Posts Tagged ‘Commencement’

More Than 1,150 Students Receive Degrees at SUNY Canton’s 107th Commencement

Saturday, May 9th, 2015

SUNY Canton recognized the accomplishments of approximately 1,150 graduates at the college’s 107th Commencement Ceremony held today, May 9, in the Roos House Convocation, Athletic and Recreation Center.


Pierre Nzuah, an international student from Cameroon who has lived in Canton for the past four years, sits among his peers at SUNY Canton’s 107th Commencement.

“I am extremely proud of everyone as you achieve this major goal in your lives,” said President Zvi Szafran, Ph.D.  “I know that as you move forward in life, you’ll be able to accomplish many great things, as have the alumni from SUNY Canton who have preceded you.”

This is Szafran’s first commencement as SUNY Canton’s president. He was officially inaugurated April 10.

Among the faculty members recognized at the ceremony was Associate Professor of Mathematics Daniel J. Gagliardi, Ph.D., who received the 2015 Distinguished Faculty award.


Associate Professor of Mathematics Daniel J. Gagliardi addresses the audience at SUNY Canton’s commencement after receiving the Distinguished Faculty award.

“SUNY Canton is a place where people can make a new life for themselves,” Gagliardi said. “Some people go from a minimum wage job to a meaningful career with the potential for unlimited growth. I’ve seen this happen year after year with every graduating class, and I’m very proud to be a part of the institution that’s making it happen.”

The keynote address was given by retired Congressman William L. “Bill” Owens, who received an honorary Doctorate of Laws degree in recognition of his advocacy for the North Country and his devoted support of SUNY Canton.


SUNY Canton’s Commencement keynote address was delivered by former U.S. Congressman William L. “Bill” Owens. He was presented an honorary doctorate at the ceremony.

“When I look around the audience today and see the fresh faces of graduates, I think of how you are going to lead us as we go forward,” Owens said. “I want you to focus on the idea that you are going to lead us. Whether if that is leading in your community, whether it is in your job, you need to understand what it means to be a leader.”


Students prepare to hear their names called at SUNY Canton’s 107th Commencement. More than 1,150 students were recognized on stage for their accomplishments.

A number of students were recognized at the ceremony, including:

  • Electrical Engineering Technology major Christopher A. Dwyer from Chittenango, who earned the Outstanding Associate Graduate award. Dwyer now resides in Ogdensburg.
  • Civil Engineering Technology major Alyssa M. Baker from Boonville, who received the Outstanding Baccalaureate Graduate award.
  • Electrical Engineering Technology major Pierre Nzuah from Cameroon, and Veterinary Science Technology major Danielle St-Denis from Massena, who both earned the Chancellor’s Award for Student Excellence.

A student celebrates the joyous occasion with a graduation “selfie.”

The top five bachelor’s degrees awarded, in order of popularity, were Legal Studies, Management, Finance, Nursing and Criminal Investigation.

The five most popular associate degrees were Criminal Justice, Nursing, Liberal Arts, Veterinary Science Technology and Individual Studies.

SUNY Canton Recognizes Nearly 1,000 Students at Commencement

Saturday, May 18th, 2013

SUNY Canton celebrated the accomplishments of approximately 964 new graduates at the College’s 105th Commencement Ceremony held at 10:30 a.m. today, Saturday, May 18, in the Convocation, Athletic and Recreation Center, nicknamed Roos House.

Commencement 2013

The entire stage is set for SUNY Canton Graduates. Pictured at the podium is Accounting Professor Daniel G. Fay, the longest serving faculty member and mace bearer for official College ceremonies.

“Upon graduation, you will have opportunities to take risks,” SUNY Canton Interim President Carli C. Schiffner said to the 2013 graduating class. “Make new connections and consider moving from familiar surroundings and landscapes. This is an exciting beginning — go for it. Don’t be idle.”

This will be Schiffner’s final commencement at SUNY Canton. She will step down May 31 to become vice president of instruction at Wenatchee Valley College in Washington State. Joseph C. Hoffman will begin his tenure as SUNY Canton acting president June 1.

Nafeesa Johnson

Student Government Association President Nafessa Johnson Addresses her classmates at SUNY Canton’s 105th Commencement Ceremony.

The senior class address was given by SUNY Canton’s Student Government Association President Nafeesa Johnson. She is graduating with a baccalaureate degree in Criminal Justice: Law Enforcement Leadership and is a representative for the agricultural and technical colleges on SUNY’s Student Assembly. She is also a member of the SUNY Canton College Council.

“The roads that we walk on are never easy, so we must pave the way for those who come after us,” Johnson said to her fellow classmates. “Many of us sit here as sons and daughters, mothers and fathers and veterans who have risked their lives for our great nation, but most of all we sit here today as graduates. Throughout my time at SUNY Canton many people have played a part in the person I am today.”

Johnson presented the annual Northstar Award to Assistant Professor Christa K. Kelson. This award is determined by the student body to recognize a faculty or staff member. Kelson teaches accounting and was selected for her kindness and helpfulness as a faculty member and adviser. She is an avid supporter of student activities and athletics.

Other honorees at commencement included:

  • Megan M. Mydosh, a Business Administration major from Warwick, who received the Outstanding Graduate Award at the associate level.
  • Zachary J. Smith, an Industrial Technology major from Lisbon, who received the Outstanding Graduate Award at the baccalaureate level. Smith also was a recipient of the Chancellor’s Award for Student Excellence.
  • John Payne Jr., a Sports Management major from Manchester, N.H., who received the SUNY Chancellor’s Award for Student Excellence and the Chancellor’s Scholar Athlete Award.
  • Ashley A. Abeling, a Dental Hygiene major from Perth, who received the David R. Maynard Student Activities Award.

The top five bachelor’s degrees awarded, listed in order of popularity, were Criminal Investigation, Management, Finance, Nursing and Legal Studies.

The top five associate degrees with the most graduates were Criminal Justice, Nursing, Liberal Arts, Veterinary Science Technology and Business Administration.

Yesterday, the graduating students from SUNY Canton’s Nursing programs were recognized at pinning ceremonies. Nearly 100 students are graduating and becoming registered nurses or licensed practical nurses. Additionally, 28 cadets graduated from the David Sullivan – St. Lawrence County Law Enforcement Academy. Eight of the cadets were students from the Law Enforcement Leadership program who enrolled as part of their final semester of classes.

Media inquiries should be directed to Gregory Kie, Media Relations Manager, or call 315/386-7527.


SUNY Canton Graduates 950 Students at 103rd Commencement

Saturday, May 21st, 2011

A number of firsts highlighted SUNY Canton’s 103rd Commencement on Saturday, including the event taking place in the College’s brand new athletic facility and three four-year degree programs graduating their first class.

The College’s impressive growth in enrollment and academic offerings was illustrated in a variety of ways throughout the ceremony. Approximately 950 students participated in the commencement exercises as compared to about 700 in 2010. This is also the first year SUNY Canton graduated students from the graphic and multimedia design, nursing, and funeral service administration bachelor’s degree programs.

The first two graduates to receive funeral service administration degrees came to campus for their second degree from SUNY Canton. Heather Reszka Miller of Longmont, Colo., received her associate’s degree from the College in 2002, while and Heather A. Rauch of Frankfurt earned hers in 2006. They were pleased to have the opportunity to complete many of the degree requirements at their alma mater through online courses.

“Because of the nature of our work, our schedules are always unpredictable,” Miller explained. “Having the ability to complete our make time for school work based on our work schedules was one of the best parts about the program. It gave us the flexibility we needed.”

Approximately 240 bachelor’s degrees were awarded, nearly twice as many as last year. The largest increase in graduates came from the School of Business and Liberal Arts, which awarded 137 bachelor’s degrees.

The College’s largest and most popular bachelor’s degree program was finance with 63 graduates. The criminal investigation program celebrated 37 graduates, while management was the third largest program with 35 graduates.

The most popular associate degree program was nursing with 103 graduates. The second largest two-year program was criminal justice which graduated 84 students, while both business administration and veterinary science technology graduated 34 students.

“The Class of 2011 will go as far as their dreams take them because they are armed with in-demand degrees and the skills necessary to be successful,” said SUNY Canton President Joseph L. Kennedy. “As they’ve realized their potential, not only as individuals but as a collective group, they’ve contributed to ours. Their growth reflects our own.”

Among the honorees was Dr. Maureen P. Maiocco, recipient of the College’s Distinguished Faculty Award. She took a moment to thank colleagues and her students and then addressed the Class of 2011.

“Graduates, find joy in your work; put forth your best effort in all you do, be planned and prepared, and take advantage of every opportunity,” she said. “Always find excitement in discovering and learning. You are all capable of greatness, and all of you have something to teach.”

Maiocco concluded with the words of Jim Henson, creator of the Muppets, a passage she has carried with her for years. “When I was young my ambition was to be one of the people who made a difference in this world. My hope is to leave the world a little better for my having been there.”

Other Commencement highlights:

  • For the second year, SUNY Canton held its simultaneous live videoconference Commencement with the American University in Bosnia and Herzegovina. The College recognized 70 students who earned degrees from both institutions. The graduates earned a bachelor’s degree in finance from SUNY Canton. Last year, 20 Bosnian students were awarded dual degrees.
  • Professor Emeritus Richard W. Miller attended his 65th SUNY Canton Commencement. Miller has not missed the ceremony since 1946. He was a distinguished professor of electrical engineering technology for 37 years and served on the College Foundation’s Board of Directors. The College’s Campus Center is named in honor of Miller’s consistent support and generosity.
  • Three SUNY Canton seniors graduated off-site as they competed in the NAIA Softball National Tournament in Gulf Shores, Ala. Danielle F. Callahan of Kingston, Carolina Olivares of Adelanto, Calif., and Jenifer L. Shaw of Helendale, Calif., were surrounded by coaches and teammates for the ceremony, which also included a video message from Dr. Kennedy.
  • Six graduates earned a diploma and a badge having graduated from the SUNY Canton David Sullivan St. Lawrence County Law Enforcement Academy on Friday, May 20. The class included Peter G. LaSala of Canton, a sworn officer of the Norfolk Town Police Department; Robert L. Latimer of Canton; Stephanie J. Reid of the Bronx; Jesse J. Sheen of Gouverneur; Mark C. Stewart of South Glens Falls, a sworn officer of the Norfolk Town Police Department; and Alex E. Stuart of Tupper Lake, a sworn officer of the Hamilton County Sheriff’s Office.

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


SUNY Canton Commencement Graduates 700 Students

Saturday, May 22nd, 2010

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.

SUNY Canton Celebrates Commencement

Friday, May 18th, 2007

More than 700 students are eligible to participate in SUNY Canton’s 99th Commencement Ceremonies beginning at 10:30 a.m. Saturday, on the Edson A. Martin Athletic Fields. The event will be held outdoors for the first time in recent memory and perhaps in college history.

The Graduates:

Criminal Justice was the most popular major among graduates with 108 students receiving their associate degree in that field. Seventy-five graduates received associate degrees in Liberal Arts and Sciences: General Studies, making it the second most popular major, followed by Nursing with 69 students and Business Administration with 62 graduates. The most bachelor’s degrees were awarded in Criminal Investigation. It was the fifth most popular major overall with 60 graduates. The certificate program with the highest number of graduates was the Health Science Career Studies major with 55 students. It was also the sixth largest major overall.

The Chancellor:

SUNY Chancellor John R. Ryan will be the keynote speaker. SUNY Canton President Joseph L. Kennedy has praised Ryan for his extraordinary leadership and accomplishments as well as his tremendous support of SUNY Canton. Ryan has accepted a position as president and CEO of the Center for Creative Leadership, headquartered in Greensboro, N.C., and will be stepping down as chancellor at the end of this month.

The Tent:

Graduation ceremonies will be conducted in an enormous tent that has been erected on the Edson A. Martin Athletic Fields. The tent is 100 feet wide and 220 feet long. The tent was rented from Hurlbut Tent Rental of Massena. College officials moved the event outdoors after it was discovered that Alumni Gymnasium in the Dana Athletic Complex was in need of repair.


Students and their families will gather with faculty, staff and friends for a post-graduation reception following the formal ceremonies. The weekend also featured 18 students graduating from the St. Lawrence David Sullivan Law Enforcement Academy and a special Pinning Ceremony honoring the 2007 Nursing graduates.


SUNY Canton Commencement Moves Outdoors

Wednesday, May 16th, 2007

For the first time in recent memory and perhaps in college history, SUNY Canton will conduct its Commencement outdoors.

The College’s 99th Commencement Ceremony will be held at 10:30 a.m. under a tent on the Edson A. Martin Athletic Fields on Saturday, May 19. SUNY Chancellor John R. Ryan will be the keynote speaker at the event.

College officials moved the event outdoors after it was discovered that Alumni Gymnasium in the Dana Athletic Complex was in need of repair.

“It will be a memorable day in the history of SUNY Canton,” said Director of Public Relations Randy Sieminski. “If it’s as enjoyable as we envision it, we may consider conducting the ceremonies outdoors in future years.”