Archive for January, 2010

SUNY Canton Foundation Creates Haitian Student Relief Fund

Friday, January 29th, 2010

Proceeds to benefit students who were affected by the devastating earthquakes

The SUNY Canton Foundation has begun a campaign to help SUNY Canton students from the devastated nation of Haiti.

“We’ve seen both immediate and long-term needs that we can help address through our own SUNY Canton Haitian Student Relief Fund,” said SUNY Canton Librarian and Haitian Fund Chair Kathleen Horton. “We’ll be reaching out to raise the money necessary to provide our own specialized relief efforts, which are intended to benefit students who are attending the College. As with any initiative, our first priority is the health and well being of our students.”

STUDENTS HELPING STUDENTS – SUNY Canton Individual Studies Student Marquise Paillere (left) was left stranded in Port of Prince Haiti after the earthquakes. Her roommate, Management student Xiaoli Zhang, who goes by “Lilly” raised $200 to help Paillere get a bus to the Dominican Republic, and asked SUNY Canton to help fly her home. The SUNY Canton Foundation provided the airfare to get Paillere home and the two were reunited a day after classes began.

Some immediate needs will include purchasing textbooks and funding tuition for students whose families have been affected by the earthquake. Future and tentative goals potentially include sending the SUNY Canton Chapter of Habitat for Humanity to Haiti to aid in the rebuilding efforts. Several faculty and staff members at the College have already come forward to donate to the cause.

“We were initially asked to help a student return to her studies when she was left stranded in Haiti during the winter break,” noted Daniel J. Sweeney, Vice President of Student Affairs. “Through the Foundation, we were able to secure her a plane ticket back and she was able to rejoin her classes.”

SUNY Canton President Joseph L. Kennedy contributes to the SUNY Canton Haitian Relief Fund in the Richard W. Miller Campus Center.

To launch the campaign, and to aid in the creation of the SUNY Canton Haitian Relief Fund, students have begun collecting donations, according to the College’s Diversity and Orientation Director Lashawanda Ingram.

“Upon returning to SUNY Canton, students immediately began looking for ways to help,” she said. “The SUNY Canton Haitian Students Fund gives them the perfect opportunity to help their fellow students. We have already set up several collection points on campus and people have been wonderful in supporting our initial efforts.”

Ingram said that the students plan to set up donation points from noon to 4 p.m. Saturday, Jan. 30, at Kinney Drugs and Tops Market (formerly P&C Foods) in Canton.

The SUNY Canton College Association created ways for students to donate by using their Roo Express accounts, the College’s payment option linked to College identification cards. Students can swipe their cards at the Campus Center Store, or purchase a meal for victims while getting one themselves in Chaney Dining Center.

“Right now, we have about a dozen students that we know of with roots in Haiti,” noted SUNY Canton Director of Public Relations Randy B. Sieminski. “We are working to ease their transition back to College and looking to determine how we can best help them.”

For more information or to make a donation, contact the SUNY Canton Foundation at 315.386.7127, or email

Media inquiries should be directed to Gregory Kie, Media Relations Coordinator, or call 315/386-7528.

Aubertine, SUNY Canton Launch North Country Grant Search

Friday, January 22nd, 2010

State Senator Darrel J. Aubertine and SUNY Canton today launched the North Country Grant Search Web site, a working database of public and private grants designed to provide broad access to available funding for nonprofits, municipalities and economic developers.

“This new Web site is a new and powerful tool for local governments and nonprofits,” Sen. Aubertine said. “Now more than ever our Central and Northern New York municipalities and nonprofits need the best tools at their disposal to take advantage of whatever state, federal and private funding is available. This site is a one- stop shop bringing together on one site the contact information for hundreds of foundations and agencies. The work SUNY Canton has done to make this site easy to use and accessible will go a long way toward ensuring that key projects and initiatives in our region have the funding they need to move forward.”

Senator Darrel Aubertine launched a new Grant Search Web site at the Best Western in Watertown. (Pictured from left to right: Mike Mortimer, Community Liaison for New York State Senator Darrel Aubertine’s office, David Gerlach, SUNY Canton V.P. For Advancement, Ryan Deuel, SUNY Canton Chief of Staff, Joanne Fassinger, SUNY Canton Grants Coordinator, New York State Senator Darrel Aubertine, Travis Smith, SUNY Canton Web Designer, Erica Heintz, Executive Director for the Legislative Commission on Rural Resources, Kathy Finucane, Projects Coordinator for Sen. Aubertine, Jan Isberner, Constituent Liaison for Sen. Aubertine.)

“SUNY Canton is extremely excited to be working directly with Senator Aubertine and his office on the North Country Grant Search Web site,” SUNY Canton President Joseph L. Kennedy said. “It is extremely important, especially during these difficult times, that everyone has access to the tools and resources available to locate additional funding sources. The website presents that opportunity.”

The Senator, his staff and officials from SUNY Canton held a tutorial from 5 p.m. to 7 p.m. today at the Best Western Carriage House Inn, Watertown, where more than 100 representatives from various non-profit organizations and municipalities, along with development experts and the general public observed demonstrations and engaged in a question and answer period to help maximize their use of this new Web site.

The web-based grant locator was designed and developed by SUNY Canton Web Designer Travis Smith. The grant-data was collected and researched with assistance from the college’s Grant Coordinator Joanne Fassinger and Chief of Staff Ryan Deuel, who oversaw the project.

The Web site was made possible through a $50,000 grant secured by Sen. Aubertine in 2006 while a member of the Assembly.

Media inquiries should be directed to Gregory Kie, Media Relations Coordinator, or call 315/386-7528.

Martin Luther King III to Continue the Dream at SUNY Canton, Feb. 23rd

Tuesday, January 19th, 2010

The eldest son of civil rights icon Martin Luther King Jr. will be continuing his father’s dream by advocating social justice and equity at SUNY Canton.

Martin Luther King III is scheduled to speak at 8 p.m. Tuesday, Feb. 23, in SUNY Canton’s Chaney Dining Center. This event is free and open to the public.

“In this day and age, we’ve broken many of the barriers that divided previous generations, but we still have a long way to go,” said Student Activities and College Association Executive Director Michael J. Perry, who helped orchestrate the event. “At every juncture there is an opportunity for social change and another opportunity to make the King family’s dream a reality.”

Much like his father, King is a human rights advocate, community activist, and a political leader. He has been actively involved in significant policy initiatives to maintain the fair and equitable treatment in the United States and abroad. His messages and initiatives all support nonviolent conflict resolution.

“My father’s dream is a profound, eloquent and unequivocal expression of a world where the dignity and worth of all human personality are its ideals,” King said in a speech special to The Washington Times on the day of U.S. President Barack Obama’s inauguration. “It is a dream of a nation where men of all races, colors and creeds ‘live together as brothers’ he added, ‘or perish as fools.’”

In 1986, Mr. King was elected to political office as an at-large representative of over 700,000 residents of Fulton County, Georgia. King is CEO and President of the King Center. He serves as the founding president and chief executive officer of Realizing the Dream, Inc. a national nonprofit organization with an international vision to carry on the important work embodied in the legacies of his parents. Through Realizing the Dream, Mr. King has launched Poverty in America, a national initiative rooted in the legacy of his father’s Poor People’s Campaign.

King’s presentation will be a part of the College’s celebration of Black History Month. To keep up with all of the latest student activities, visit For more information, contact the Student Activities Office at 315.386.7315 or email

Media inquiries should be directed to Gregory Kie, Media Relations Coordinator, or call 315/386-7528.

SUNY Canton President Praises Governor’s Higher Ed Reform

Friday, January 15th, 2010

SUNY Canton President Dr. Joseph Kennedy with New York Governor David Patterson during a recent visit to the campus.

SUNY Canton President Joseph L. Kennedy expressed high praise for Governor David A. Paterson’s proposed reforms to the State’s system of public higher education. The Public Higher Education Empowerment and Innovation Act released today is a sweeping reform package that Kennedy described as the most important and influential piece of SUNY legislation he has seen since becoming the president of SUNY Canton 16 years ago.

“I couldn’t be more optimistic,” Kennedy said. “The Governor’s proposals will transform the way SUNY schools will be able to do business. It will give the entire SUNY system the type of autonomy and flexibility needed to be successful, and it will enable SUNY colleges and universities to become more creative and more independent in running their businesses.”

Kennedy, who is the second longest tenured President in the SUNY system, noted that although SUNY and CUNY colleges will experience budget cuts in the upcoming fiscal year, those cuts will be counterbalanced by the decrease in regulation and the added freedom to generate more income.

“I believe the cuts will be manageable in light of the ability to run our businesses more independently, creatively, and strategically,” Kennedy said. “The leadership demonstrated by the Governor and Chancellor Nancy L. Zimpher in creating this act has been incredible and should be lauded. It is extraordinary.”

Kennedy added, “This act will allow schools the ability to protect jobs, preserve the high quality of a SUNY education, affordably continue to educate the people of New York State, and grow as economic generators to help lead the way out of this recession. I hope others will join me as staunch advocates of this act and help others to recognize its importance to the SUNY system, New York State, and its great citizens.”

Media inquiries should be directed to Gregory Kie, Media Relations Coordinator, or call 315/386-7528.

SUNY Canton Website Explodes with Nearly 2 Million Users in ‘09

Friday, January 8th, 2010

Nearly two million web users from 188 countries visited the SUNY Canton website in 2009, representing a visitor growth of nearly 25 percent from 2008.

The website received a total of more than 4.6 million pageviews during the year, which was an increase of more than a million or almost 30 percent from the year before. During the Fall Semester, the website frequently surpassed 10,000 visitors a day.

“The growth of our website has mirrored the growth and diversity of our enrollment,” said President Joseph L. Kennedy, referring to the record-setting 3,300 students enrolled at SUNY Canton in the Fall Semester. “There were only a handful of countries that didn’t visit our website this past year. We’ll have to work on that for 2010.”

Following the United States, the website received the most visitors from Bosnia/Herzegovina, Canada, Britain, and Russia. China, India, Germany and South Korea also registered a significant number of users.

Beyond the North Country, the cities in New York that registered the most visits of the total 1.9 million users included Syracuse, New York, Watertown, Rochester, Plattsburgh, Utica, and Albany. The number of pages visited and the time spent on the site also increased last year.

“Our site has undergone significant design changes over the past couple of years that have helped in making it more user friendly,” said Kennedy. “Our Web Designer Travis Smith has done a tremendous job, particularly from a navigation and aesthetics standpoint. The growth of our International Programs and online programs have also played a significant role in the website’s growth.”

The College recently expanded upon its 2009 design by further streamlining navigation and adding larger pictures and more interactive multimedia. The site is also linked to social networking sites, including facebook, YouTube, and twitter.

Media inquiries should be directed to Gregory Kie, Media Relations Coordinator, or call 315/386-7528.

SUNY Canton College Foundation Funds Campus Enhancements

Wednesday, January 6th, 2010

The SUNY Canton College Foundation recently announced the recipients of the 4th Annual Campus Enhancement Awards, which aid in the College’s continuing growth and development.

“Campus Enhancement Awards, or grants, are one of the ways that we can use unrestricted donations to help the College grow,” said Vice President for Advancement David M. Gerlach. “During a time when state budgets are under attack, we rely upon donations to fund the creative and innovative projects of our College community. We are deeply grateful for all of the donors who make these programs possible.”

SUNY Canton College Foundation Campus Enhancements will be providing funding for the Annual Scholarly Activities Celebration, to be held April 29-30. Students faculty and staff are invited to submit presentation posters about their unique research or topics of study.

Some unrestricted donations come from SUNY Canton faculty and staff members, who care deeply about the College’s continuing success. More than 150 employees, about 30 percent of all of the employees at the College, donated more than $40,000 to the College Foundation last year.

Among the Campus Enhancement Awards this year were:

  • Funding for the Annual Scholarly Activities Celebration.
  • New Video production equipment for the Graphic and Multimedia Design program.
  • Funding for the 2009 National Championship-winning ASCE/AISC Steel Bridge Team.
  • Enhancements for the Science and Tutoring Center.
  • An ice skate sharpening machine for the SUNY Canton Kangaroos hockey team.
  • Two new Juniper trees for the University Police Department’s “Blue Light Memorial Tree” project.
  • On-line writing center services offered during the College’s Winterterm session.
  • Funding for activity-based learning materials in the Physics and Engineering Science programs.
  • A Human Resources project entitled “Building an Effective Customer Services Model.”
  • A joint legal education presentation in the Legal Studies program.
  • A teaching circles project through the Dean of Academic Services and Retention’s office
  • A science and physics workshop at Salmon River Junior-Senior High School.
  • A new adaptive scanner for use in the Accommodative Support Services department.

In addition to the annual Campus Enhancement Awards, the College Foundation also funds student scholarships, professional development opportunities for faculty and staff, and unique learning and research fellowships.

Media inquiries should be directed to Gregory Kie, Media Relations Coordinator, or call 315/386-7528.

SUNY Canton Welcomes Newest College Council Members

Wednesday, January 6th, 2010

SUNY CantonThe former mayor of Waddington and the Massena police chief are among SUNY Canton’s newest appointed College Council members.

“The College Council is an excellent resource for creating new strategies and measuring the effectiveness of our programs,” noted SUNY Canton President Joseph L. Kennedy. “As we welcome the newest College Council members, it is important to recognize and reflect upon the service of all of our College Council members both past and present. The College would not be where it is today without their commitment and dedication.”

Wesley L. Stitt of Canton was among the retiring members of College Council. Stitt was the College Council Chair from 1996 to 2008. He won the prestigious Distinguished Citizen Award for his extraordinary advocacy and tireless support for higher education.

The newest College Council Members are:

  • Grace Y. Burke of Watertown, a doctor of optometry and director of optometric services at the Watertown Center for Sight, replaced Steven F. O’Brien on the College Council. Burke is currently completing her second term on the New York State Board of Optometry. She is a past president of the Northern New York Optometric Association. She has traveled internationally to provide humanitarian eye care and has hosted community forums locally on a variety of eye health issues.
  • Timmy J. Currier of Massena, the chief of police for the Massena Police Department, replaced Joseph L. Thesier on the College Council. Currier has been an adjunct instructor in the College’s Criminal Justice program and is also a founding board member of the St. Lawrence County – David Sullivan Law Enforcement Academy. He’s a certified police instructor and a member of both New York State and international associations of Chiefs of Police. Currier is also a junior varsity basketball coach at Massena Central High School.
  • Cecily LaVigne Morris, an associate court attorney for the St. Lawrence County Supreme Court, replaced Joseph L. Baruth on the College Council. Morris is a former attorney for the firm of LaVigne, Morris, and Peets in Massena. She is a member of the New York State and St. Lawrence County bar associations, a member of the St. Lawrence County Domestic Violence Task Force, and a past member of the Hospice and Palliative Care of St. Lawrence Valley Board of Directors.
  • Roger J. Sharlow of Waddington, the owner of RJS Consulting, a firm that provides import and export services for CSX Transportation, replaced Stitt on the College Council. He’s the former mayor of Waddington and a former town trustee. Sharlow has also served with the Madrid-Waddington Central School Board, including three years as board president. He also served as the secretary to the St. Lawrence County Local Government Task Force Executive Committee. This year, Sharlow received the Silas A. Wright Award, the Democratic Committee’s highest honor.

All campuses of the State University of New York are advised by a ten-member College Council. Nine members are appointed by the Governor to serve in varied terms. In addition, a student representative is elected annually.

The College Council is entrusted with broad powers of advice and counsel. Members are concerned with all major institutional policy decisions, setting academic standards, budget review, and all manner of decisions that impact the growth and further development of the College.

Media inquiries should be directed to Gregory Kie, Media Relations Coordinator, or call 315/386-7528.

CSEA Helps with Campus Sustainability

Tuesday, January 5th, 2010

SUNY Canton’s Civil Service Employees Union (CSEA) Local 603 has provided new energy efficient appliances for break rooms around campus.

Union President Joseph Kelly said that they had provided eight Energy Star-rated refrigerators and nine microwave ovens during the Fall 2009 semester. The purchases included a brand-new 21 cubic-foot refrigerator in French Hall, which came just in time for potluck holiday meals and on-campus celebrations.

The purchase of the new appliances is another step in a larger campus-wide effort to conserve energy. To read more about the College’s green initiatives, visit

Media inquiries should be directed to Gregory Kie, Media Relations Coordinator, or call 315/386-7528.