care for him.

With permission from the station, Rich orchestrated fundraisers for the family and raised enough money to put an addition on their home and install life support equipment. Rich continued his work by creating the DPAO, where he worked to raise money for the agency and brought in funding for the disabled in the community. “We wanted to help ease the stress on families in their own homes,” he said.

For over 30 years, Rich developed the DPAO from a one-man organization to a 140 staff member agency that serves more than 500 individuals. “The DPAO is a vital institution in Watertown,” said City of Watertown Mayor Jeffrey E. Graham. “He became a cultural icon by organizing concerts which raised money for the DPAO, but equally important, he provided culture and entertainment for the City.”

Many of his ideas and practices have been implemented across the state over the years, but Rich wanted to extend his work beyond New York, according to New York State Democratic Executive Committee Chair June F. O’Neill. “His accomplishments have been extraordinary and are not limited to our region,” she said. “Joe is a founding member and president of the 1 World Foundation. He travels to the West Indies to help residents with special needs.”

Hundreds of lives have been enriched through his advocacy, according to Diana Jones Ritter commissioner of the New York State Office of Mental Retardation and Developmental Disabilities.

“His compassion, diplomacy and communication skills educated people in upstate New York to embrace individuals with developmental disabilities as contributing members of their communities,” she said. “He is truly the voice of the people.”

While his résumé is extensive, he insists the credit should not go to him. “I’ve been the facilitator, but it’s been the people that work with us that have made the difference,” Rich said “That’s the way it is in the North Country. People care about people.”

A Watertown native, Rich graduated from Empire State College with a Bachelor of Arts degree in broadcast journalism in 1970. He worked in both radio and television before pursuing his work with the DPAO full time. He currently resides in Watertown with his wife, Carol. Although retired, he still spends his time volunteering and serves on the Foundation Board at Jefferson Community College and is also a member of the Board of Trustees for the Watertown Savings Bank. He’s a two-time recipient of the Paul Harris Fellow from the Rotary Club and is heavily involved in the 1 World Foundation.

Media inquiries should be directed to Gregory Kie, Media Relations Coordinator, or call 315/386-7528.


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Outstanding Associate Grad Awarded with Scholarship Sponsor

Tuesday, May 11th, 2010

An engineering science student will be honored with the alumnus who sponsored his scholarship at SUNY Canton’s 102nd Commencement Ceremony.

Kale C. Hitchman of Hannawa Falls is the College’s 2010 recipient of the annual Outstanding Graduate Award at the associate level. He received the John L. Halford, Sr. Endowed Scholarship in 2008, and Halford is this year’s recipient of the College’s Distinguished Alumnus Award. Hitchman is one of nine North Country students who have benefitted from Halford’s generosity.

Hitchman and Halford are among the honorees and award recipients who will be recognized during Commencement at 10:30 a.m. on Saturday, May 22, in an outdoor ceremony adjacent to the Richard W. Miller Campus Center.

Described as “the single most impressive student, classmate, and person” by one of his nominees for the accolade, Hitchman has spent considerable time working with his peers. In his first year, he worked for the Office of Accommodative Services and was a note taker for two students with disabilities. He has also been a math tutor and a teaching assistant for a professor in the engineering department.

“Kale Hitchman is a hard-working, extremely motivated, and ambitious young man,” said Feng Hong, associate professor of physics and 2010 Distinguished Faculty Award recipient. “He has an outgoing personality and enthusiasm for helping others. He is a leader among his peers.”

Hitchman recently completed an advanced course in materials testing with Michael J. Newtown, an associate professor in the Canino School of Engineering Technology. He was studying the strength of materials used in construction of bridges and buildings in preparation for his future career as a civil engineer.

“Kale was able to process very advanced topics and projects independently,” Newtown said. “He is the kind of student that you want to have in class. He’s prepared with advanced questions and challenges himself to take his work to the next level.”

Hitchman, who juggled academics and a part-time job throughout his two years at the College, was inducted into the Phi Theta Kappa national honor society in his first year. The same year, he joined the Institution of Electronics and Electrical Engineers (IEEE) and served as secretary. He served as president of IEEE as a senior.

A previous recipient of the Merriman Scholarship Award, Hitchman was also awarded the Clarkson University Leadership Award and will be attending Clarkson in the fall. He will spend the summer interning with Barrett Paving.

Media inquiries should be directed to Gregory Kie, Media Relations Coordinator, or call 315/386-7528.


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SUNY Canton OnLine Student to be Honored at Commencement

Tuesday, May 11th, 2010

A mother of six who works more than 50 hours a week and has an interest in the oral health of special needs patients has been selected as SUNY Canton’s Outstanding Graduate at the bachelor’s degree level.

Jill M. Lizak of Hamburg will be one of the inaugural graduates of the College’s online dental hygiene program. She will be among the honorees and award recipients to be recognized during Commencement at 10:30 a.m. on Saturday, May 22, in an outdoor ceremony adjacent to the Richard W. Miller Campus Center.

Lizak is a working dental hygienist in the Buffalo area. Her daughter, Kelsey A. Noeller, a 2009 SUNY Canton veterinary technology alumna, encouraged her to pursue her bachelor’s degree online. “I found online coursework to be an exceptional way for me to complete my studies while still maintaining both personal and professional commitments,” Lizak said.

In 2009, Lizak was honored for having the highest cumulative grade point average in her program. She developed an oral health manual for a course during her junior year and donated copies to the direct care staff of multiple skilled nursing and rehabilitation facilities to ensure better oral care for their patients.

In her senior year, Lizak created a continuing education course geared towards educating dental health professionals in treating the oral health of special needs patients. SUNY Canton created a three-hour workshop for dental hygienists, dentists and dental assistants based on her research. She recently received an award at SUNY Canton’s Scholarly Activities Celebration for her poster presentation on the project.

“Jill has 19 years experience as a dental hygienist, a passion for serving special needs patients, and a gift for sharing her knowledge and inspiring others to help this segment of the population,” said Kathryn Del Guidice, director of extended studies and Lizak’s advisor for her senior year project. “She is articulate, engaging and in full command of her field of expertise.”

Lizak is a member of the American Dental Hygiene Association (ADHA) and recently joined the Special Care Dentistry Association.

Media inquiries should be directed to Gregory Kie, Media Relations Coordinator, or call 315/386-7528.


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World War II Veteran Receiving Honors at SUNY Canton Commencement

Thursday, May 6th, 2010

A World War II Veteran who stepped forward as the first donor for SUNY Canton’s new athletic and convocation facility is slated to receive the 2010 Distinguished Alumnus award.

John L. Halford (class of 1949) will receive the prestigious honor at the 102nd Commencement Ceremony, to be held at 10:30 a.m. Saturday, May 22, in an outdoor ceremony adjacent to the Richard W. Miller Campus Center.

“John has been an extraordinary supporter of SUNY Canton and his hometown of Gouverneur,” said SUNY Canton President Joseph L. Kennedy. “His commitment and dedication to our country and this College makes us proud in so many ways. His support and generosity toward his alma mater have been remarkable. We are proud to honor him with this award as a small token of our appreciation for his wonderful and productive involvement with us and his lifetime of exceptional achievements.”

Halford and his wife Nelta recently made a donation in support of the Convocation, Athletic, and Recreation Center, which has been nicknamed Roos House. His donation secured the naming rights to an elevated seating and viewing area overlooking the new rink. Through their pledge, the exclusive area will be forever named the “Halford Alumni Suite.”

The Roos House seating area will be the second location on campus honored with the Halford name. In 2005, they pledged further support to the College Foundation, which led to the creation of the Halford Lobby on the entry level of the Faculty Office Building. They have also created an equipment endowment for the air conditioning technology programs and sponsor nine students annually through two scholarships.

“John has been a devoted SUNY Canton Alumnus for decades,” said Marti King MacArthur of the class of 1974 and 1978 and the 2007 recipient of the Distinguished Alumna award. “He has diligently supported and encouraged students and is committed to the value of a SUNY Canton education. He’s also an active community member.”

Through his endowments, Halford strives to help students realize their dreams and create chances where none previously existed. “College is all about opportunities in life,” he said. “I hope that through my scholarships I can help students see all the possibilities that lay ahead.”

At the age of 17, Halford entered the U.S. Marine Corps and served his country during World War II. After being honorably discharged, he returned to Gouverneur, finished high school, and went on to SUNY Canton (then called the Agricultural and Technical Institute) to study air conditioning technology. He then moved to Long Island and worked for Brookhaven National Laboratory as a technology specialist. He later became Suffolk County maintenance supervisor of buildings and grounds.

“John is one of the most impressive individuals I have ever met,” said Vice President for Advancement David M. Gerlach. “He fought for our country in World War II. He achieved tremendous success in his professional life. And throughout his entire life and even now, he is a complete gentleman who assists others whenever possible, particularly the young people of Gouverneur and Northern New York.”

He is a lifetime member of the Veterans of Foreign Wars in Gouverneur and a Mason of more than 50 years. He is a supporter of the E.J. Noble Hospital, Hermon-DeKalb Senior Citizens Center, and the Gouverneur Senior Citizens Center. He also volunteers for the Richville Library.

Media inquiries should be directed to Gregory Kie, Media Relations Coordinator, or call 315/386-7528.


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Roos House Underway at SUNY Canton

Wednesday, July 1st, 2009

Northland Associates of Liverpool continues to make excellent progress towards the construction of SUNY Canton’s new Convocation, Athletic, and Recreation Center, nicknamed “The Roos House.” Construction workers have begun pouring the foundation main portion of the complex, which will feature locker rooms and athletic staff offices. They will soon begin shaping the ice rink and field house for the 140,000 square foot building. Construction is scheduled to be completed by January 2011.

The project, coupled with the College’s other cross-campus renovations and projects, will dramatically change the overall atmosphere of the College, according to SUNY Canton President Joseph L. Kennedy.

Roos House

Pictured are (l to r) Northland Associates Employees Tyler Richards and Dennis Baron surveying the construction of a new foundation wall.

SUNY Canton offers a wide variety of career-driven bachelor’s, associate, and certificate programs, as well as three master’s degrees in conjunction with SUNYIT, Utica. Most of SUNY Canton’s new four-year programs are designed so students can take them on-campus, online, or both. SUNY Canton OnLine features more than 100 courses online each semester. The College’s athletic teams belong to the NAIA’s Sunrise Conference, enabling students to compete in their respective sports for four years. Construction is now underway for the College’s new Convocation, Athletic, and Recreation Center.

Media inquiries should be directed to Gregory Kie, Media Relations Coordinator, or call 315/386-7528.

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