Students begin returning to SUNY Cortland on Friday, Aug. 24, in a whirlwind week that will be highlighted by a visit from State University of New York Chancellor Nancy L. Zimpher.
The SUNY chancellor will make a notable third visit to the campus to address the College community during SUNY Cortland President Erik J. Bitterbaum’s annual opening address, on Thursday, Aug. 23. Bitterbaum will speak to the College’s faculty and staff at 8 a.m. in the Corey Union Function Room. Later, senior administrators will introduce new faculty and staff members and report on their respective areas. Zimpher is slated to speak at 11 a.m.
On Thursday, Aug. 23, the campus will open its 16 residence halls and the West Campus Apartments to approximately 100 new residential students who did not attend the summer orientation program. The majority of new residential students will move in the following day. Returning residential students will occupy their rooms Saturday, Aug. 25, through Sunday, Aug. 26.
In all, College officials expect approximately 7,250 students to be enrolled for the fall semester. Classes begin on Monday, Aug. 27.
Between Friday and Sunday, access will be limited on Prospect Terrace and from Graham Avenue to Neubig Road, which winds past the SUNY Cortland residence halls to the Broadway intersection. Traffic will proceed one-way, in a westerly, downhill direction from 8:30 a.m. to 5 p.m. during this time. On Friday, university police will limit traffic solely to first-year or transfer students moving into the residences. Neubig Road will be closed to traffic from 5 a.m. to 8:30 a.m. during all three move-in days.
Parents or guardians who are helping their new or returning student move into a residence hall should approach from Graham Avenue, quickly unload their vehicle, and proceed immediately to the Park Center and Professional Studies Building parking lots. Bus service will be available between the parking lots, Corey Union and the residence halls. Faculty, staff and others with business on the campus are encouraged to park at Park Center and the Professional Studies Building and use the bus service.
Faculty and staff are invited to join the Welcome Team that helps new students move into the residence halls from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. on Friday and Saturday. There are two shifts each day: 8 a.m. to noon and noon to 4 p.m. Volunteers can choose to sign up for one or two shifts. To sign up today, faculty and staff may log in to their online myRedDragon account, select the Faculty/Staff tab and look for the Welcoming Team Signup link on the lower left. Volunteers will receive a “Dragon Haller” t-shirt for making the move-in process welcoming and easy.
Marking the start of another academic year, the Fall 2012 Academic Convocation begins at 4 p.m. on Sunday, Aug. 26, in the Park Center Alumni Arena. The hour-long ceremony is designed for all first-year and new transfer students. All SUNY Cortland faculty and professional staff are encouraged to attend.
Welcome Week will offer a number of events geared to help new students connect with the campus community and assist them in their transition and adjustment to college life, from Friday, Aug. 24, through Wednesday, Sept. 5.
For more information about Welcome Week events, contact Campus Activities and Corey Union at (607) 753-5574.
On campus, a truly unprecedented level of facility changes will be apparent, noted Jeff Lallas, director of facilities planning, design and construction.
A measure of patience and sense of adventure will be required for the coming year or two until the campus is updated with many new or upgraded facilities, according to Lallas. In one sign of the times, portable trailers are presently dotting the campus in various locations. These will provide the campus community with temporary faculty and staff office and classroom space.
At the Bowers Hall site, a new addition is rising out of the ground where the old main entrance and museum wing were demolished over the summer as the College’s primary science facility undergoes expansion and renovation of the Bowers I wing.
At semester’s end, faculty and staff moved out of the Dowd Fine Arts Center as the academic building undergoes an anticipated year-and-a-half internal renovation. The classes, concerts and gallery exhibitions that normally occur within will go on elsewhere on campus, or, in the case of Dowd Gallery programs and exhibitions, off campus at the Main Street SUNY Cortland facility.
Two utility projects are underway in more out-of-the-way locations. A substation near the Route 281 entrance is being upgraded this fall and winter while a two-year project to install individual boilers in each building and remove the less energy efficient, central steam plant reaches its mid-point.
Contractors broke ground on the College’s newest, 228-bed residence hall at the end of last semester and the steel structure is taking shape at the end of Hayes and Hendrick halls facing Casey and Smith Towers. When ready for Fall 2013 semester occupancy, the domicile will resemble inside the six-year-old Glass Tower Hall at the opposite end of the quad. The domicile’s façade will be different but the residence will offer many of the same student amenities while demonstrating environmental sustainability, with the expectation of an even higher, Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design Gold rating.
Work begins this fall on the crown jewel of the planned campus construction, the new $56 million Student Life Center. Planned on the site of the former Carl “Chugger” Davis Field near the heart of campus, this multi-purpose building will greatly expand student recreational, club and social life opportunities when it is finished as expected by December 2014.