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  Issue Number 3 • Tuesday, Sept. 22, 2015  

Campus-Champion-Scott-Moranda.jpg

Campus Champion

Associate Professor of History Scott Moranda strives to emulate the small-school environment that’s ideal for stimulating conversations about the world around us. Naturally, the Cultural and Intellectual Climate Committee (CICC) caught his attention when he joined SUNY Cortland in 2005. Scott now chairs the committee that promotes cultural life on campus and has directed its focus on cultivating a greater campus-community connection. This week marks the start of the 2015-16 CICC series of lectures, discussions, film screenings and art exhibits, all of which ask the question, “Where are we?” and offer educational opportunities for departments and programs across campus.

Nominate a Campus Champion


Tuesday, Sept. 22

Film: “Sleep Dealer,” Mexico, as part of the “Immigration to Europe” films series Global Walls: The Migration and Refugee Crisis 2015-16 sponsored by the?Clark Center For International Education, Sperry Center, Room 304, 6 p.m.

Open Mic Night: Corey Union Exhibition Lounge, 7 p.m.

Wednesday, Sept. 23

Sandwich Seminar: Pre-release Viewing of the Documentary Film ‘Goldwalker’ based in part on the novel of the same title by Scott Anderson, presented by Scott Anderson, Geography Department, Brockway Hall Jacobus Lounge, 12:30-1:30 p.m.

CICC Series Lecture: “Did Bob Get His Gun (Permit)? What Local Gun Laws Tell Us About the National Gun Debate,” Robert Spitzer, a SUNY distinguished service professor and chair of the Political Science Department, as part of the “Where Are We?” themed series, Brockway Hall Jacobus Lounge, 4:30 p.m.

Wellness Wednesday: “How to Eat Well in College,” ASC Nutritionist Andrea Hart, RDN, CDN, Corey Union Exhibition Lounge, 7 p.m.

Thursday, Sept. 24

Sandwich Seminar: “Solarize CNY Cortland County – A Community Solar Initiative,” Brice Smith, Physics Department, Brockway Hall Jacobus Lounge, noon-1 p.m.

Geography Lecture: “Timing and Genesis of Gold and Silver Mineralization within Four Historic Mining Districts, North-Central Nevada,” presented by Christopher R. Kelson, SUNY Potsdam, Bowers Hall, Room 1129, 7 p.m.

Friday, Sept. 25

Sandwich Seminar: Caleb Orozco: One Man’s Struggle for Human Rights in Central America, presented by Julia Scott, author, New York Times Magazine; Vicki Wilkins, Recreation, Parks and Leisure Studies Department; and Thomas Pasquarello, Political Science Department. Old Main Colloquium, 12:30-1:30 p.m.

Faculty Portfolio Development Workshop: Brockway Hall Jacobus Lounge, 1-3 p.m. RSVP to Susan Suben, Faculty Development Center

Homecoming Pep Rally: Corey Union, 7:30 p.m.

Friday, Sept. 25-Sunday, Sept. 27

Homecoming Weekend. Campus-wide events.

Saturday, Sept. 26

Second Language Educators Conference: A Conference for Second Language Teachers and Teachers In Training, Sperry Center, 8:15 a.m. to 1:15 p.m.

Vocal Master Class: With Richard Lissemore, Dowd Fine Arts Center, 10 a.m.-1 p.m., 2-5 p.m. For more information, contact David Neal 

Monday, Sept. 28

Lecture: “Beaded Birds and Beasts: Two Hundred Years of Iroquois Beadwork,” by Dolores Elliott, museum consultant and retired archaeologist, Moffett Center, Room 2125, 4:20 p.m.

SafeZone Training: For faculty, staff and alumni, Corey Union Fireplace Lounge, 5-8 p.m. to multicultural.life@cortland.edu or call Dana Smith at 607-753-2336

Alumni Speaker Series: “Careers in Communication Studies,” Corey Union Exhibition Lounge, 7 p.m.

Tuesday, Sept. 29

Service Learning Panel Discussion: For faculty members, Corey Union Calieon Room, 3:30-4:30 p.m. RSVP to Susan Suben, Faculty Development Center

Film: “The Intouchables,” France, as part of the “Immigration to Europe” films series Global Walls: The Migration and Refugee Crisis 2015-16 sponsored by the?Clark Center For International Education, Sperry Center, Room 304, 6 p.m.

Greek Convocation: Information about fraternities and sororities, Corey Union Function Room, 7:30 p.m.

Wednesday, Sept. 30

Sandwich Seminar: “Find Your Tribe and Track Your Stats: Using Scopus to Identify Your Publication Impact and Future Publication Opportunities,” presented by Memorial Library Instructional Service Librarians Laura Stern, Anita Kuiken and Brian Story. Brockway Hall Jacobus Lounge, 12:30-1:30 p.m.

Wellness Wednesday: “Mixed Drinks, Mixed Emotions: Alcohol Abuse and Mental Health,” by national presenter Ross Szabo, co-sponsored by Student Conduct. Corey Union Function Room, 7 p.m.

Thursday, Oct. 1

Farmer’s Market: Student Life Center lobby, 10 a.m.-2:30 p.m.

Workshop: Drawing Social Commentary, Dowd Fine Arts Center Exhibition Gallery, 5-7 p.m. Free drawing workshop offered by Yvonne Buchanan in conjunction with "HOMEFRONT and other works by Sarah McCoubrey. Contact Erika Fowler-Decatur to register.

CICC Series Concert: Cortland Old Timers Band Concert, under the direction of conductor Edward O’Rourke, Old Main Brown Auditorium, 7 p.m.

Film Screening:Miss Representation,” sponsored by SUNY Cortland’s Title IX Office, the first of two films by The Representation Project, Sperry Center, Room 105, 7 p.m.

Saturday, Oct. 3

SUNY Cortland Employee Fall Festival: Lusk Field House, 11 a.m.-3 p.m. Food service from noon-2 p.m. 

Performance: “Divas Through The Decades — Music of Madonna, Carrie Underwood, Taylor Swift and more!” Corey Union Function Room, 7:30 p.m. Open to the public, tickets now on sale in Corey Union, Room 406.

Sunday, Oct. 4

Celebration of Men: Sponsored by Men of Value and Excellence (MOVE), Corey Union Exhibition Lounge, noon-3 p.m.

Tuesday, Oct. 6

Film: “In this World,” United Kingdom, as part of the “Immigration to Europe” films series Global Walls: The Migration and Refugee Crisis 2015-16 sponsored by the?Clark Center For International Education, Sperry Center, Room 304, 6 p.m.

Open Mic Night: Corey Union Exhibition Lounge, 7 p.m.

Wednesday, Oct. 7

Falconry Demonstration: As part of the library exhibition "Renaissance Science, Magic and Medicine of Harry Potter's World," general falconer Mary Cope will discuss the medieval sport as she shows off her red-tailed hawks and owls. Coincidentally, most of her owls are named after Harry Potter characters, Memorial Library second floor, 7 to 8:30 p.m. abilities.

Wellness Wednesday: “An Intro to Meditation,” by yoga instructor Jeannine Gettis, Student Life Center, Mind Body Room, 7 p.m.

Thursday, Oct. 8

Sandwich Seminar: “Risk Terrain Modeling: Predictive Crime Analysis using GIS,” by Adam Levine, GIS/FIS manager, Brockway Hall Jacobus Lounge, noon-1 p.m.

CICC Series Lecture: “Land Ethic and Gaia Paradigm; The Co-evolution of Two Great Ideas,” by naturalist Martin Ogle, as part of the “Where Are We?” themed series, Brockway Hall Jacobus Lounge, 4:30 p.m. 



Rep. Hanna Announces Bill to Help Teachers Repay Student Loans

09/22/2015

U.S. Rep. Richard Hanna visited SUNY Cortland Sept. 21 to announce a federal initiative to attract and retain the best teachers in classrooms where they’re needed the most. 

The Teacher Loan Repayment Act of 2015 — or H.R. 3359 — would eliminate the current patchwork of underutilized loan assistance programs for teachers and replace them with a streamlined federal program that provides all eligible teachers with simplified access to more significant student loan relief.

Hanna was judicious in choosing to announce the bill at SUNY Cortland, which rates at the top in secondary teacher preparation. One of the largest nationally accredited teacher education institutions on the East Coast, the College has teacher certification in nearly every subject area and prepares its teaching students through extensive hands-on experience in a variety of classrooms.

“Our teachers are responsible for educating America’s children and therefore our next generation,” Rep. Hanna said to the approximately 50 college officials, faculty and staff members, and students and members of the public who attended.

“It is an admirable profession, and we should encourage our teachers to work in some of our most challenging classrooms — where their efforts are needed the most,” Hanna said.

The bill targets only teachers who choose to work in Title-I schools — schools enrolling at least 40 percent of children from low-income families. Participating educators would be eligible to receive loan forgiveness under this bill, providing them with an extra incentive to work in high-need schools.

Payments would increase each year, starting at $250 per month. This would serve to reward teachers who choose to stay in the classroom long-term. The total repayment figure one teacher can put toward his or her debt is capped at $23,400.

“My bill takes existing loan repayment programs, which are not working, and puts them into one viable, useful program,” Hanna said. “Our teachers will receive a financial benefit to help pay their educational loans and our students will receive a sound education that will pay dividends for a lifetime.”

“This initiative will help encourage bright, energetic young people to pursue teaching careers,” SUNY Cortland President. Erik J. Bitterbaum said. “It offers incentives to keep them going when things get tough, and rewards those who put their skills to work in high-need areas.

“Our college has been educating teachers for nearly a century and a half, and we understand the critical importance of this profession. Teachers mold the minds that determine our future.”

The bill has been introduced and referred to the House Committee on Education and the Workforce.

College Defies Physics Norm with Upward Movement

09/22/2015

Physicists all over the country have been closely scrutinizing their classrooms and laboratories to locate that seemingly rarest of molecular bodies in the universe: female future physicists.

The old quip doesn’t apply to SUNY Cortland, however.

The American Physical Society ranked the College as having the sixth largest fraction of female undergraduate physics degree majors at master’s degree granting institutions between 2011 and 2013.

And the College has moved up quickly from being tied at 13 as recently as the 2010 and 2012 data collection cycle, according to the society’s data. The scholarly association gets its information from the U.S. Department of Education’s Integrated Postsecondary Education Systems (IPEDS), established as the core postsecondary education data collection program for the National Center for Education Statistics.

Put another way, with 58 declared physics majors at the College, about 23 students on any given day is female, according to Moataz Emam, the Physics Department chair since last fall.

“In the broader sense, I would like for more people to be interested in the sciences,” Emam said. “There was a boom after the second world war, through the 1970’s, then a drop, when there was less scientific inquiry and discovery. Now, it’s growing and we’re part of a trend in a new interest in physics programs.”

“Because of all the challenges to women in physics, I think it’s very encouraging that we’re seeing these results,” said Melissa Morris, an associate professor in the Physics Department.

If that number seems at all disappointing, consider that by comparison, the average American college physics classroom contains far fewer females, not an encouraging sign for America in terms of keeping pace in the sciences with other countries.

There are many factors. Some are more anecdotal than empirical to explain why SUNY Cortland’s female undergraduates are orbiting this particular academic universe at this point in time, according to Emam.

He has noticed that today’s young women continue to gravitate toward professions that combine the science with teaching.

“SUNY Cortland continues to be the only SUNY institution to offer a degree in adolescent education in physics and mathematics,” Emam said.

Morris agrees. She thinks women can also thrive in the practical application of physics to other fields.

“Physics is probably the easiest science to lead to employment in any field,” said Morris, who noted the Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) once recruited her for her background in astronomy. “You can go into medicine, medical equipment, computer chip design. Even if the job has nothing to do with physics, the degree indicates you have problem-solving skills.”

“There is a greater consideration by today’s student that the discipline overlaps with everything else — history, biology, astronomy,” Emam said.

The Physics Department also rides the wave of an overall increased interest, incubated by the news media, in the STEM fields of study — science, technology engineering and math.

The physics of environmental sustainability is a dual focus for many students as well as the public. And with that in mind, Brice Smith, associate professor of physics, for example, has given many community talks on how individuals can reduce their carbon footprint, with the potential to cause a reaction in the mind of a future student.

In terms of master’s degrees, which are not part of the gender statistics, Smith’s brainchild, the professional science master’s degree in sustainable energy systems, has enjoyed early success.

Melissa Morris
Melissa Morris

“That (new) program has been running for two years,” Emam said “It has pushed our enrollment of master’s degrees in physics from zero to 16. A good percentage of majors are women.”

As recently as 1995, SUNY Cortland graduated approximately 16 physics majors. So the explosion in number of females in physics at the College might reflect that more of both men and women have chosen the field of study.

“The undergraduate numbers have roughly doubled in the last five years,” Emam said. “I think the College has done a much better job advertising that we are here.

“We’ve done a good job recruiting at Cortland-area schools. We’ve been able to attract students locally who are very good.”

Last spring the Tech Savvy Conference for Girls reached many young females, according to Emam. Presented with assistance from the American Association of University Women, the event introduced secondary school age girls to faculty and staff in many STEM disciplines. The department additionally offers close to 70 events per year with local schools, mainly involving the Bowers Hall Planetarium.

Promoting the discipline at SUNY Cortland also gets a boost from building this new planetarium to replace the outdated one torn down during the $43 million addition project, Emam noted.

“There was a strong push from the sciences to get a new planetarium as a research, teaching and recruitment tool,” he said. “We’re working to get other departments (outside the sciences) to use it. It’s something like an IMAX theater but even better.”

Math and engineering are closely related disciplines to physics, and there is rising interest in the College’s Physics leading to the 3 + 2 Engineering Program, which bestows baccalaureate physics and engineering degrees on a student who completed three years at Cortland and two years at a cooperating engineering school elsewhere.

“At open houses, it’s the program that I get asked about the most,” Emam said.

Most everyone is interested in the planets and the Solar System. Morris teaches Introductory Astronomy with Laboratory, a general studies course that captures the attention of its predominantly non-major students.

“There are usually around 70 students in the class and it’s about 50-50 men and women,” said Morris. “It’s the one area of physics that is equal between male and female. The students enroll in it thinking it’s only about the patterns of stars and then find out there’s a lot of other science involved.

“But it may be the only science course they will take. And I’m really out to impress on the students what science is and what it’s not.”

Morris finds women must overcome false assumptions about their abilities or lack thereof.

“There are societal impressions that men are more talented at math and science,” which we know are false impressions, she said.

Morris herself competed against a roomful of Calculus classmates as the only student who hadn’t taken high school calculus.

“I struggled the whole way,” she said. “Not because I was female, but because I was less prepared than my classmates. But I knew there was a point where I wouldn't have to do the calculations by hand. I knew that life is about practical applications. I could learn to program a computer to ‘do the math.’ The important thing is to understand the principles behind the equations. In this way, I can relate to my students, male and female, who are nervous about science or math.”


Capture the Moment

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Nikaylah Williams, a freshman member of SUNY Cortland’s women’s tennis team, warms up on the College’s new tennis courts. The team christened the courts with a 9-0 victory over visiting Oswego in a non-league match on Sept. 11 and a ceremonial opening of the tennis court complex was held on Sept. 15. On hand was State Sen. James L. Seward, who secured $2 million in state funding to replace the deteriorating outdoor tennis facilities. Read more.


In Other News

Series Themed ‘Where are We?’ to Begin

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SUNY Cortland will embark on a yearlong discussion about the role that local communities play in the greater society’s achievement of economic health, environmental resilience and overcoming inequalities of all types.

Presented by the Cultural and Intellectual Climate Committee (CICC), the nine lectures, panel discussions, exhibitions and concerts are themed on “Where Are We?”

Robert Spitzer
Robert Spitzer

The events are free and open to the public.

The committee’s theme states the idea posed by Wendell Berry: “If you don’t know where you are, you don’t know who you are,” according to CICC co-chair Scott Moranda, associate professor of history.

“We want to engage the campus in a critical discussion of localism and privilege,” Moranda said. “Strong arguments have been made about the value of shopping locally and eating locally grown food, but has the promotion of local economies done enough to engage with problems of poverty and racial inequality? Can the poor afford to be ‘locavores,’ who purchase local products produced in a sustainable manner? Does the idea of the ‘local’ invite everyone into our ‘home’ or wall some of us out?”

Committee members hope the series will encourage service in Cortland and surrounding areas.

“Many of us here at the College are new residents or short-term visitors in Cortland,” he said. “What connects us to this place, and why should we care?”

Robert Spitzer, a SUNY distinguished service professor and chair of the College’s Political Science Department, will launch the event series on Wednesday, Sept. 23, with a proposal to address the unbalanced relationship between gun laws and rights by looking at the local scenario.

“America’s love-hate relationship with guns has been framed in modern times as a zero sum struggle between gun laws and gun rights: that a gain for one side is a loss for the other, and that the two are incompatible,” Spitzer said. “But is that true? My research on the history of gun laws concludes the reverse: that in most of our history, the two went hand in hand.”

His talk, “Did Bob Get His Gun (Permit)? What Local Gun Laws Tell Us About the National Gun Debate,” begins at 4:30 p.m. in Brockway Hall Jacobus Lounge.

Spitzer is the author of five books on gun policy, including this year’s Guns Across America: Reconciling Gun Rules and Rights (Oxford University Press).

The series continues with a concert by the Cortland Old Timers Band on Thursday, Oct. 1. The music starts at 7 p.m. in Old Main Brown Auditorium.

Local community bands have a long history in the United States and the Cortland Old Timers Band can trace its origins to 1911. This concert, under the direction of conductor Edward O’Rourke, will feature classic and contemporary band music related to the ensemble’s long tradition.

O’Rourke was a music teacher for 41 years and taught in the Syracuse City Schools from 1977 until retirement in 2014. He has performed as clarinetist, saxophonist and conductor for a variety of bands.

Samuel Forcucci, retired band conductor and SUNY Cortland music professor emeritus, will introduce the band.

Martin Ogle, the chief naturalist for the Northern Virginia Regional Park Authority from 1985 to 2012, on Thursday, Oct. 8 will share his innovative ideas for thinking of the land as a community of which we are part.

Martin Ogle
Martin Ogle

Ogle, who has received the annual award of the Washington Academy of Sciences for outstanding teaching in informal and non-academic settings, will discuss “Land Ethic and Gaia Paradigm; the Co-Evolution of Two Great Ideas” at 4:30 p.m. in Brockway Hall Jacobus Lounge.

  He will explore his research of the Gaia Theory, the scientific view of Earth as a single physiological system. He will focus on the synergy between Gaia Theory and Aldo Leopold’s theory of Land Ethic, and explain how both may be necessary for us to address daily environmental and social challenges.

Ogle has degrees in wildlife biology from Colorado State and Virginia Tech.

A variety of four “common read” texts were selected for departments and programs across the campus to share.

“We encourage faculty and staff to infuse the theme into their courses, either through selections from the common readings or other texts related to the theme,” Moranda said.

The four selections are:

  • Will Allen’s  The Good Food Revolution. After years in professional basketball and as an executive for Kentucky Fried Chicken and Procter & Gamble, the author built the country’s preeminent urban farm — a food and educational center that now produces enough produce and fish year-round to feed thousands. Employing young people from the neighboring housing project and community, Growing Power shows how local food systems can help troubled youths, dismantle racism, create jobs, bring urban and rural communities closer together and improve public health.
  • Naomi Klein’s This Changes Everything. The author argues that climate change is an alarm that calls us to fix an economic system that is already failing us in many ways. Klein builds the case for how massively reducing our greenhouse emissions is our best chance to simultaneously reduce gaping inequalities, re-imagine our broken democracies and rebuild our gutted local economies.
  • Aldo Leopold’s A Sand County Almanac. These essays by a conservationist and wildlife biologist focus on a small farm Leopold lovingly tended as he sought to restore a damaged natural ecosystem. He imagined a local community that included both humans and the natural world and called for a new “land ethic” that elevated love of place and the rights of the land, animals and plants above what is economically expedient. 
  • Gerald Grant, Hope and Despair in the American City. The author compares two cities — his hometown of Syracuse, N.Y., and Raleigh, N.C. — in order to examine the consequences of the nation’s ongoing educational inequities. The result is an ambitious portrait of two cities that exemplify our nation’s greatest educational challenges. The book can lend itself to discussions of inequities and school reforms here in central New York. 

Future events in the “Where Are We?” series will be announced in the next Bulletin.

By holding an annual series on a different intellectual theme, the committee aims to generate common topics of discussion and to establish traditions of intellectual discourse on campus. The CICC encourages faculty and staff to infuse the theme into their course curricula, engage in classroom discussions and debates around the theme, and propose campus events or speakers on topics connected to the theme.

The series is sponsored by the Campus Artist and Lecture Series, the Provost and Vice President for Academic Affairs’ Office, the President’s Office and the Cortland College Foundation.

For more information, contact Moranda at 607-753-2052. Stay current with the series’ news on Twitter at @SUNYCortCICC.

Prepared by public relations intern Brandon Romagnoli


Mom of Five Wins National Scholarship for Non-Trads

Karyn-scott-WEB.jpg 09/22/2015

There likely will come a time when Karyn Scott’s children need advice on time management. And when they do, they should look no further than their superhero mom — a dedicated SUNY Cortland non-traditional student by day and the tireless caretaker of five children under the age of 10 the rest of the time.

Perhaps most notably, Scott is the recent winner of a prestigious Alpha Sigma Lambda scholarship, a $2,500 award reserved for only 10 recipients from across the country. The national honor society recognizes dedicated non-traditional students like Scott who are successfully continuing their college educations while balancing other important obligations. 

SUNY Cortland defines its non-traditional undergraduate students as those who are at least 24 years old or have had an interruption or delay in their education since high school. Approximately 300 of them currently study at the College.

“I’m not usually a crier, but I’ll admit I had a tear in my eye when I learned I had received the award,” she said. “I felt honored … very, very honored.” 

The award, which is based on leadership qualities, academic achievement and personal triumphs among other criteria, found a worthy recipient in the 36-year-old community health major. Besides her family commitments, Scott carries a full course load of credits with a 3.93 grade point average. That sustained excellence has earned her at least Dean’s List distinction every semester, regular recognition among Phi Kappa Phi academic honor society members and several different individual awards and scholarships from the College. 

From 2002 to 2006, Scott served in the U.S. Air Force, where she became an award-winning honor graduate. She’s been taking classes at SUNY Cortland since 2010 as a beneficiary of the Montgomery GI Bill.

“I was in the military, so I’m used to routine and structure,” she said with a laugh. “With our family, in order for everything to work out for everybody, we focus on working together as a team.”

Scott and her husband Ben, who works at the Hancock Field Air National Guard base in Syracuse, N.Y., have five children separated by approximately two years each; the youngest turned one in August and the oldest is 9 years old. The family resides in Brooktondale, N.Y., which is roughly a half-hour southwest of Cortland.

On school days, the oldest children are off to school by 7:30 a.m. Scott said she usually attempts to be in bed by 10 p.m., which means time management and productivity define the hours in between. The key to success is balance, she said. 

“I’ll try to do homework while the kids are napping or before they wake up in the morning,” she said. “And I try to support them in all of their activities and school functions too. Some days are tougher than others, but family always comes first.”

Not surprisingly, Scott hopes to work with youth in a community health setting such as a wellness center or a school after she graduates. She’s currently tackling her final semester of classes at SUNY Cortland and will complete field work in the spring to finish her degree.

“If you start children off at an early age and teach them about health — mental, emotional, physical — they carry it on into adulthood and teach their families,” said Scott, who previously earned the College Health Department’s Leonard T. Gath Award recognizing leadership and humanitarian concern for the safety and well-being of others.

She always finds ways to teach children, even when it means leading her own by example.

“It can be tough juggling things sometimes,” Scott said. “But it really shows them that you can learn no matter how old you are and that pursuing an education is important.”


Biologist to Share Views on Humanity and Earth

CICC_Where_2015_16_WEB.gif 10/05/2015

The typical college student might be stumped over the meaning of “Gaia Theory” or “land ethic.”

Biologist Martin Ogle not only excels as an expert in that theory, but he was honored in 2010 for his ability at explaining obscure scientific concepts in informal and non-academic settings with the annual award of the Washington Academy of Sciences.

Martin Ogle
Martin Ogle

On Thursday, Oct. 8, at SUNY Cortland, he will share his innovative ideas for thinking of the land as a community of which we all are part.

Ogle, who was chief naturalist for the Northern Virginia Regional Park Authority from 1985 to 2012, will present “Aldo Leopold, Local Land Ethics and Planetary Challenges” at 4:30 p.m. in Brockway Hall Jacobus Lounge.

Organized by the College’s Cultural and Intellectual Climate Committee (CICC), the event is free and open to the public.

The event continues the 2015-16 CICC series, themed this year on “Where are We?” The discussions consist of talk about the role that local communities play in the greater society’s achievement of economic health, environmental resilience and overcoming inequalities of all types.

Ogle will discuss theAldo Leopold’s Sand County Almanac, which encompasses a series of essays geared for conservationists and wildlife biologists. Leopold in his book imagined a local community that included both humans and the natural world and called for a new “land ethic” about what is economically relevant to the love of place and the rights of land, animals and plants.

Sand County Almanac is one of four “common readings” relating to upcoming lectures that the campus and community are encouraged to read in advance. Additional selections include Will Allen’s The Good Food Revolution, Naomi Klein’s This Changes Everything, and Gerald Grant’s Hope and Despair in the American City.

Ogle in his most recent scholarship attempts to expand on Leopold’s concept of Gaia Theory, which in recent times has been defined as the scientific view of Earth as a single physiological system.

“The metaphor ‘Gaia’ powerfully reflects this science and gut-level feeling that reminds us that forests, mountains, prairies and savannas we inhabit are physiologically linked to everything else,” Ogle said.
His Gaia Paradigm, which he has advanced through his workshops, programs and writings, asserts that this re-discovery of Earth’s life must be the compass that points back and gives meaning to specific places of work and life.

“Gaia Theory tells us that the rock, water, air and organisms (including us) have and continue to co-evolve as a single physiology,” Ogle said. “It puts humans in place with the rest of the world.”

The theory already has inspired ideas and practical applications for economic systems, policy and scientific inquiry.

Ogle asserts that his discussion topic fits well into the series’ theme.

“The question ‘Where are we?’ has become complicated in the past few decades of high mobility, cultural homogenization and scientific advances,” he said. “We may come to explore this question, however, in ways similar to our relatively immobile and culturally distinct ancestors.”

Ogle, who was born and spent much of his younger life in South Korea, holds degrees in wildlife biology from Colorado State and Virginia Tech. In 2012, he and his family moved to Louisville, Colo., where he founded Entrepreneurial Earth LLC.

He has written articles and completed book reviews for Taproot: a Journal of Outdoor Education published at SUNY Cortland by the Coalition for Education in the Outdoors.

Future events in the “Where Are We?” series will be announced in the next Bulletin.

By holding an annual series on a different intellectual theme, the CICC committee aims to generate common topics of discussion and to establish traditions of intellectual discourse on campus. Faculty and staff are encouraged to infuse the theme into their courses, either through selections from the common readings or other texts related to the theme.

The series is sponsored by the Campus Artist and Lecture Series, the Provost and Vice President for Academic Affairs’ Office, the President’s Office and the Cortland College Foundation.

For more information on Ogle’s talk, contact Professor Charles Yaple. For more information on the “Where Are We?” series, contact CICC co-chair Scott Moranda at 607-753-2052.

Prepared by public relations intern Jessica McFadden


Topic is Mixed Drinks, Mixed Emotions

Ross_Szabo_horizontal_WEB.gif 09/22/2015

As a young man, Ross Szabo was diagnosed with bipolar disorder. But from that diagnosis he saw an opportunity.

Szabo took charge of his life and used his advocacy skills to educate young people across the nation on the importance of maintaining mental health. He has used his knowledge and experience to reach over 1 million young people and make them conscious of their own substance abuse and mental health issues.

He will visit SUNY Cortland on Wednesday, Sept. 30, to help students understand the relationship between alcohol, anxiety and depression and inform them on how to get help.

Szabo’s speech, “Mixed Drinks, Mixed Emotions: Alcohol Abuse and Mental Health,” will begin at 7 p.m. in the Corey Union Function Room.

Part of SUNY Cortland’s semester-long Wellness Wednesday Series, the event is free and open to the public.

“The goal of the presentation is to get people to realize why they are drinking; to notice if it is a coping mechanism,” Szabo said.

“The importance of understanding the cause of alcohol abuse and how to maintain mental health is relevant to the entire campus, students and faculty alike. Your mental health is as important as your physical health.”

Health promotion is a crucial aspect of the SUNY Cortland campus services and this event will move a big step toward further educating students on wellness, said SUNY Cortland health educator Lauren Herman. Educating the students on alcohol use and its consequences is important.

“Alcohol use can lead to other issues involved with student conduct and safety,” Herman said.

The Ross Szabo event is sponsored by the College’s Student Conduct Office. Co-sponsors include the Health Promotion Office and the Student Development Center.

In keeping with a College priority of well-being, each semester SUNY Cortland offers weekly encouragement to the campus and community to pursue a lifetime of good health. The series takes place on Wednesdays at 7 p.m. in Corey Union Exhibition Lounge, unless otherwise noted. The events are free and open to the public.

For more information on the presentation, contact Michael Pitaro, associate director of student conduct, at 607-753-4725.

For more information or accommodation to attend an event, contact Herman in Van Hoesen Hall, Room B-1, or 607-753-2066.

Prepared by public relations intern Jenel Colon 


Departments Take Their Coursework to the Adirondacks

Edu-RL-thumb.jpg 09/22/2015

Active learning recently took two academic departments outside of their traditional classroom settings for overnight trips into the Adirondack wilderness.

Both the College’s history and childhood/early childhood education departments have voyaged to the William H. Parks Family Center for Environmental and Outdoor Education at Raquette Lake over the past two weeks.

Nineteen SUNY Cortland childhood/early childhood education worked with students
from Old Forge Elementary School on Sept. 22.

Twelve sophomore-level history students along with six of the department’s faculty members made the weekend trip Sept. 11 to 13. Nineteen childhood/early childhood education majors and five faculty members departed Sept. 21 for a three-day trip, with the primary purpose to connect pre-service teachers with students from Old Forge Elementary School for the first time. The latter partnership, which brought third-, fourth- and fifth graders to SUNY Cortland’s outdoor campus for the day, was initiated by Assistant Professor Chris Widdall and Jeremiah Best ’11, M.S.Ed. ’15, who recently began teaching at the school.

“We’ve been bringing pre-service teachers for a three-day outdoor education experience at Camp Huntington since 2000, but this is the first time we’ve worked with the elementary students while up here,” said Professor Beth Klein, who made the trip along with Lecturer Renee Potter, Associate Professor Shufang Strause, Associate Professor Kim Wieczork and Widdall. 

“Our pre-service teachers worked to prepare activities on Great Camp and Adirondack history, Adirondack animal survival and nature awareness and observation for the elementary students,” Klein said.

History majors and faculty members
took a
weekend trip to the Adirondacks
from Sept.
11 to 13. 

The History Department trip brought students in HIS 290: Historical Methods to the wilderness with the goals of building a sense of community among both students and faculty members, introducing them to the history of the camp and discussing the paths a history major can take after graduation. Students identified the specific skills the major already has taught them and came up with more than two dozen relevant careers that make use of those skills.

“Our goal is to help our students think and talk about the skills they are learning as history majors so that they can communicate effectively with employers who seek those skills,” said Associate Professor Kevin Sheets, who made the trip along with Assistant Professor Ben DeLee, Assistant Professor Laura Gathagan, Associate Professor Scott Moranda, Professor and Department Chair Randi Storch and Professor Brett Troyan.

Based on student feedback, both groups plan to build on their Adirondack getaways in the future.


MTV’s ‘Girl Code’ Comedian to Perform at College

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Comedian Nicole Byer has appeared on popular television shows that include “30 Rock” and “Late Night with Jimmy Fallon.” One of her next stops will be SUNY Cortland to deliver a comedy routine Saturday, Sept. 26, during the College’s Homecoming Weekend. 

Byer’s show takes place at 8 p.m. in Old Main Brown Auditorium, with doors opening at 7:30 p.m. It’s free to attend and sponsored by the SUNY Cortland Student Activities Board.

With more than 225,000 Twitter followers, Byer’s popularity has taken off thanks to her appearances on MTV’s “Girl Code,” a comedy series that features mostly female actresses, musicians and stand-up comics weighing in on topics from a woman’s perspective. Byer also has produced a web series, “Pursuit of Sexiness,” alongside current “Saturday Night Live” actress Sasheer Zamata.

“Girl Code” writer and producer Brooke Van Poppelen, who previously appeared on “John Oliver’s New York Stand-Up Show” and co-authored the Girl Code book, will open the SUNY Cortland show with a discussion about life as a television writer. Audience members also will be able to participate in a question-and-answer session following Byer’s performance.

The show will mark the second SUNY Cortland visit from “Girl Code” cast members in the past year. In February, comedians Tanisha Long and Esther Ku filled the Corey Union Function Room with a well-received performance.

Follow @CortlandSAB on Twitter and Instagram for the latest updates from the College’s Student Activities Board. For more information on Byer’s performance, contact Campus Activities at 607-753-5574.


Family Weekend Registration Fast-Approaching

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SUNY Cortland’s Family Weekend 2015, which will run from Friday, Oct. 2, through Sunday, Oct. 4, includes a musical theater performance by students, an apple picking bus trip for families and a campus 5K run/walk.

The weekend also includes a “Divas Through the Decades” performance at 7:30 p.m. on Saturday, Oct. 3, in the Corey Union Function Room. It serves as a musical tribute to musicians such as Aretha Franklin, Madonna and Taylor Swift. A complimentary dessert buffet will be available during the performance. General admission for the Campus Artist and Lecture Series (CALS) event is $10; all students and children can attend for free.

Other Family Weekend events include a popular community festival, Red Dragon athletic events and educational and recreational activities for the entire family.

This year, for the first time the College is hosting an online registration page for families to purchase tickets to the Family Weekend events. Registration is requested by Wednesday, Sept. 23.

Highlights of the event schedule follow:

Friday, Oct. 2

  • Families can check in and pick up their Family Weekend packets containing tickets and updated schedules from 3 to 8 p.m.
  • At 3 p.m., the SUNY Cortland women’s soccer team plays host to Plattsburgh at Jets Field.
  • At 4 p.m., the College’s nationally-ranked field hockey team takes on Morrisville at the SUNY Cortland Stadium Complex White Field.
  • “Musical Theater Revue,” a special Family Weekend performance featuring senior musical theatre majors, takes place at 7:30 p.m. in the Dowd Fine Arts Center.

Saturday Oct. 3

  • The local Great Cortland Pumpkinfest, a community event featuring arts and craft exhibitors and other entertainment, takes place from 9 a.m. until 5 p.m. in Courthouse Park near downtown Cortland. Bus transportation will be provided every hour from Corey Union.
  • “Classes Without Quizzes,” or fun and educational lectures led by faculty members, will take place at 9:30 a.m. in the Corey Union Fireplace Lounge.
  • “Coffee and Conversation: Staff and Family Mix and Mingle” begins at 10:30 a.m. in Corey Union Exhibition Lounge. Family members will have a chance to interact with key student services members from the College. 
  • College President Erik J. Bitterbaum hosts the President’s Brunch at 11:30 a.m. in the Corey Union Function Room. President Bitterbaum and Student Government Association President Patrick Viscome will offer remarks, followed by student group performances. General admission costs $15 for adults, SUNY Cortland students and children six and older. Children younger than five cost $5. View the President’s Brunch menu.
  • At 1 p.m., the College’s football team hosts Hartwick College at the SUNY Cortland Stadium Complex.

  • An apple picking bus trip to Beak and Skiff Apple Orchard in nearby Lafayette, N.Y., takes place from 2:30 until 5 p.m. A bus with limited seating will depart from Corey Union. Families also are invited to travel in their own vehicles.
  • Three one-hour “Classes without Quizzes: Planetarium” lectures take place at 3:30 p.m., 4:30 p.m. and 5:30 p.m.
  • The “Divas Through the Decades” performance begins at 7:30 p.m. in the Corey Union Function Room.
  • Open family ice skating at Park Center Alumni Arena begins at 9 p.m. Admission costs $3 per person and includes skate rental.

Sunday, Oct. 4

  • The 8th annual Cortland Apple 5K, a 3.1-mile fun run sponsored by SUNY Cortland Recreational Sports, begins at 11 a.m. near the pavilion behind Park Center.
  • The Great Cortland Pumpkinfest runs from noon until 5 p.m. in Courthouse Park.

The College Store will be open throughout Family Weekend with the following hours: 8:30 a.m. to 6 p.m. Friday; 10 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. Saturday; and 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. Sunday.

Visit the Family Weekend frequently asked questions page for additional information about the weekend. Further questions can be directed to Campus Activities and Corey Union at 607-753-2322. Information on lodging in the Cortland area can be found on the College’s Restaurants and Lodging information page.


College to Explore Culture of Thought

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The 2015-16 Rozanne M. Brooks Lecture Series at SUNY Cortland takes on the theme of “The Culture of Thought.”

“The series allows us to explore what has shaped, and is changing, the way humans think about the world around them,” said Sharon R. Steadman, a SUNY Cortland professor of sociology/anthropology who is the lecture series organizer and Brooks Museum director.

“Presenters will address issues such as current thinking about police and policing around the world and changing American thought on same-sex marriage.”

The series, which is free and open to the public, features a reception before each presentation. Two guest speakers — and one program featuring both guest speakers and a student panel — will share their ideas during the fall semester, and the series will feature a poster session and three guest-speaker lectures during the spring semester.

The talks take place on Wednesdays and begin at 4:30 p.m. in Moffett Center, Room 2125. Unless otherwise noted, before each lecture a reception to welcome the speaker starts at 4 p.m. in the Rozanne M. Brooks Museum, Moffett Center, Room 2126.

The series opens Sept. 30 with a presentation by two SUNY Cortland faculty members on gun control and policing in America and a panel presentation on “International Perspectives on Police and Policing” by five international students.

Presenting on America’s firearms and law enforcement situation will be Robert Spitzer, chair of the Political Science Department and a SUNY distinguished service professor, and Herbert Haines, professor and chair of the Sociology/Anthropology Department. Sharing their impressions on police and policing in their home countries will be David Lloyd Henson, Philippines; Cristina Craciun, Moldova; Samuel Ajimoti, Nigeria; and Maira Candida and Marina Melo de Almeida, Brazil. The September program begins at 4:30 p.m. in Room 2125 and will not be preceded by a reception.

  • The Oct. 14 talk, featuring broadcaster Molly Peterson of Southern California Public Radio, delves into the subject of journalism and its role in shaping American views on issues such as climate change. Her presentation, “I See Change: The Transformative Impacts of Crowdsourced Climate Reporting,” describes new strategies that public broadcasters use to engage public interest in action.
  • The Nov. 11 lecture will look at how extremist thinking is on the rise in Europe due to current problems such as the debt crisis and the arrival of desperate refugees. Mabel Berezin, a sociology professor at Cornell University, will discuss “Have the 1930s Returned? The Resurgence of Extreme Nationalism in Contemporary Europe.” Her talk explores the period since the sovereign debt crisis hit Europe in 2010. “There has been a resurgence of right or extreme nationalist parties in virtually every former Western European country and in some Eastern European countries,” she noted. The rightward shift is gaining momentum.

The spring semester will feature the following events:

  • On Feb. 17, Kevin Sheets, a SUNY Cortland associate professor of history, will guide a trip back in time to earlier American methods of enhancing memory, a talent increasingly lost in the 21st century given so many devices that can remember for us. His talk, “The Art of Memory and the Culture of Thought in 19th Century America,” will relate how 19th century men and women embraced the art of memory through mnemonic systems.
  • Timothy Delaune, a SUNY Cortland assistant professor of political science, will discuss “Learning to See Injustice:  Changing Political and Judicial Attitudes toward Same-Sex Relationships” on Wednesday, March 9. According to Delaune, social and political attitudes toward same-sex relationships and the people involved in them have changed dramatically in just a few decades.  His talk analyzes forms of learning that made that shift possible. 
  • SUNY Cortland students will conduct a poster session and presentations titled “The Culture of Thought” on Wednesday, March 30, in Moffett Center. A reception and the poster session will precede the event at 3:30 p.m. in the Sociology/Anthropology Department Atrium. At 4:30 p.m., a series of student presentations will follow in Room 2125. “Students will contribute by covering a wide range of topics such as freedom, migration and other current issues,” Steadman said.
  • How social media has changed notions of what should be private and what should be public about individuals is the topic of the April 13 lecture by Natalie Bazarova, an assistant professor of communications at Cornell University. Her talk, “Communicating Self in a Networked World,” explores the way in which advances in social media technologies have brought unprecedented opportunities for communicating self on different online platforms and the problems that arise.

The 2015-16 Brooks Lecture Series is sponsored by a grant from Auxiliary Services Corporation (ASC) and the Cortland College Foundation. For more information, contact Steadman at 607-753-2308.


Sen. Seward Helps Open New Tennis Complex

Tennis_opening_Seward-web.jpg 09/11/2015

State Sen. James L. Seward helped cut the opening ribbon for the College’s new tennis court complex near the Student Life Center on Sept. 15.

Seward secured $2 million in state funding for the recently completed project, which replaced the College’s old and deteriorating outdoor tennis facilities with 16 new tennis courts, two basketball courts and 50 new parking spaces. The new outdoor complex is located between the Student Life Center and Park Center.

“SUNY Cortland is a well-known leader in physical education, and first-class facilities play a key role in achieving that status,” Seward said. “This will help the school maintain that well-earned reputation and also provide recreation and fitness opportunities for students and community members.”

tennis court opening

Although the College’s primary purpose in rebuilding the tennis courts is to better meet the educational needs of its students, the new courts will also be used extensively by SUNY Cortland’s recreational sports programs and individual students, faculty, staff and members of the community. A number of community groups have traditionally used the College’s courts, which also host regional high school tennis tournaments and Senior Games events.

Construction on the tennis court complex began in March. The condition of SUNY Cortland’s old tennis courts had deteriorated to the point where additional patching was no longer practical or cost effective. The surface contained asbestos fibers, which made removal costly and difficult.


Yearlong Series Considers Migration and Refugee Crisis

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Wars, conflicts and famine are forcing an immigration wave of historic proportions into Europe — one that hasn’t been seen since World War II, according to some scholars. The European Union does not have a comprehensive strategy in place to handle the massive influx of migrants and refugees. And Europe isn’t the only continent being forced to address this problem. From Asia to Australia to Central America, other parts of the world face pressing migration issues too. 

It’s why SUNY Cortland’s Clark Center for International Education is offering a two-part series titled “Global Walls: The Migration and Refugee Crisis” throughout the 2015-16 academic year. The fall semester focuses on immigration in Europe and the Americas while the spring will consider Africa, Asia and Australia.

Remaining fall events include a panel discussion and lecture that are free and open to the public. Five remaining film screenings, limited to campus community members, also will be offered for educational purposes and tied a World First Learning Community course.

“It is important to empathize with these migrants and to understand where they are coming from, why and what they’re going through to reach the wealthier countries of North America, Europe and Asia,” said Alexandru Balas, the director of the Clark Center for International Education and an assistant professor of international studies at the College. “Immigration is probably going to play a major role in the U.S. presidential debates too.

“As well-informed, global citizens, we need to understand the politics of immigration and this is what the theme’s activities try to provide the campus community.” 

Public events during the fall semester include: 

  • A panel discussion on “The Politics of Immigration” during Hispanic Heritage Month, which spans between Sept. 15 and Oct. 15. Details are forthcoming.
  • A Rozanne M. Brooks Lecture Series talk by Mabel Berezin, a Cornell University sociology professor, at 4:30 p.m. on Wednesday, Nov. 11, in Moffett Center, Room 2125. The lecture, titled “Have the 1930s Returned? The Resurgence of Extreme Nationalism in Contemporary Europe,” considers the rise of extremist thinking in Europe due to pressing concerns such as the debt crisis and the arrival of desperate refugees.

Earlier this month, Sinan Ciddi, the director of the Institute for Turkish Studies at Georgetown University, offered a public lecture titled “Turkey & ISIS: A Reliable Ally?”

Roughly 500,000 migrants from Syria, Iraq, Eritrea and several other countries currently are seeking refuge in the European Union, in some instances drowning in their attempts to escape war and famine. Similar events took place in Asia earlier this summer along the coasts of Malaysia, Indonesia and Singapore with migrants coming from Bangladesh and Myanmar.

In Australia, migrant and refugee problems are subcontracted to neighboring countries Nauru and Papua New Guinea. Even in the Americas, migrants from Central American countries such as El Salvador and Honduras try to settle in the U.S. to avoid drug and gang-related conflicts.

The “Global Walls” series spring events will be announced early in the spring semester.

Sponsors for fall events include the International Studies Program; the Clark Center for International Education; the Rozanne M. Brooks Museum; the College’s Political Science Department; the Latino and Latin American Studies Program; the Asia/Middle Eastern Studies Committee; and a Campus Artist and Lecture Series grant.

Stay current with the Clark Center for International Education through its newsletter, website and Facebook page. For more information on the series, contact Balas at 607-753-2250.

Prepared by public relations intern Brandon Romagnoli


Young Grads Travel the Globe to Teach

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“Not all those who wander are lost,” reads the line from The Lord of the Rings

That’s certainly true for Kyle Shea ’14 and Sarah Kelly ’15, two recent graduates who both reached high levels of success at SUNY Cortland and then ventured to teach in foreign countries after their respective graduations. As seniors, both earned the SUNY Chancellor’s Award for Student Excellence, an honor reserved for the highest achievers in the 64-campus SUNY system. Both also were introduced to their new homes through life-changing study abroad travel during college.

Shea, of Walkill, N.Y., currently teaches physical education in Queensland, Australia. Kelly, who grew up in Watervliet, N.Y., and majored in communication studies and Spanish at the College, will spend the next nine months teaching English near Madrid, Spain. Each of them recently took the time to answer questions about life overseas and their penchant to see the world. 

The major decision to move abroad and teach … how and why did you make it?

KS: So I walked for graduation in May 2014 and in June 2014 I left for Australia to complete the final student teaching placement of my degree. Thankfully, I was placed at Chancellor State College and was welcomed as a key member of the health and physical education pod. When I returned home in October I realized how much I truly missed Australia. So I worked through all the paperwork, paid all the fees and worked two jobs so I could afford to come back to the place that truly felt like home to me. On Aug. 1, I arrived in the Sunshine Coast and I love being back. 

SK: Prior to studying abroad in Salamanca, Spain, in the spring of 2014, I had been planning to pursue graduate school immediately following graduation from Cortland. However, after studying abroad my priorities changed. I knew I had to return to Spain. I loved the slower pace of life, the opportunity to improve my Spanish skills and the ease of travel throughout Europe. I thought to myself “graduate school will always be an option in the future, but living abroad for a year may not be.” So I began to explore different ways to spend extended time in Spain, and discovered that teaching English can be one of the best routes for Americans. After researching some programs, getting advice from the study abroad advisors during my internship in the International Programs Office, and contacting another Cortland alum who decided to teach abroad last year, I discovered a well-designed program to meet my needs and help me reach my dream of returning to Spain. Now here I am!

What’s been the biggest adjustment you’ve had to make – whether it’s something related to teaching, or something cultural, or even getting used to new foods? 

Sarah Kelly
Sarah Kelly ’15

KS: Since I’ve been here before there wasn’t much to adjust to this time around. However, the biggest difference is everyone has a different attitude toward work versus play and the friendly — often witty — banter. Australians don’t work two jobs, and they often will “pay people out.” They love their time away from their jobs and they often use their time off to take trips, travel, or even just go surfing with their family rather than taking work home with them.

SK: I haven’t begun teaching yet (the school year in Spain starts Oct. 1), but I am sure that will be a big adjustment when the time comes. Although I have lived in Spain for an extended time before, it has definitely required some cultural re-adjustment once again. I would say the biggest hurdle both times has been the daily meal schedule. Spaniards eat a light breakfast early in the morning, a big lunch between 2 and 4 p.m. and then dinner around 9 or 10 p.m. Naturally I am always famished by the time lunch rolls around in the mid-afternoon! Using Spanish to communicate has also been an adjustment once again. As time progresses I’m certain there will be more hurdles that arise, but that’s all part of the experience! 

Were there any SUNY Cortland experiences that helped prepare you?

KS: The student teaching in Australia helped me set up my life here. However, the physical education program prepared me better than I can imagine as a teacher, and being a resident assistant pushed me to be more passionate. The combined love of teaching and following my heart led me back to Australia and I couldn’t have done it without people in Residence Life and Housing like (director) Ralph Carrasquillo and Melissa Wilson … as well as the physical education faculty, especially Dr. (Eric) Malmberg, Coach (Jean) Wright, Dr. (JoEllen) Bailey, and Dr. (Timothy) Davis. These individuals have shaped me as a person and I am very thankful for the opportunity to learn from all of them. Learning from them made me capable to move my life to the other side of the world.

SK: Without a doubt: study abroad! It’s what inspired me to return to Spain and it has made the initial “culture shock” since arriving much less “shocking.” Hardly any of the Spanish cultural practices are completely foreign to me thanks to my previous experiences abroad.

The thing you enjoy most about your new and what you miss the most about the U.S.

Kyle Shea
Kyle Shea ’14

KS: I love the people here. They are extremely friendly and are always willing to give a helping hand when needing one. Being new to the area leaves you with very few support systems, however the health and physical education pod invites me to events and gives me rides home when it’s raining. It also makes it much easier to make friends when people are more willing to talk to other strangers. I honestly miss pizza from New York. You can’t buy pizza by the slice here and it is very frustrating. It’s similar to California-style pizza, so every bite is crispy. I also really miss my family, especially my mom and my brother. However, they both are extremely supportive of my choice and I needed that to move over to the Sunny Coast.

SK: What I enjoy most about Spain is, without a doubt, the slower pace of life. It is clear the people of Spain value life enjoyment much more than most Americans. For example, Spaniards rarely drink coffee on the run. For them, drinking coffee is a time to sit back, relax and enjoy good conversation with friends or family almost every day. I also really love how affectionate Spaniards are with each other. It’s hard to describe, but I love seeing the way they interact with the people they love most. I think that goes hand-in-hand with their value for tradition and respect for family — another cultural aspect I love. 

Of course I miss my friends and family back home. Sometimes I want nothing more than to teleport them here to be with me. I also miss some of my favorite American foods, such as peanut butter, and my American eating schedule — lunchtime around noon instead of 3 p.m.! — but hopefully with a little more time that won’t be as much of a bother.

Thinking about your general plans for the future, do you see yourself overseas for awhile?

KS: It’s kind of open ended. Currently my plan is to teach for maybe two to three years and then maybe do a country service here. That’s where they put you in a rural town, and you teach in a remote school. Many of the staff members who have completed their country service loved their time in the rural towns and I think that I could learn a lot about teaching and myself in that environment. But, as of right now, I’m just going to focus on teaching.

SK: My plans for the future are open-ended and ever changing. I’ve tossed around the idea of staying in Spain beyond this year, but I will have to evaluate my decision from the financial perspective as well. I think it will also depend on how much I enjoy this year as a language and culture assistant in a Madrid elementary school, and what I discover about myself this year in relation to my career passion for the future. I plan to take it one day at a time and see where things go!


SUNY Cortland Draws, and Keeps, National Spotlight

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SUNY Cortland has once again been listed among the nation’s best colleges by U.S. News & World Report, adding yet another national recognition to the college’s growing list of accolades and achievements.

The College ranked 74th among masters-degree-granting institutions in the North region of U.S. News & World Report’s 2016 Best Colleges edition.

The recognition is just the most recent national acknowledgement of the exceptional educational experience SUNY Cortland offers:

  • Consumers Digest named SUNY Cortland as one of the nation’s 50 “best values” among public colleges and universities, recognizing the institution as a leader in providing affordable, high-quality education.
  • The Princeton Review recently named SUNY Cortland to its “Best in the Northeast” list for 2016, bestowing a stamp of approval given to only the top 25 percent of four-year colleges across the United States. The recognition is based on academic excellence and quality of student life.
  • SUNY Cortland athletes captured four Division III national titles this year: two team titles in baseball and women’s lacrosse and two individual titles in wrestling and women’s gymnastics.
  • The College ended the year with the top Division III athletics program in New York, based on the 2014-15 Learfield Sports Directors’ Cup competition. The College finished 12th among the 450 eligible NCAA Division III programs. The National Association of Collegiate Directors of Athletics (NACDA), Learfield Sports and USA Today present the award annually to recognize overall excellence. SUNY Cortland is one of only five schools nationwide to place in the top 25 each of the 20 years the standings have been compiled on the Division III level.
  • BestColleges.com named SUNY Cortland one of the nation’s top 50 small-town schools based on the College’s high level of student involvement in the community, the availability of local outdoor education opportunities and its environment for student success.
  • BestColleges.com also rated SUNY Cortland as one of the greenest colleges in the United States. The national ranking looks at how successful campuses have been at implementing environmentally sustainable practices and polices. The College is the only SUNY institution on the list, and one of only four institutions from New York state to make the grade.
  • SUNY Cortland is one of only 77 campuses nationwide to win a gold rating by the Association for the Advancement of Sustainability in Higher Education. No other SUNY campuses have scored that well, and only one school in the United States – Colorado State - has done better by achieving a platinum designation. The rating program is based on a range of sustainability information on College initiatives, capital improvements, academic programs and other issues.
  • The federal Environmental Protection Agency named Cortland the green power champion of the State University of New York Athletic Conference, recognizing the College for using more renewable energy than any of the 10 schools in the SUNYAC.
  • The Carnegie Foundation for the Advancement of Teaching re-certified SUNY Cortland for its community engagement classification, making the College the first institution in the State University of New York system to win the reclassification. Fewer than 400 campuses nationwide can claim the designation, which recognizes involvement and commitment to the surrounding community.
  • For the eighth consecutive year, SUNY Cortland was named to the U.S. President’s Higher Education Community Service Honor Roll. It was also the fourth year in a row the College earned “with distinction” honors.

“We are very proud of our institution and the educational experience we offer our students,” SUNY Cortland President Erik J. Bitterbaum said. “We strive to make sure our students have every opportunity to reach their goals, and it is always gratifying when an outside organization recognizes that quality of effort.”

Library Survey Aims to Improve, Promote Services

During the last week of September, Memorial Library will invite students to participate in an opinion survey to help shape the future of Memorial Library’s Research Help services. The survey, which will be available online at bit.ly/1OeuWqY, will solicit feedback from students about their research habits and needs, as well as their satisfaction with library services.  

 As an incentive, students who complete the survey and choose to provide their contact information will be entered into a raffle for a chance to win a Fitbit. 

Library staff request faculty assistance with promotion that will continue through Friday, Oct. 16. Students will receive an email with the online link to the survey the week of Sept. 28.

A secondary goal of the survey is to promote research help services. Librarians can help students identify and access resources, evaluate what they find, narrow their research topics, develop targeted search strategies, cite sources and learn to use citation managers and other research tools. 

Students can request one-on-one research help appointments with a librarian that specializes in their field of study. Request forms are in myRedDragon, in the appointments channel of the library tab. 

Members of the community are welcome to receive drop-in assistance at the Research Help Desk in the main lobby of the library. Librarians can be reached by phone, text, email and chat.  Chat can be launched from the library tab or any online library resource with a green “Click to Ask a Librarian!” button.

For more information, contact Instructional Services Librarian Lauren Stern, library, by email or phone at (607) 753-2288.

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Faculty/Staff Activities

Alexandru Balas

Alexandru Balas, Clark Center for International Education, was chosen to volunteer as a mentor for the Institute for International Education’s program to Myanmar “Connecting with the World: International Relations for Higher Education Institutions.” For 20 weeks Balas will mentor higher-education professionals working on internationalization at universities in Myanmar and Ministry of Education officials from Myanmar.


Philip J. Buckenmeyer, Jeffery A. Bauer, James F. Hokanson and Joy L. Hendrick

Philip J. Buckenmeyer, Jeffery A. Bauer, James F. Hokanson and Joy L. Hendrick, Kinesiology Department, received notice that their article “Cognitive influence of a 5-hour ENERGY® Shot; Are Effects Perceived or Real?” will be published in Physiology & Behavior. In the study, the 5-hour Energy Shot® did not significantly improve short- or long-term cognitive function for selected computer-based tasks despite a high level of perception that it was working effectively compared to a placebo with college-aged participants.


Diane Craft

Diane Craft, Physical Education Department, was appointed in May as a full-time consultant for the Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) as the subject matter expert in physical activity in early care and education. In this role she assists the CDC and states’ departments of public health in promoting the physical activity of young children. Her IPA appointment continues on a part-time basis throughout the 2015-16 academic year.


Anna Curtis

Anna Curtis, Sociology/Anthropology Department, presented a paper titled “Little Me versus My Princess: Prisoners’ Gendered Expectations for Fathering” at the 2015 annual meeting of the Society for the Study of Social Problems held Aug. 21-23 in Chicago.


Theresa Curtis

Theresa Curtis, Biological Sciences Department, and Eric Plante ’15, are coauthors on the manuscript “Microencapsulated equine mesenchymal stromal cells promote cutaneous wound healing in vitro” that recently was published in Stem Cell Research & Therapy. The results demonstrate that stem cells might be a promising new therapy for impaired skin wounds, and encapsulation of the stem cells is a suitable way to deliver a continuous supply of the healing factors to the wound. This research was performed in collaboration with researchers from the Baker Institute for Animal Health, College of Veterinary Medicine at Cornell University.


Karen Downey

Karen Downey, Chemistry Department, and Joshua Eller ’14, had their article titled “Computational assessment of electron density in metallo-organic nickel pincer complexes for formation of P-C bonds” published in volume 36, issue 26 of the Journal of Computational Chemistry. The article reports on research they conducted during Eller’s senior year. Current senior Matt Ellis ’16 is advancing the work further, under the advisement of Downey.


Janet Duncan

Janet Duncan, Foundations and Social Advocacy Department, has been invited by Disability Rights International to provide technical assistance in community living and assessing family needs in Tbilisi, Ga., in October. This work is part of a long-term project with a Georgian NGO, Partners for Equal Rights, and supports its efforts to return children with disabilities to their home communities and to close institutions for children. Duncan will present to Georgian government policy officials about supporting families with children who have disabilities. Disability Rights International is an award-winning human rights organization based in Washington, D.C. Recently a documentary about children with disabilities living in deplorable conditions in Georgia was aired on the PBS program, “The Visionaries.”


John Suarez

John Suarez, Institute for Civic Engagement and service-learning coordinator, had his presentation proposal titled “‘Hire’ Education, Public Purpose, and Student Employers,” accepted for the national Campus Compact’s 30th Anniversary Conference. Mary McGuire, Institute for Civic Engagement director, and Crissana Christie, service-learning intern, are co-presenters. Christie will provoke participants’ explorations of radical designs for higher education through her defense of her “Claimed-Learning Statement” in front of her degree-team, the session’s participants, by describing her learning during the years 2021-2024. 


Tadayuki Suzuki

Tadayuki Suzuki, Literacy Department, had his article, “Realities of War: Using Picture Books to Teach the Social Effects of Armed Conflicts,” published in the Multicultural Education Magazine in August. He coauthored this article with Barbara Fiehn, Jeanine Huss, and Roxanne Spencer at Western Kentucky University. 


Maria Timberlake

Maria Timberlake, Foundations and Social Advocacy Department, received the Daring to Dream Award in Social Change from the Center for Community Inclusion at the University of Maine. She was recognized on June 18 for vision and leadership that promotes social change to advance the rights of people with disabilities.


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