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Cortland Impresses SUNY Chancellor

Cortland Impresses SUNY Chancellor


State University of New York Chancellor Kristina M. Johnson visited the SUNY Cortland campus for the first time this week, touring the campus, talking with students, faculty and staff and serving as guest of honor at a Sesquicentennial Reception hosted by President Erik J. Bitterbaum.

Johnson was so impressed by her experience that she said her first visit will definitely not be her last.

“The commitment to service, the commitment to mitigate climate change, the engagement campus-wide. It's really a family. It's impressive and my hats off to the president,” Johnson said. “The faculty are just so into the scholarship and into student learning.

“I’d like to come back. I played lacrosse in college, so I’d like to come back for a lacrosse game. I’d like to come back and learn more about the STAR-NY tutoring program. There’s just so many things. I’ve seen little windows open into the world of Cortland and I’d like to come back and see more.”

STAR-NY is a consortium of 27 colleges that share resources to offer free online tutoring programs to students. It was developed at SUNY Cortland and is run from the College. Coordinators of the program gave a presentation to Johnson, who has made student accessibility and success one of her top priorities.

Statewide, continued support of the state Educational Opportunity Program (EOP), which provides financial, academic and other support to disadvantaged students, is another key goal for Johnson, who met with several SUNY Cortland EOP students while they toured the College’s Student Life Center.

“Individualized education is something I am very passionate about,” Johnson said. “And you’re doing it at Cortland.”

Johnson, who was inaugurated as chancellor of the 64-campus in September, came to Cortland as part of a commitment to visit all SUNY campuses early in her tenure.

She arrived on campus Wednesday, Feb. 13, and participated in a special faculty and staff reception commemorating SUNY Cortland’s 150th year. The chancellor spent the night at the Lynne Parks ’68 SUNY Cortland Alumni House, then met with President Bitterbaum and members of his cabinet before touring campus on Thursday, Feb. 14.