SUNY Canton’s 2018 Outstanding Graduate recipients overcame great challenges on the path to their college degrees.
The awards are given annually at commencement to deserving senior-level students who demonstrate citizenship, scholarship, leadership, and contributions to the campus community.
Jamie L. Reed of Canton, who will be graduating with a degree in Applied Psychology, was selected as the Outstanding Graduate at the bachelor’s degree level. Reed is a mother of six who maintained a full-time job at the Canton Department of Social Services while completing her four-year degree. She completed her course work over her lunch breaks, between her children’s sporting events and after her family had gone to bed.
“One of the things that makes Jamie so special is the way she juggles a very full life while earning some of the best grades in the history of the Applied Psychology program,” said Assistant Professor Barat Wolfe. “She cares so deeply about everything she undertakes, whether it is writing a paper or an exam, running events for local sports teams, fundraising, working, or parenting.”
The civic-minded Reed is a foster parent, who is known for going out of her way to help children find a home and holding fundraisers for families in need. She serves on the Canton Pee Wee Association Board of Directors and the Canton Booster Club and runs the Canton Pee Wee girl’s lacrosse program. She has also inspired other non-traditional students to continue their education at SUNY Canton. She said she could not have done it without the continued support of her husband and children.
“I’m exceptionally grateful for the support of my family and the faculty at the college,” she said. “Determination to succeed was my motivation. I hope I have instilled those same goals in my children.”
Reed plans to continue her education and get a master’s degree in social work.
Michael J. Volpe of Centereach, L.I., who will be graduating from the Criminal Justice program, was selected as the recipient of the Outstanding Graduate Award at the associate degree level. Volpe is a member of Phi Theta Kappa International honor society, the treasurer for Alpha Phi Sigma, the honor society for Criminal Justice students, in addition to the Order of the Sword and Shield honor society. He is a tutor who mentors students taking Biology and has maintained President’s List Honors throughout his time at the college. He volunteers to represent his program and his organizations at admissions events.
“Michael is very serious about his academics,” said Professor Brian K. Harte, who taught Volpe in the Criminal Justice program. “He is very goal oriented and strives for academic excellence in each of his classes.”
Volpe is a member of the college’s Cultural Competency Committee. As a youth with a hearing impairment, he experienced difficulties during his undergraduate education.
“I was met with open arms at this campus,” he said. “I hope to continue the supporting and welcoming environment and help new students feel the same way I do.”
He plans to continue in SUNY Canton’s four-year Criminal Investigation program with a minor in Forensic Science.
Both Reed and Volpe will be recognized at an upcoming student awards ceremony and will be among the students honored at the college’s 110thCommencement Ceremony, which will be held at 10:30 a.m. May 12, in the Roos House Convocation Athletic and Recreation Center.
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 online degree programs. The college’s 15 athletic teams compete at the NCAA Division III level and are joining the North Atlantic Conference beginning in the 2018-19 academic year.