GCC Students Receive $16.7 Million in Financial Aid

Genesee Community College students received $16.7 million in student financial assistance last year, according to Joseph Bailey, Associate Dean for Enrollment Services.

Mr. Bailey told trustees at Monday’s Board of Trustees meeting that Genesee students received aid to help defray their education from a variety of sources, including federal PELL grants ($5.5 million); New York State Tuition Assistance Program (TAP) grants ($3.6 million); and Stafford loans ($7 million).

Student aid is on the increase, Mr. Bailey reported. Next year, the maximum PELL award will increase. Despite problems with national credit markets, Genesee Community College has access to enough private lenders to make educational loans possible. Genesee has also been declared eligible as a federal direct loan college, meaning that students could borrow directly from the federal government for educational expenses if they needed to do so.

“We have a wide range of financial resources available to help students pursue their college education,” Mr. Bailey said.

Students may contact Genesee’s Office of Financial Assistance at 585-345-6900 for more information about financial assistance and veterans services programs, and for help in completing financial assistance applications.

In other business Monday evening, the Board of Trustees:
  • Approved the granting of 251 degrees and certificates to Genesee students in January, subject to students’ satisfactorily completing their course work. The College plans to award 15 Associate in Arts (A.A.) degrees; 140 Associate in Science (A.S.) degrees; 69 Associate in Applied Science (A.A.S.) degrees; and 27 certificates.
  • Approved a resolution thanking Professor of Accounting Bruce Lindsey for 40 years of service to the College, after learning about his planned retirement at the end of the current academic year.
  • Authorized President Stuart Steiner to negotiate an agreement with the Genesee County Economic Development Center for lease of space in the GCEDC’s first Med Tech Park building. The College would use the space for nursing classrooms, nursing labs, and nursing faculty offices.
  • Appointed 369 area residents as members of 23 Genesee Community College advisory committees. Most of the College’s career programs have advisory committees, as do campus centers and some grant-funded programs. Advisory committees offer guidance on curriculum, internships, and community and business needs.
  • Heard Buildings and Grounds Kenneth Dodd report that the Committee met with Joy McCoola and Zilch architect Robert Joy to review plans for the upgrade of the College’s athletic facilities and fields.
  • Heard Board Chair Laurie Miller announce that the Board is accepting nominations for honorary associate degrees. The College can confer honorary associate degrees on individuals associated with the College who have earned business, professional, civic, and scholarly accomplishments, as well as individuals who have made notable contributions to the College or to academic disciplines taught at the College. Nominations are due February 1, 2009. Nomination criteria is available from Cathy Costello, Executive Assistant to the President and Secretary to the Board of Trustees (ccostello@genesee.edu).
  • Heard President Stuart Steiner report that Deborah Carrasquillo has been appointed Instructor of Nursing. Ms. Carrasquillo has served as a nurse at Wyoming County Community Hospital and Mercy Hospital in Buffalo. She also served as a member of the adjunct faculty of Genesee Community College and Trocaire College. She holds an A.A.S. degree from Niagara County Community College, and a B.S. degree from Daemen College. She is currently completing a M.S. degree from Daemen and is a resident of Warsaw.
  • Heard Dr. Steiner report that Amy Schnettler-Zak has also been appointed Instructor of Nursing. Ms. Schnettler-Zak has served as a nurse at the Center for Hospice and Palliative Care in Cheektowaga, Mercy Hospital, and as a Rehabilitation Teacher at the Elizabeth Pierce Olmsted M.D. Center for the Visually Impaired. She holds an A.A.S. degree from Erie Community College and a B.S. degree from Daemen College. She is completing her M.S. degree at Daemen. She has also served as a member of Genesee’s adjunct faculty and is a resident of Alden.
  • Heard Dr. Virginia Taylor, Vice President for Student and Enrollment Services, report that 541 individuals have applied for admission as full-time Genesee students for the spring 2009 semester, up 20% from the 452 individuals who had applied exactly one year ago. Two hundred eighty individuals have applied for admission as part-time students, up 22.8% from the 228 students who had applied a year ago. Course registration is also on the upswing, according to President Stuart Steiner. “With 37 days left before the spring semester begins, we’re looking at one of the highest spring enrollments ever,” he said. Dr. Steiner also noted that the fall 2009 semester has set a new enrollment record, with 6,672 students attending credit classes.
  • Heard Dr. Taylor report that the College’s Division of Student and Enrollment Services is being reorganized into three work units, focusing on enrollment services, student life services, and academic support and retention services. The reorganization ensures that staff with similar duties work closely together, and should bring greater efficiency to the division, Dr. Taylor said.
  • Heard Dr. Steiner report that, although Gov. David Paterson has proposed cuts in community college aid, the New York State Legislature has not enacted these or other cutbacks in the state budget.
  • Heard Maryanne Arena, Director of Fine and Performing Arts, report that the College hosted the annual Theatre Association of New York State Festival the weekend before Thanksgiving. The event included a variety of workshops and seminars, nine different theatre presentations, and an awards ceremony. Area hotels housed 257 out-of-town visitors who attended the event. A highlight of the Festival was a visit by internationally acclaimed actor Robert Forster, who has appeared in more than 100 movies and television shows. Mr. Forster conducted a workshop for participants during the Festival. Genesee students provided technical support and guide services throughout the event, Ms. Arena noted.