Batavia, New York —Genesee Community College’s campus centers in Albion and Medina are serving 509 students during the Spring 2012 semester and making a positive impact on the Orleans County community, Orleans Campus Center associate dean Gloria A. Morgan told the College’s Board of Trustees Monday evening. An additional 35 high school students attend on-site courses at the two centers. The GCC Board, conducting its monthly meeting at the Albion Campus Center, located on West Avenue (Route 31) in Albion, toured the Center and heard reports about College programs and activities offered there.
Associate dean Morgan told trustees that Albion and Medina staff collaborate closely in planning courses and student services. “So, for example, we might rotate our English Composition courses over different days and times between the two centers in order to accommodate the widely varying schedules of our students,” she said.
An important Albion Campus Center priority is community involvement and awareness, Dean Morgan told the Board. She cited cooperative activities with BOCES, involvement in the Orleans County 4-H Fair, and staff involvement in the Home and Garden Show as examples of positive college-community activities over the last year.
Genesee Promise Plus, which provides full-tuition scholarships for up to two summer courses for graduating high school seniors, is a major initiative of the Center this year. “We would like every area high school senior to take advantage of Genesee Promise Plus and enroll in summer courses at Genesee this year,” Dean Morgan said. “For some students, this will provide an important ‘head start’ to their college careers, and Promise Plus may provide other students with the opportunity to find out what college is all about and begin a college career they had not previously thought about.”
Dean Morgan complimented the faculty and staff of the Albion Center. She noted that one Albion faculty member, Karen E. Todd, instructor of Art, was honored for Excellence in Teaching by the Austin-based National Institute for Staff and Organizational Development last year.
Dean Morgan introduced two Albion students who are being honored by the Rochester Area Colleges Continuing Education Consortium this year as Outstanding Adult Students. Buffie Edick and Norman St. John each briefly addressed the College’s Board of Trustees. Both returned to college to prepare for second careers. Mr. St. John heaped praise on the faculty and staff for their commitment to students. Ms. Edick told trustees that she was initially reluctant to return to college, but “tackled the academic challenges like a job,” and always found someone to help and encourage her when she faced difficulty.
“We are very proud of Genesee Community College, and our Albion Campus Center,” said Dean Morgan, a GCC Class of 1978 graduate. “It is the people of this college community – our faculty and staff, our students, our advisory committee, and our extended community in Orleans County – that make this such a special and wonderful place.”
Dean Morgan said that many prospective students visit her office, unsure about their ability to handle college-level work, or afraid of college. “I tell them to follow my example,” she said. “I point to the Genesee Community College diploma that’s hanging on my wall, and tell them that I faced obstacles in my college years, but I did it. I say to them, ‘you can do it, too … we’ll help you every step of the way’.”
Genesee Community College’s Albion Campus Center was the first of six campus centers to be established by the College, opening in June, 1990. Other centers are located in Arcade, Dansville, Lima, Medina, and Warsaw. The Dansville Center, located on Route 63 just outside the Village of Dansville, is scheduled to move to the former Dansville Middle School this summer.
In other business Monday evening:
- President James M. Sunser reported that Robert Joy of Joy, McCoola and Zilch, an architectural firm specializing in higher education facilities planning, was on campus last week to continue work on the College’s new Facilities Master Plan. All SUNY campuses must create a facilities plan every five years, and the College contracted with Joy, McCoola and Zilch to complete Genesee’s plan. The Facilities Master Plan should be completed and presented to the Board of Trustees this spring, Dr. Sunser said.
- Director of Development and External Affairs Richard Ensman reported that the College’s Inauguration Committee has completed planning for “Inauguration Week,” scheduled April 30 – May 5. The week will include a variety of public activities that showcase the College and its programs.
Inauguration Week activities include a special lecture on creativity, the annual Alumni Hall of Fame induction, creation of a sand mandala by traveling Tibetan monks, a Livable Communities Forum co-sponsored with Genesee County, student awards banquet, open mic/poetry night, and the annual student Spring Fest. A display of President James M. Sunser’s life and career will be on exhibit in the Alfred C. O’Connell Library and faculty, staff, and students will plant a Dogwood tree to commemorate his inauguration.
Inauguration Week will culminate in the Inauguration ceremony Saturday, May 5, at 2:00 p.m. The public is invited. State University of New York Chancellor Nancy L. Zimpher will address the college community and the public during the ceremony, and Dr. Debby L. Sydow, President of Onondaga Community College, will deliver the keynote address. During the ceremony, Dr. Sunser, who arrived at Genesee last August 1, will deliver his inaugural address.
Inauguration Week is a celebration of the College’s history and future, Mr. Ensman said. “Genesee Community College was founded as the result of citizen involvement in the mid-1960s, and citizen involvement has enriched the College throughout its history,” he said. “Inauguration Week is an opportunity for all of us to celebrate the success of Genesee Community College and the promise of the future that lies before us.
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