Medina Campus Center Continues to Foster Community and Personal Growth, GCC Board of Trustees Hears

Batavia, New York —Genesee Community College’s Medina Campus Center continues to serve students of all ages as well as the business community of Orleans County and the surrounding area, GCC’s Board of Trustees learned at the monthly meeting which was held at the Center on Monday, October 5, 2015. Since opening its doors in 2007, Medina Campus Center has offered for-credit college courses to thousands of students, and also non-credit classes covering an array of different skills for the employees who work at a number of local businesses.

In recent years, GCC’s Medina Campus Center has partnered with Orleans Economic Development Agency to help local companies train their staff in computer applications, problem solving techniques, communication, leadership and management expertise, and also targeted skills such as blue print reading and change management.

In the past several years, Orleans County has witnessed the influx of a new niche market, specifically food processing companies from Canada. These firms establish a base in the United States in part, because they can readily address and satisfy U.S.D.A.’s food safety laws, and they find Orleans County a business friendly community.

“Excellent infrastructure in the form of water, gas and power lines make Orleans County a great investment,” Jim Whipple, chief executive officer of Orleans Economic Development Agency said. Whipple also noted the ten properties that were jointly identified by GCC and Orleans County officials as offering great potential for a Start Up New York program initiated by Governor Cuomo.

The Board of Trustees also heard from Medina Campus Center adjunct faculty member, Joyce Chizick who illustrated the value of a campus center education that offers small class sizes and close, personal attention. These attributes are often a game-changer for students who are initially unsure of their abilities and intimidated by a large-campus college experience. Chizick, who received the SUNY Excellence in Adjunct Teaching Award earlier this year, was followed by Tiffany Keiffer, an adult student who earned her Business Administration degree in 2011 while raising three children. She now works as an administrative assistant and hopes to one day open her own Tim Horton’s franchise.

In other business that evening, the Board of Trustees:

  • Approved the deactivating of the Sales and Customer Service Certificate and the Liberal Arts: Math and Science, AS degree after a hearing a report from Dr. Kathleen Schiefen, executive vice president for Academic Affairs. Dr. Schiefen explained that in each case the programs have been witnessing low enrollment and are being replaced by better options. The new Social Media concentration currently under review by the State University of New York is anticipated to launch in fall 2016, and disaggregating the dual Math-Science Liberal Arts program has been replaced by five separate concentrations that better serve the needs of students who can now focus on their particular interests and career paths. Additionally, Dr. Schiefen reported that the Medical Administrative Assistant, AAS degree eliminated one of two Physical Education course requirements to meet the SUNY seamless transfer 64 credit limit.
  • Reviewed a report compiled by William Emm, executive vice president of Planning and Institutional Effectiveness that summarized more than 160 different regulatory compliance mandates conferred by numerous federal, state, county, SUNY, OSHA, Middle States and many other governing agencies which GCC complies with. Emm’s report estimates that GCC staff members across 15 different departments devote more than 15,000 (aggregated) hours per year ensuring the College remains in compliance with all mandates from all governing bodies.