Posts Tagged ‘Joseph Kennedy’

SUNY Canton to Induct Hall of Fame Class of 2017

Thursday, May 25th, 2017

SUNY Canton Hall of FameCeremony to be held during Alumni Weekend celebration, June 2-4

SUNY Canton will welcome several alumni, friends and former leaders into the college’s Hall of Fame during a ceremony at 5:30 p.m. Friday, June 2 in the Richard W. Miller Campus Center.

The Hall of Fame was created in 2011 to celebrate the past, present and future of the college by recognizing those who have made significant contributions to their field, their communities and to the storied history of SUNY Canton. The 2017 inductees are:

  • Preston C. Carlisle is the founding attorney of The Carlisle Law Firm, P.C., in Ogdensburg. He has generously supported scholarships and athletics at SUNY Canton for many years, as well as many other organizations in the North Country. He has served on the Canton College Foundation Board.
  • Edward N. Coombs, class of 1986, has held senior financial positions with a number of companies, and as a member and officer of the Canton College Foundation Board, has helped the organization maintain financial stability. He and his wife, Christine (Howard) Coombs, class of 1985, established the Coombs-Muscarella Endowed Scholarship in 2013 to benefit a student active in extracurricular activities and with prominent leadership skills.
  • Former SUNY Canton President Joseph L. and Dine Kennedy brought transformative change to SUNY Canton for two decades during Kennedy’s presidency. Under his innovative leadership, enrollment doubled and he added four-year programs to the college’s strong selection of two-year and certificate offerings. Mrs. Kennedy is a dedicated community volunteer who has worked with a number of organizations in the North Country. They both remain connected to SUNY Canton and the Canton College Foundation through their membership in the Payson-Martin Society and scholarship support.

Joseph and Dine Kennedy

  • Richard F. Layo, class of 1976, is a successful businessman who played hockey for SUNY Canton from 1974 to 1976. As captain, he led the team to claim their third and fourth consecutive national championship titles. Thanks to his generosity, SUNY Canton erected a statue of Coach Terry Martin in 2013, which is located at the Roos House Convocation, Athletic and Recreation Center.
  • David R. Nichols, class of 1963, is a world-renowned guitar maker who has crafted instruments for famous musicians such as Johnny Cash, B.B. King and ZZ Top. He gives back to the community by generously teaching his craft out of his shop in Malone, which has become a mecca for visitors from all over the world.
  • The O’Neill Family/A.W. Collins, Corporation have been supporters of SUNY Canton for more than 30 years. A.W. Collins is an amusement and vending company serving all of St. Lawrence County. The O’Neill family were lead donors for the college’s athletic turf field lighting and contribute their time and assistance to Canton youth sports, among other community projects.
Richard Layo, David Nichols, Rosella Todd Valentine

From left to right: 2017 Hall of Fame Inductees Richard F. Layo ’76, David R. Nichols ’63, Rosella Todd Valentine ’68

  • Daniel J. Sweeney, class of 1975, worked in many capacities at SUNY Canton during his career, including vice president of student affairs and dean of students. In all of his roles, he was a mentor to young adults. A longtime advisor to the Delta Kappa Sigma Fraternity, two alumni created a scholarship in his name: The Daniel J. Sweeney ’75 Delta Kappa Sigma Fraternity Leadership Endowment.
  • Rosella Todd Valentine, class of 1968, worked for 31 years as an Office Technology Teacher for BOCES Northwest Technical Education Center in Ogdensburg and also served as the state’s first Teacher Ambassador for occupational education. A dedicated volunteer for many organizations, she joined the Canton College Foundation board in 1977, is a past president of the Alumni Association and is currently a member of the Payson-Martin Society.

The induction ceremony is just one of the special events scheduled for Alumni Weekend. The college will also host academic tours, special fraternity gatherings, a hiking excursion, a half-century luncheon for the class of 1967 and a “CantonFest” barbeque. For more information or to register, visit


About SUNY Canton

SUNY Canton is Northern New York’s premier college for career-driven bachelor’s degrees, associate degrees and professional certificate programs. The college delivers quality hands-on programs in engineering technology, health, management and public service and recently received number one rankings in library resources, library services and tutoring services in the SUNY Student Opinion Survey. The college’s faculty members are noted for their professional real-world experience in addition to outstanding academic credentials. SUNY Canton OnLine offers hundreds of flexible and convenient courses as well as 13 exclusively online degrees. The college’s 15 athletic teams compete at the NCAA Division III level and are conference members of the newly formed American Collegiate Athletic Association.

Two SUNY Canton Buildings Named for Former College Leaders

Monday, June 8th, 2015

SUNY Canton has renamed two buildings in honor its former presidents during its Alumni Weekend celebration. The Faculty Office Building was renamed for President Emeritus Earl W. MacArthur, and the Grasse River Suites was named after retired President Joseph L. Kennedy.

Kennedy, Szafran, MacArthur

Retired President Joseph L. Kennedy, current President Zvi Szafran and President Emeritus Earl W. MacArthur pose in front of the newly named MacArthur Hall, formerly known as the Faculty Office Building.

MacArthur Hall and Kennedy Hall will stand alongside Wicks Hall, Nevaldine Hall, Payson Hall and Cook Hall, which were all named after the most famous educators and administrators in the college’s history.

“Dr. MacArthur implemented the first set of formal building dedications on this campus,” SUNY Canton President Zvi Szafran said. “We are continuing his legacy of naming buildings after key individuals.”

Joyce MacArthur and President Emeritus Earl W. MacArthur pose in front of a new plaque signifying the MacArthur Hall milestone.

Joyce and President Emeritus Earl W. MacArthur pose in front of a new plaque honoring their twenty years of service to the College.

MacArthur was president from 1972 to 1992. During his time at the college, he established the Canton College Foundation, which helps provide scholarships for students and financial support for faculty initiatives. He set new enrollment records when the college added nearly 1,000 students during his first four years as President. He was an advocate for the Educational Opportunity Program, which helped SUNY Canton continue its mission of access for all students. He also championed computer literacy and created one of the very first academic computing and word processing centers in the SUNY system.

“Whatever I achieved was because of the team that I worked with,” MacArthur humbly said. “I worked with a great group of administrators and outstanding faculty.”

He received the college’s Distinguished Citizen Award in 2005 and received an honorary doctorate from Clarkson University. He and his wife Joyce were inducted into the SUNY Canton Hall of Fame in 2011 for the continuing contributions to the college and community.

Retired President Joseph L. Kennedy poses with family in front of the newly named Kennedy Hall.

Retired President Joseph L. Kennedy poses with family in front of the newly named Kennedy Hall.

Kennedy was President from 1993 to 2013. He also grew the college’s student enrollment, which doubled during his tenure. Among his numerous accomplishments, he added four-year programs to the college’s strong selection of two-year and certificate offerings. In fact, all of SUNY Canton’s bachelor’s degrees were created through his leadership. Kennedy orchestrated and endorsed online academic offerings, and the college became one of the largest online programs in the SUNY System.

“Among his other accomplishments, Dr. Kennedy helped bring college courses to high school students,” Szafran added. “First face-to-face and then online.”

Kennedy also helped fuel growth in the college’s athletic program, which expanded from a two-year to a four-year conference, became a provisional member of the NCAA and added five new sports. Alongside the growth, the college adopted the Kangaroo as its athletic name and mascot.

“It was an honor for me to serve as the president of SUNY Canton,” Kennedy said. “It was exciting, always challenging and almost always fun.”


Current President Zvi Szafran, Retired President Joseph L. Kennedy, and President Emeritus Earl W. MacArthur

Kennedy worked with the SUNY Canton foundation and alumni association to construct the suite-style living complex, which opened in 2011. The former president also oversaw the completion of the Roos House Convocation, Athletic and Recreation Center that same year.


About SUNY Canton

SUNY Canton is Northern New York’s premier college for career-driven bachelor’s degrees, associate degrees and certificate programs. The college delivers quality hands-on programs in engineering technology, health, management and public service. Faculty members are noted for their professional real-world experience in addition to outstanding academic credentials. SUNY Canton OnLine offers hundreds of flexible and convenient courses, as well as 10 exclusively online bachelor’s degrees. The college’s 14 athletic teams compete as provisional members of the NCAA Division III and the USCAA.

SUNY Canton Graduates to Reunite for Alumni Weekend

Friday, May 29th, 2015

Special events include dedication ceremonies, Hall of Fame inductions, and ‘Bands, Brews & BBQs

SUNY Canton will welcome back graduates to reconnect with classmates, celebrate the contributions of two past presidents and honor those who have made a lasting impact on the college during Alumni Weekend June 5-7.

Alumni Weekend

The event kicks off at 10 a.m. Friday, June 5, with a dedication ceremony to rename the Faculty Office Building in honor Earl W. MacArthur, Ph.D., who served as president from 1972 to 1992. His many accomplishments include creating the Canton College Foundation and the Office of Sponsored Research.

Earl & Joyce MacArthur

“Dr. MacArthur achieved record-setting enrollment during his tenure and ensured a bright future for SUNY Canton,” said Vice President for Advancement and Canton College Foundation Executive Director David M. Gerlach. “It’s fitting that we recognize his achievements by naming one of the most prominent buildings on our campus after him.”
At 3 p.m. Friday the college will host a second ceremony to rename the Grasse River Suites in honor of Joseph L. Kennedy, Ph.D., who was president from 1993 to 2012. He oversaw the construction of several new buildings on campus during his presidency, including Grasse River Suites, which was completed in 2011.

Joseph & Dine Kennedy

“Dr. Kennedy completely transformed the college’s landscape and moved SUNY Canton from a two-year to a four-year baccalaureate-granting institution,” Gerlach added. “His innovative leadership will have a lasting impact on our students, their families and our community.”

Five individuals who have made significant contributions to the college will be inducted into SUNY Canton’s Hall of Fame at 5 p.m. Friday in the Richard W. Miller Campus Center’s Woodcock Conference Suites. The 2015 inductees are:

Marti King MacArthur, class of 1974 and 1978, served as committee chair for the SUNY Canton Centennial Gala Auction fundraiser in 2006 and raised $40,000 for an unrestricted endowment. Marti was also a member of the SUNY Canton Alumni Board from 2003 until 2014 and has been a member of the Canton College Foundation Board since 2009.

Sylvia M. Kingston, class of 1978, is the proprietor of both Josie’s Little Pizzeria and Sylvia’s Lounge and Eatery in Canton. She established The Lloyd J. and Josephine F. Kingston Scholarship as a tribute to her parents in 1997, and has been a member of the Canton College Foundation Board of Directors since 2000.

Glenn C. Werlau, class of 1957, is the founder and president of Werlatone Inc. A longtime supporter of the college, he has shared his knowledge of the radio frequency component industry with SUNY Canton students and has funded several electrical engineering field trips for those majoring in Electrical Engineering Technology.

New York State Senator Patty A. Ritchie was elected to the State Senate in 2010 and serves as chair of the Senate Agriculture Committee. In 2015 she was named deputy majority leader for Senate and Assembly Relations, a position that strengthens her ability to represent her Central and Northern New York constituents, as well as lead on issues that are important to all New Yorkers. Patty is a strong advocate for SUNY Canton and has assisted the college with a number of achievements during the past several years.

Michael M. Peebles, class of 1964, retired from SUNY Canton in 2010 after serving as a faculty member in the Science Department for 42 years. In 1997 he received the Distinguished Faculty Award, SUNY Canton’s highest honor for teaching professionals. His contributions to the community include serving as a sanitarian for the New York State Association of Milk and Food, as well as a member of the Canton Club and the Canton Pee Wee Association.

Alumni Weekend Guests

Among the events open to the public during the weekend is AlumFest’s “Bands, Brews & BBQs,” which will be held from 3 to 9 p.m. Saturday at the Roos House Convocation, Athletic and Recreation Center. Tickets are $40 per person, and the event will feature live music; food, beer, craft and wine vendors; and fireworks.

For more information about the weekend’s events, visit or contact the Office of Alumni Affairs at (315) 386-7127 or (800) 811-6727.


About SUNY Canton

SUNY Canton is Northern New York’s premier college for career-driven bachelor’s degrees, associate degrees and certificate programs. The college delivers quality hands-on programs in engineering technology, health, management and public service. Faculty members are noted for their professional real-world experience in addition to outstanding academic credentials. SUNY Canton OnLine offers hundreds of flexible and convenient courses, as well as ten exclusively online bachelor’s degrees. The college’s 14 athletic teams compete as provisional members of the NCAA Division III and the USCAA.

SUNY Canton Scholarship Honors Joseph and Dine Kennedy’s Service

Tuesday, June 26th, 2012

The College Foundation has received approximately $100,000 in initial donations from SUNY Canton students, faculty, staff and community members.

President Joseph and Dine Kennedy

SUNY Canton President Joseph L. Kennedy and his wife Dine at the College’s 104th Commencement Ceremony.y members.

A new scholarship endowment has been established to honor the commitment and dedication of SUNY Canton President Dr. Joseph L. Kennedy and his wife Dine.

“There is no better way to pay tribute to the commitment of the Kennedys than to establish this endowment,” said Vice President for Advancement David M. Gerlach. “I’m not alone in this feeling. So far, we’ve raised close to $100,000 in gifts and pledges.”

Kennedy served the College for almost two decades and will be retiring August 31.

The Joseph L. and Dine Kennedy Endowed Scholarship waspublicly announced at the College’s 104th Commencement Ceremony by Student Government Association President Daynelle Richards, a 2012 graduate of the health services management program.

“For the past 19 years, students have benefitted from the advocacy from Dr. and Mrs. Kennedy,” Richards said. “The Student Government Association (SGA) contributed funds to help create this new endowment. Thisscholarship keeps with the spirit the Kennedys have always shown during their time at the college, and will benefit students who demonstrate high academic achievement for years to come.”

Prior to the public announcement, the Canton College Foundation had received support from SUNY Canton Faculty and Staff, who wanted to continue the Kennedys’ legacy. Financially, the SGA donated $20,000 to the new endowment and the College Association donated $30,000. Faculty and staff and alumni have contributed an additional $46,000 to create the scholarship.

“Dr. Kennedy has made a difference in students’ lives and in the overall life of SUNY Canton and the Northern New York community,” College Council Chairman Ronald M. O’Neill said. “It is a fitting tribute that the Kennedy family is honored through a scholarship that will continue their legacy beyond their time.”

Kennedy began rebranding the College when he started his career in 1994. Under his leadership, the College has moved from a primarily two-year school to a four-year baccalaureate degree granting institution ofhigher learning. The College now offers 23 career-driven bachelor degrees in addition to its associate and certificate programs. Kennedy initiated the creation of SUNY Canton OnLine featuring 190 courses each semester and 8 fully online bachelor’s degree programs.

“It is difficult to put into words all of Dr. and Mrs. Kennedy’s accomplishments without overlooking something,” Gerlach said. “The campus we have today, the feeling of family this College offers to our students, their parents, and to our faculty and staff, all stem from Dr. and Mrs. Kennedy’s deep commitment to making SUNY Canton the best educational experience for all. They have transformed the College and over the past several years we have likely become the fastest growing college in New York State.”

The entire physical space of the campus has been changed under his presidency.  New building additions include the Richard W. Miller Campus Center, the Newell Veterinary Technology Center, the AthleticFacility, nicknamed Roos House, and the Grasse River Suites, an apartment-style residence hall.

The College’s enrollment has grown from below 2,000 students in 1993 to nearly 4,000 students today. The focus of providing the highest quality career-driven education for the most economical price has always been Kennedy’s top priority. He said, “A SUNY Canton education changes the lives of our students, their families, and our community because we provide the training for successful careers.”

Under his guidance, the assets of the Canton College Foundation have grown from $1 million to over $40 million today. The College awards nearly $500,000 annually in scholarship support to students in need.  As a result of Kennedy’s innovative leadership, the Foundation has received million dollar gifts from professors Richard W. Miller and Herman Kalberer as well as alumnus Joel Canino, Class of 1959, Elaine Claxton Pidgeon, and an anonymous donor.

“The College’s accomplishments under Dr. Kennedy’s leadership are extraordinary,” said Provost and Vice President for Academic Affairs Carli C. Schiffner, who will serve as Interim President upon Kennedy’s departure. “The entire faculty and staff look forward to continuing the successes and momentum he has created. I feel honored to be among the donors for this scholarship and all that it stands for.”

Dine Kennedy is a dedicated community volunteer who has worked with the Traditional Arts of Upstate New York (TAUNY) Evergreen Campaign, has served as a Board member for Hospice and Palliative Care of St. Lawrence Valley, and represents St. Lawrence Valley Educational Television Council, Inc. on the National Leadership Council for Advancing Public Service Media in America. She served 10 years on the Benton Board of the Canton Free Library, including serving as Treasurer and President, served on the North Country Public Radio Community Advisory Board; served 11 years as a Board member, vice-chair, and chair for WPBS, and served 8 years on the Board of Trustees for Canton-Potsdam Hospital. St. Lawrence University recognized her volunteer efforts in 2010 by awarding her their North Country Citizen Citation.

To make a donation to the Joseph and Dine Kennedy Scholarship endowment, contact the SUNY Canton College Foundation, 315-386-7527, 800-811-6727, or email

SUNY Potsdam & SUNY Canton Hire Joint Chief Financial Officer

Monday, June 4th, 2012

Natalie Higley to Begin as Newest Vice President for Business Affairs & Administrative Services on July 1

Natalie Higley

Natalie Higley has been chosen as the first Vice President for Business Affairs and Administrative Services for SUNY Canton and SUNY Potsdam.

SUNY Canton and SUNY Potsdam have appointed the first chief financial officer to serve both campuses, as part of their ongoing shared services strategy.

Natalie Higley has been selected as the Vice President of Business Affairs and Administrative Services for both institutions. She will begin service on July 1.

“The position presents a unique and innovative opportunity to join the SUNY Potsdam and SUNY Canton teams,” Higley said. “I look forward to working closely with both campus communities.”

In the newly created role, Higley will serve on the administrations for both SUNY Potsdam and SUNY Canton. This hire continues the implementation of shared services between the campuses, through the SUNY Campus Alliance Network.

Reporting to the President on each campus, the CFO is responsible for maintaining both colleges’ fiscal health and smooth administrative functioning. Areas reporting to the position on both campuses include financial and business services, budget, internal controls, physical plant and facilities, purchasing, payables, human resources, payroll, Research Foundation operations, and auxiliary services.

Higley will play a key role on each campus as a member of both colleges’ management teams, setting the overall direction for the institutions.

“I would like to welcome Natalie Higley as the newest member of our President’s Council. I expect that her experience from working at other campuses will provide us with insights leading to innovation in shared services and continued growth for our two institutions, which in turn benefits the greater North Country community,” said SUNY Potsdam President Dr. John F. Schwaller. “Our campus has led the charge for financial transparency and resource accountability, and I am confident that Natalie is dedicated to continuing that commitment.”

SUNY Canton President Dr. Joseph L. Kennedy added: “The hiring of a joint position at the vice presidential level is a significant step toward reducing our combined administrative costs to the benefit of the collective student body. We are making commendable efforts to meet SUNY’s goals. Natalie Higley is highly capable and suitable to meet the needs of both colleges. I’m confident she will enthusiastically present us with opportunities that will help both colleges continue to grow and thrive together.”

With more than 14 years of experience in executive management, Higley has demonstrated diligence in her work overseeing finances at both private manufacturers and public universities.

Originally from Scottsville, N.Y., Higley earned her bachelor’s degree in organizational management and master’s degree in management from Roberts Wesleyan College, going on to work as controller for Nationwide Precision Products and CFO at the First Allied Corporation, both of Rochester.

Higley began her higher education career as the accounting coordinator/ manager for the University of North Florida in Jacksonville, Fla., before moving on to the University of Georgia system, where she worked as vice president of business affairs for Bainbridge College in Bainbridge, Ga., for five years. She was most recently the chief business and financial officer and assistant director at the Skidaway Institute of Oceanography in Savannah, Ga., which is also part of the University System of Georgia. Higley is currently working toward her doctorate in higher education administration at Georgia Southern University.

Previously, the colleges worked together to hire a joint veterans and military service coordinator to extend educational opportunities to former and active armed forces members at both campuses.

About SUNY Potsdam:

Founded in 1816, and located on the outskirts of the beautiful Adirondack Park, The State University of New York at Potsdam is one of America’s first 50 colleges. SUNY Potsdam currently enrolls approximately 4,350 undergraduate and graduate students. Home to the world-renowned Crane School of Music, SUNY Potsdam is known for its handcrafted education, challenging liberal arts and sciences core, excellence in teacher training and leadership in the performing and visual arts. For more information, visit


SUNY Canton Schedules Summer-Long Footbridge Project

Thursday, May 31st, 2012

SUNY Canton is updating its bridges with scenic timber-framed covered walkways.

The footbridges spanning the Grasse River and connecting the College to Downtown Canton will be unavailable beginning at 7 a.m. on Monday, June 4. Pedestrian access to the area will be unavailable during the project. The estimated completion date is August 10, shortly before the start of the Fall 2012 Semester.

Students walking over the footbridge.

“The new bridges will add to the atmosphere of the walking paths and islands bordering our campus,” said SUNY Canton President Joseph L. Kennedy. “We’ve selected a design similar to the pedestrian bridge spanning the Kicking Horse River in Golden, British Columbia (Canada).”

The footbridge replacement project is one of approximately seven ongoing construction undertakings currently underway at SUNY Canton. All projects are slated to make the campus more attractive, more educationally accommodating and more energy efficient.

The College’s footbridges were opened alongside the campus in the late 1960s. They have served as an identifiable landmark specific to the SUNY Canton and inspire fond memories for many alumni.

The Kicking Horse River pedestrian bridge

The Kicking Horse River pedestrian bridge in Golden, BC.

Murnane Building Contractors, Inc., will be building the bridge and C&S Engineers, Inc., provided consulting services. Both companies have worked with the College previously. Murnane is currently overseeing renovations to Wicks Hall, and C&S is currently involved with exterior renovations of Heritage and Rushton Residence Halls and was involved with the Grasse River Suites Residence Hall and the new Convocation, Athletic, and Recreation Center, nicknamed Roos House.

Media inquiries should be directed to Gregory Kie, Media Relations Manager, or call 315/386-7527.

SUNY Canton Graduates More than 900 Students

Saturday, May 19th, 2012

SUNY Canton President Joseph L. Kennedy conferred degrees for approximately 920 students at the College’s 104th Commencement Ceremony.

The ceremony was held today, Saturday, May 19th in the Convocation Athletic and Recreation Center, nicknamed Roos House.

Commencement 2012

“This is my 21st and final commencement at SUNY Canton,” Kennedy said. “I’m very proud of today’s graduates and I’m honored to spend the day with them and their families. I look forward to further growth and development in the College’s academic programs, with the end result of seeing even more students enroll, graduate and launch successful careers in the future.”

The President is scheduled to retire on August 31. He said he is keenly interested in future commencement ceremonies as an indicator of the College’s ongoing success. “I will always feel a sense of accomplishment when I see SUNY Canton students complete their educations,” Kennedy said.

President Kennedy congratulating students.

The top five bachelor’s degrees awarded, listed in order of popularity, were: management, criminal investigation, health care management, legal studies, and graphic and multimedia design.

The top five associate degrees with the most graduates were nursing, liberal arts, criminal justice, veterinary science technology, and business administration.

Notable honoraries at ceremony included:

  • Karen M. Spellacy, professor of economics, received the SUNY Chancellor’s Award for Excellence in College Service. Spellacy was awarded for providing dynamic education in her business and economics courses, in addition to her inspirational leadership in a variety of roles. Based on her tremendous service, Spellacy will assume the role of Interim Provost on Sept. 1.
  • John F. Conklin, associate professor of nursing, received the SUNY Chancellor’s Award for Excellence in Teaching. Faculty members and students have said Conklin demonstrates a deep and genuine concern for his students and helps them to succeed in any way that he can. He also was instrumental in the development of the college’s practical nursing certificate program, as well as the online Bachelor of Science in Nursing program.
  • SUNY Canton Student Government Association President Daynelle N. Richards, a health care management major from Ozone Park delivered the address on behalf of her fellow graduates. Richards was selected as the recipient of the 2012 David R. Maynard Student Activities Award.
  • Kristen B. Roberts, the College’s associate director of residence life and residence director of the new Grasse River Suites was honored with the Northstar award. This award is completely determined by the student body to recognize a faculty or staff member. Roberts was selected for making a positive impression on students and their parents with her positive, can-do attitude. She’s been a role model for many students and is involved with many student-run organizations. The student government association president presented the award to Roberts.
  • State Senator Patricia A. Ritchie was presented with the Honorary Alumna Award from the SUNY Canton Alumni Association for continually supporting and promoting SUNY Canton. She recently backed the College’s newest educational options to benefit of both students and the greater North Country Community, and has demonstrated a remarkable interest in the ongoing success of the College and its graduates.

During the week prior to Commencement, the David Sullivan-St. Lawrence Law Enforcement Academy held a special ceremony for more than 20 graduates of the semester-long intensive course. Many of the Academy graduates were sworn in as new officers in area police departments.

Commencement 2012

Additionally, nearly 90 graduates of SUNY Canton’s Nursing program were recognized at a special ceremonial pinning ceremony. Registered Nurses are in high demand, and many of the graduates will immediately start their employment at area hospitals and health-care facilities.

Media inquiries should be directed to Gregory Kie, Media Relations Manager, or call 315/386-7527.


SUNY Canton Criminal Investigation Graduate Earns Outstanding Recognition

Tuesday, May 15th, 2012

A motivated leader with career aspirations of becoming a New York State Trooper has been selected as the Outstanding Graduate at the Baccalaureate Level.

Matthew J. Wissman of Forestburgh, who is graduating with a Bachelor’s Degree in criminal investigation, recently received his award at the recent Faye White Honors Convocation.


“He’s the student that I can always count on to step up and help out,” said Elizabeth A. Erickson, an assistant professor in the criminal investigation program. “He’s really outgoing and happy to be a leader; I hate to see him leave us.”

SUNY Canton President Joseph L. Kennedy presented him with a ceremonial medallion to adorn his academic regalia for SUNY Canton’s 104th Commencement Ceremony to be held 10 a.m. Saturday, May 19, in the field house portion of the Convocation Athletic and Recreation Center, (nicknamed Roos House). Nearly 900 students are eligible to participate in Commencement.

Wissman is Senior Resident Assistant at the brand-new Grasse River Suites residence hall. He has demonstrated impeccable maturity and responsibility, according to Kristen B. Roberts, associate director of residence life and the 2012 Northstar Award Recipient.

“Matthew treats everyone with fairness and respect, and encourages others to do the same,” Roberts said. “He’s always one step ahead and proactively addresses issues before they arise.”

He’s been an active volunteer at events on campus and in the community; he worked with children in an after school program at Ogdensburg Free Academy, and participated in a career day at Gouverneur Central High School.

Mr. Wissman is the Vice President for the Criminal Justice Student Association and Secretary for the SUNY Canton chapter of the American Criminal Justice Honor Society. He is an active runner and a member of the men’s cross-country team. Wissman recently volunteered with the President’s 5K Run/Walk challenge, and previously helped out with the annual Nicole Fleury 5K race. He’s been on both the President’s and Deans’ Lists for his outstanding academic achievement and is a member of the College’s chapter of the Golden Key Honor Society.

Media inquiries should be directed to Gregory Kie, Media Relations Manager, or call 315/386-7527.


SUNY Canton President Hosts Second 5K Challenge

Tuesday, May 1st, 2012

Dr. Kennedy running last year's 5KSUNY Canton President Joseph L. Kennedy will be promoting health and fitness by hosting and running in the second President’s 5K Run/Walk Challenge.

The “5K with Dr. K” will begin at 4 p.m. Thursday, May 10, near the College’s turf field next to the Roos House Athletic Center. The course will include the scenic cross-country trails bordering the Grasse River. The race and the walk are free and open to the public, but pre-registration is strongly encouraged.

“There are a number of ways we encourage healthy lifestyles on campus,” Kennedy said. “We have spinning classes in our brand-new fitness center, healthy food options, and we are moving toward a tobacco free environment. Of everything we do, this race is my favorite event to promote fitness on campus and in our community.”

The first 25 registrants will receive a free t-shirt. Registration is available online at:

Kennedy is an avid runner who participates in numerous community-sponsored races.

Last year, the inaugural “5K with Dr. K” attracted approximately 120 runners and walkers from both the College and the area. On campus, the race has inspired good-natured rivalry among faculty, staff, and students.

For more information contact: Farren Davis at 315-379-3902, or


SUNY Canton Wins ASCE Steel Bridge Competition

Monday, April 23rd, 2012

The SUNY Canton student steel bridge team outscored its regional competitors by building the most efficient and economical bridge at the American Society of Civil Engineers (ASCE) Upstate New York Student Conference Championships. The competition is co-sponsored by the American Institute of Steel Construction (AISC).

Bridge Team in Action

SUNY Canton student steel bridge team vice president and bridge designer William W. Corbine of Potsdam (far right) tightens the final bolts on the College’s bridge during the assembly stage of the competition.

The College hosted the bridge portion of the competition on Friday at the brand new Roos House Athletic Center. It was the 13th time in 17 years that SUNY Canton students have captured the regional title.

“Congratulations to our student steel bridge team for their regional victory and good luck to them in the nationals,” said SUNY Canton President Joseph L. Kennedy. “I’m very proud of the time and energy they’ve poured into designing and making their bridge. I’m also extremely proud of all the work the team did to make hosting the competition such a great success. I’m certain that these experiences and successes will serve them well as they prepare for successful careers.”


The competition challenges student teams to construct a one-tenth-scale model bridge designed to meet certain criteria, including construction speed, lightness, display, stiffness, economy, and efficiency.

“The students made all of the right choices from the beginning to make this bridge the winning entry,” said Robert R. Blickwedehl, a College instructor and SUNY Canton ASCE student chapter advisor. “I look forward to seeing them compete against top colleges and universities in the nation once again this year.”

The team will now prepare to head to the ASCE/AISC national competition scheduled for May 25 at Clemson University in South Carolina.

The judges use a formula to project how much implementation of each entry would cost, and the total cost determines the winning entry. The SUNY Canton bridge entry would cost an estimated $4.3 million and took just under eight minutes to construct. It was approximately $1.8 million cheaper and was assembled eight minutes faster than the nearest rival entry from second-place winner École de Technologie Supérieure (ETS) from Montreal, Quebec.

Bridge Team

In order of finish, after the SUNY Canton and ETS entries were:

  • Cornell University
  • Clarkson University
  • SUNY at Buffalo
  • Hudson Valley Community College
  • The United States Military Academy at West Point
  • Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute
  • Rochester Institute of Technology

“This was the best regional competition that we’ve been to as far as I can remember,” said Paul D. Hitchman, a faculty advisor for the student steel bridge team. “I can’t thank the faculty, staff, students and administration enough for helping us make the event a tremendous success.”

Media inquiries should be directed to Gregory Kie, Media Relations Manager, or call 315/386-7527.