Archive for July, 2010

SUNY Canton Receives Nearly $600,000 NSF Grant for Scholarships

Friday, July 30th, 2010

Over the next four years, SUNY Canton will receive a $596,160 grant from the National Science Foundation (NSF) to be used for scholarships given to engineering technology students.

Dr. Lawretta Ononye, associate professor of physics, serves as the principal investigator and director of SUNY Canton’s project proposal. She is assisted by colleague Dr. Stephen Frempong, professor of electrical engineering technology and co-principal investigator of the proposal, as well as JoAnne Fassinger, the College’s grants coordinator.

Ononye and Frempong

“This is a monumental accomplishment for us as we continue to do everything we can to make college an option for all students, irrespective of their economic circumstance,” said SUNY Canton President Joseph L. Kennedy. “I thank the efforts of Dr. Ononye, Dr. Frempong and JoAnne for working as hard as they did over the last few years to make this a reality for SUNY Canton and our future students.”

SUNY Canton’s project, entitled “Scholarships for Engineering Technology,” will be funded through the NSF Scholarship for Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (S-STEM) project. It will provide scholarships for 18 full-time students who have demonstrated superior academic performance but face economic hardships. An annual award of $7,200 for up to four years will help support the scholars through their degree completion at the College.

The scholarships will be awarded to students in pursuit of a bachelor’s degree or enrolled in a two-year associate degree program with plans of earning their four-year degree.

“A grant of this magnitude is an extraordinary achievement for SUNY Canton and brings us to a new level of grantsmanship,” said Fassinger, who noted that the NSF award is a first for the College. “Grants from the National Science Foundation are considered to be among the most prestigious and competitive in higher education. It is truly a sign of SUNY Canton’s tremendous growth in all areas.”

Programs at the College affected by the S-STEM project include electrical engineering technology, mechanical engineering technology, civil engineering technology, engineering science and alternative and renewable energy.

“I’m very excited that the countless hours and energy we put into the proposal has paid off,” Ononye said. “This award will encourage all students to consider engineering, science and technology, including underrepresented groups and women.”

Frempong emphasized the S-STEM project is of great significance to SUNY Canton and its Canino School of Engineering Technology.  “It has both intellectual merit and broader impact,” he stated. “The funding will help with new support programs, including a mentoring program, STEM seminar, and a tutoring center. We will have the resources to develop a summer program to boost scholars’ physics and mathematics backgrounds. It will also allow us to offer field trips to local businesses and into industry.

“It will enhance the ongoing efforts at SUNY Canton by promoting retention and building a community of scholars,” Frempong added. “It will assist in the placement of students in the workforce or graduate school.”

According to NSF’s website, the S-STEM program “makes grants to institutions of higher education to support scholarships for academically talented, financially needy students, enabling them to enter the workforce following completion of an associate; baccalaureate; or graduate-level degree in science and engineering disciplines.”

Institutions receiving awards are responsible for selecting scholarship recipients, reporting demographic information about student scholars, and managing the S-STEM project on campus.

For more information about SUNY Canton’s S-STEM project, visit:

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

SUNY Canton Air Conditioning Professor, Founder Passes Away

Tuesday, July 27th, 2010

SUNY Canton is mourning the loss of the founder of the College’s air conditioning engineering technology program.

Professor Emeritus Harry E. King, Class of 1940, taught at SUNY Canton for 37 years and remained active with the College as part of the Alumni Board of Directors until passing away early on Monday, July 26, 2010. He was 90 years old.

Harry King

“Harry King was one of the College’s biggest supporters and advocates for nearly 70 years,” said SUNY Canton President Joseph L. Kennedy. “We’re lucky to have his legacy live on in so many of us. He touched the lives of everyone around him and we are grateful for the impression he left on our community as a student, professor, mentor and friend.”

Mr. King, who grew up in Redwood, N.Y., graduated in 1940 from the College with a degree in technical electricity. During the next six years, he worked for the George H. Hyde Plumbing and Contracting Co. in Ogdensburg and married Wilda “Willie” Barton King in 1943. Mrs. King, who also worked for a time at SUNY Canton, predeceased her husband in August 2008 just after the couple celebrated their 65th wedding anniversary.

He returned to his alma mater in 1946 and started what was then the heating, ventilation and air conditioning program (HVAC).  One of the most profound ways Mr. King influenced SUNY Canton was teaching, developing a wonderfully crafted air conditioning program that prepared students for successful careers in the field.

“After his family, I think his greatest love was teaching young people,” said Ronald L. Woodcock, who served as co-chair of SUNY Canton’s Centennial Campaign and was a 1959 graduate of Mr. King’s program. “He took trips to Syracuse with students to show us job opportunities, set up job interviews and see interesting HVAC projects.  He exposed his students to the real world of the heating and air conditioning industry, and we are thankful for his dedication in helping all of us achieve much during our lives.”

That sentiment was evident in 2008 when alumni, family and friends of Mr. King came together early in the year and raised enough funds to name the new air conditioning laboratory after him.

“The efforts of nearly 200 people coming forward and raising over $150,000 to name the laboratory after Mr. King is perhaps the greatest tribute I know that expresses how Harry influenced so many lives,” said SUNY Canton Vice President for Advancement David M. Gerlach. “It illustrates the impact he had on all of us and the Harry E. King Air Conditioning Engineering Technology Laboratory now serves as a constant reminder of his continued generosity and passion for SUNY Canton.”

Mr. King was honored by SUNY Canton several times throughout his life, including being named Distinguished Alumnus in 1979 and Distinguished Faculty two years later.

The year of his retirement, 1983, was commemorated by the campus and the students with the yearbook being named in his honor. Alumni also honored his retirement by establishing ‘The Harry E. King Scholarship’ that same year in recognition of his long devotion to the College and to his caring interest in the many students he taught throughout his tenure.

In 2003, SUNY Canton recognized Mr. King’s continued dedication and commitment to the College by naming the annual Honors Convocation after him.

A long time resident of Canton, Mr. King was also an active member in the local community. He served as a volunteer board member for United Helpers Nursing Home for 25 years. Earlier in July, he was awarded Emeritus status by the organization in Ogdensburg and celebrated for his outstanding commitment to its mission and vision.

His family remains in the Canton area, including his three daughters and two sons-in-law, Barbara King, JoAnne and James Danehy ’65, and Martha ’74 & ’78 and Peter MacArthur, as well as four grandchildren and three great-grandchildren.

Funeral services will be held at 12:00 p.m. on Thursday, July 29, at the First Presbyterian Church of Canton with Rev. Michael P. Catanzaro officiating. Calling hours will be Wednesday from 2:00-4:00 p.m. and 6:00-8:00 p.m. at the Lawrence Funeral Home, Canton, where a Masonic Service will be held on Wednesday evening at 7:45 p.m. Burial will be held privately in the Redwood Cemetery.

Those desiring may send memorial contributions to: Harry E. King Scholarship, SUNY Canton College Foundation, Canton, NY or to the First Presbyterian Church of Canton, 17 Park Street, Canton, NY or United Helpers Maplewood Campus, State Street, Canton, NY 13617.

Mr. King’s full obituary can be found at:

Construction Begins on New SUNY Canton Residence Hall

Friday, July 23rd, 2010

Construction of a new 305 bed residence hall is now underway at SUNY Canton with a completion date set for next August.

The residence hall is the second major facility slated for completion in 2011, along with the College’s new Convocation, Athletic, and Recreation Center, known as Roos House.

A sketch of the future Grasse River Suites

“About 15 years ago, we were a college with an enrollment just over 2,000 students,” said SUNY Canton President Joseph L. Kennedy. “Now we have more than 3,300 students and we’re still growing at an extraordinary rate. Not only are our residence halls on campus full, but we’re maxing out the available student housing in the area as well.”

The apartment-style complex, featuring 83 suites with 305 beds, is being built adjacent to the Cooper Service Complex and the University Policy facility.  The residence hall will be for rising juniors and seniors and current plans include a mini-store, multi-purpose classroom and meeting space, and a large open courtyard for recreation and outdoor activities.

Crews began working in mid-June with a timeline of about 14 months – just in time for the incoming class in August 2011.

Total project costs are currently estimated at approximately $22 million for the LEED Silver Certified building.  Total construction costs are $ 20,500,000.  Total costs including financing are approximately $28 million.

“We’ve seen explosive growth in enrollment numbers, especially in our four-year programs, and we expect this trend will continue,” said Vice President of Advancement David M Gerlach ’83. “The addition of this new residence hall is critical as we add degree programs and welcome more four-year students to our community.”

The foundation of the new Grasse River Suites is nearly completed.

Northland Associates of Liverpool will be heading up the project, its third simultaneous construction undertaking at SUNY Canton. They are currently working on the College’s Convocation, Athletic and Recreation Center and finishing an overhaul of Nevaldine Technology Center.

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

On-Campus Housing Full at SUNY Canton

Wednesday, July 14th, 2010

On-campus residence halls at SUNY Canton have filled to capacity for this fall, prompting campus officials to seek information on available off-campus student housing opportunities in the Canton area.

Landlords who expect to have vacancies or homeowners interested in renting rooms in their homes may contact the Residence Life office at (315) 386-7513 or email their information to

Students studying in the the lobby of a residence hall.

The tight housing situation is due to continued growth in enrollment, according to Courtney B. Bish, SUNY Canton’s Director of Residence Life. The College anticipates a third consecutive year of record-breaking enrollment. Last year, 3,300 students attended in the fall semester.

“Our extraordinary enrollment growth has created an incredible demand for on-campus housing,” said Assistant Vice President for Advancement Randy B. Sieminski, who oversees the College’s admissions offices. “With the upcoming opening of our new athletic complex and the addition of even more new bachelor’s degrees, it’s a truly exciting time for our College.”

Applications to SUNY Canton have increased nearly 20 percent in each of the past four years, and the college expects to set an all-time record for applications this year, surpassing the old mark of 5,331 set in 1977.

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

International Students Arrive at SUNY Canton

Tuesday, July 13th, 2010

More than 50 international students have begun their American education at SUNY Canton.

Students and faculty members from the American University in Bosnia and Herzegovina (AUBIH), Dnipropetrovs’k State University in Internal Affairs in Ukraine, Kazan State Finance and Economics Institute in Russia, and Lomonsov Moscow State University in Russia arrived in Canton on Sunday, July 11.

Moscow State student works with Edouard Mafoua after class.

Hoon Suk Choi, an international student from Moscow State University works with SUNY Canton associate professor of economics Edouard K. Mafoua after class. Choi originally hails from South Korea.

“We provide a rewarding educational experience for these students that allows them to remain with their peers while they are immersed in a new culture and environment,” SUNY Canton President Joseph L. Kennedy said. “We have developed outstanding international educational relationships with these students, faculty members and colleges. Our partnerships with institutions around the world are strengthened by the experiences these students have while on campus and in our community.”

Students from AUBIH have already begun their work for the summer program, taking part in SUNY Canton’s dual degree program with their institution. Students took two hybrid courses, risk management and ethics, via videoconferencing for the three weeks prior to coming to the College. They will finish their coursework while at SUNY Canton and are scheduled to graduate in 2011. They will be the second class from AUBIH to graduate from SUNY Canton, with the first class receiving their diplomas this past May.

Kazan State students take look at items at the Farmer's Market.

Kazan State Finance and Economic Institute students Liubov Mironova, Ruslan Tukhvatullin, Raili Nuretdinova, and their chaperone Dina Urazmetova look at handmade gifts by Caroline Leakey at the Canton Farmers Market.

Both Russian institutions will have students taking part in two programs: Global Finance, Economics and Culture, as well as English as a Second Language (ESL) and Culture. The Global Finance program was developed in conjunction with Moscow State University and will feature lectures focusing on financial management and global economics topics followed by workshops examining case studies and business application.

It’s the first time SUNY Canton has partnered with Dnipropetrovs’k State University in Internal Affairs in Ukraine. The students from Ukraine will take part in the American Legal and Criminal Justice System Program, which will reviews the American legal system, the foundation of American law as well as the criminal justice system and the role it plays in the American legal system. The lectures will be integrated with the visits to courts and other local authorities for practical portion of the program.

The students from Russia and Ukraine will earn certificates for completions of their respective courses at the summer program’s graduation ceremony on Thursday, July 29.

Students from each of the programs will also have the chance to immerse themselves in the North Country and the American way of life. In addition to the daily excursions for their respective programs, students will visit local businesses and farmers markets, the Remington Art Museum, the 1000 Islands, and The Wild Center in the Adirondacks. The students will also travel to Niagara Falls and Lake Placid and will conclude their experience with a four day trip to New York City.

Another part of the cultural experience is American Family Night, where families around the North Country welcome the visiting students to their homes for dinner, take them out for ice cream, and introduce them to American customs and traditions.

“These summer programs are rare on college campuses because of the time commitment, but we’re lucky to have some wonderful faculty and staff who spend so much of their time off working to make this such a great opportunity for both SUNY Canton and the students,” Fiacco said. “We are grateful for the people in this community who understand the value of this program, because it’s their passion that has kept it a successful one for the last several years.”

The international summer programs began in 2006 with an inaugural group of students from Moscow State University. Since, Fiacco said the number of programs offered has increased, as have the number of institutions who participate each year.

“One of the best parts is seeing all the students come together,” Fiacco said. “Last year, students from each country would have their own barbecues, and then they began inviting each other to them. They set up soccer and basketball games, pitting one country against another, and had so much fun. It was inspiring to watch them grow as a group together and knowing it was because of their experience here at SUNY Canton.”

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

SUNY Canton Artist Exhibits at Saranac Lake Gallery

Thursday, July 8th, 2010

A SUNY Canton Faculty Member’s new work blends layers of natural chaos with artistic design.

Matthew J. Burnett, an Assistant Professor in the College’s graphic and multimedia design program, is currently displaying his most recent collaborative painting project “Clusterphobic” through July 26, at the 7444 Gallery in Saranac Lake.

Matthew Burnett paints

SUNY Canton Assistant Professor Matthew J. Burnett puts the finishing touches on a one of his collaborative paintings currently on display in the 7444 Gallery in Saranac Lake.

His most recent work is about layers. Burnett and his colleague Scott Fuller have created a series of large-scale mixed media panel paintings inspired by the layering of beautiful or compelling patterns he’s observed during time spent in the Adirondacks. Fuller is department chair of the Visual Arts program at St. Joseph’s College in Maine and is an advisory committee member for SUNY Canton’s GMMD program.

“We are constantly trying new ways to push the mediums we work with to new levels,” Burnett said. “This body of work lends itself to innovation by its very nature. A natural occurring phenomenon like a pile of sticks, or the textures of a tree, can influence one of these pieces.”

Fuller prepares the base layer by silk-screening repeating patterns to a large panel. On a separate panel, Burnett paints his own compositions and physically cuts away areas to create negative space. The two panels are attached together to create an overall unified composition of the two artists’ work.

“We do not make matter, we collect and reassemble it,” Burnett said in a description of the show. “We do not materialize new relationships, we enable new expressions of what we have experienced.”

Also featured at the 7444 gallery is a community minded effort by Burnett and gallery director Todd Smith. The pair refurbished a vintage cigarette machine to dispense small pieces of artwork created by more than 20 regional artists. Each piece costs $1. The machine, loosely dubbed “Smokin’ Art,” is part of the burgeoning Saranac Lake Arts scene, and will be featured at various public locations during the “Third Thursday” celebrations.  “Saranac Lake is becoming a hub of contemporary and traditional artists, and I’m proud to be a part of it,” Burnett said.

A sample of artwork dispensed by a refurbished cigarette vending machine.

One of the small works of art dispensed by a refurbished cigarette vending machine at the 7444 Gallery where Burnett is displaying.

For more about the artists, visit and

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