Genesee Community College Student Union Dedication Set for January 18, 2006 Board Hears

The Wolcott J. Humphrey III Student Union is almost complete, vice president for Finance and Operations Patrick E. Richey reported to the Board of Trustees Monday evening. The dedication of the new 10,500 square foot building is set for Wednesday, January 18, at 1:15 p.m., Mr. Richey said.

Building inspectors completed their final walk-through of the new structure this morning, Mr. Richey told the Board. He anticipates that a certificate of occupancy will be granted within the next week. The structure is complete and all mechanical systems are working, according to Mr. Richey. "At this time, contractors are installing carpet and tile, and doing some final painting," he said.

The student union will be a gathering place for students outside of the classroom. It also contains conference rooms specifically designated for use by student clubs and organizations, as well as offices for the Student Government and the Student Activities staff. With the new student union, more evening and weekend activities are possible, Mr. Richey said.

The building was completed on time and on budget, according to Mr. Richey. Half of the $1.812 million cost was covered by the State University of New York Construction Fund. Genesee County, sponsor of the College, and the Genesee Community College Foundation contributed the remainder.

The new structure is critical to a growing college like Genesee, President Stuart Steiner said. "We are now a residential campus, with almost 300 out-of-area students living in College Village," he said. "The new student union, which is conveniently located near our housing, will be very attractive to our residential students. Just as important, the new building will enable us to offer the variety of out-of-classroom experiences that are very important to many college students."

The building's brick and glass exterior complements the existing Batavia Campus structures. The brightly-colored interior reflects the ambiance of a student gathering space. The new building was named in honor of Wolcott J. Humphrey III, former chair of the Board of Trustees who died suddenly four years ago. The student union was designed by Joy, McCoola and Zilch, the same architectural firm that designed the award-winning Conable Technology Building.

In other business this evening, the Board of Trustees:

•Approved granting of degrees and certificates to 216 students in January, subject to their satisfactory completion of course requirements. One student will receive the Associate in Arts (A.A.) degree, 128 students will receive the Associate in Science (A.S.) degree, and 61 students will receive the Associate in Applied Science (A.A.S.) degree. Twenty-six students will receive certificates.

•Appointed 357 area residents as members of 25 community advisory committees for the 2006 year. Many College programs and all of the College's five campus centers have an advisory committee comprised of individuals who assist faculty and staff in developing curricula, arranging internships, and ensuring that programs are responsive to community needs.

•Approved technical changes to position titles included in the State University of New York official listing of titles.

•Heard director of Development and External Affairs Richard Ensman request that the Board take the first steps toward a transfer of 2.6 acres of land to the College Foundation for future College Village expansion. Mr. Ensman also asked the Board to consider granting the Foundation an easement on College property to construct an additional water line to serve College Village.

•Heard Mr. Ensman report that the College Foundation is soliciting nominations for the "Meritorious Service Medal" - a new award to be presented annually to an individual who exemplifies the ideals of philanthropy and volunteerism in support of Genesee Community College.

•Heard vice president for Student Services George W. Walker report that applications from prospective students for the Spring 2006 semester are running ahead of last year's applications. As of December 5, 191 individuals had applied for admission as full-time students, up from the 154 individuals who had applied one year earlier. Two hundred thirty-seven students had applied for admission as part-time students, up from the 223 students who had applied one year earlier. Dr. Steiner predicted that overall Spring 2006 enrollment would be positive. "Last year we had a record spring enrollment," he said. "We expect to be at least even with last year."

•Heard vice president for Human Resources and Planning Larene Hoelcle report that four senior members of the State University of New York staff visited Genesee December 1 as part of SUNY's "Mission Review" initiative. Visiting Genesee were Dr. Frederick Hildebrand, assistant provost for Academic Programs; Dr. Anne Huot, executive vice provost and head of Academic Affairs; Dr. William Murabito, associate vice chancellor and special assistant to the provost; and Dr. John Clark, vice chancellor for Enrollment Services. Under this program, each of SUNY's 64 campuses completed a comprehensive review of their unique strengths and programs, and provided an analysis of campus programs to SUNY in response to 44 questions. "The SUNY team was very, very impressed by what they saw here at Genesee, from the condition of the physical facilities to the outstanding 21st century programs we offer," Dr. Hoelcle said. The State University will invite Genesee to complete a "Memorandum of Understanding" within the next several months outlining our mutual understandings about Genesee's role in serving the mission of SUNY and initiatives Genesee can pursue to further strengthen the College's programs and services, Dr. Hoelcle said.

•Heard Dr. Hoelcle report that the engineering firm of Woodard & Curren conducted an Environmental Protection Agency compliance audit under contract with SUNY last month. "We were pleased that many of Woodard & Curran's recommendations are in the category of 'best management practice' rather than the need to remediate problems," she said.