Posts Tagged ‘John Conklin’

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 Foundation Awards Inaugural Margaret D. Sovie Nursing Scholarship

Monday, November 1st, 2010

The SUNY Canton Foundation recently awarded a brand-new nursing scholarship to a devoted and deserving North Country student.

Margaret A. McDonnell of Rensselaer Falls was the inaugural recipient of a $5,000 award named in honor of the late Margaret D. Sovie, PhD. The scholarship was created by her husband, Alfred L. Sovie of Ogdensburg, a graduate of the class of 1958. McDonnell had the chance to meet and thank her benefactors at the College’s recent Scholarship Luncheon.

William Doe, Margaret McDonnell, and Alfred L. Sovie.

Pictured are 1959 graduate William J. Doe, Margaret A. McDonnell, the inaugural recipient of the Margaret D. Sovie Nursing Scholarship, and 1958 graduate Alfred L. Sovie.

“We are very proud of the donors who step forward to remove the barriers between a student and their education,” said SUNY Canton President Joseph L. Kennedy. “In a time of overwhelming decreases in state funding, foundation scholarships have become more important than ever. In many cases scholarships are the only way a student can afford to access a high-quality education.”

McDonnell and her family have been involved in Haitian relief efforts before and during last year’s catastrophic earthquakes. She has assisted as a translator with a medical team and has been involved with the mission organization, Family Life Outreach. The nursing student was assisting with chiropractic clinics in Cap-Haitien a week before the earthquakes hit.

“Ms. McDonnell was honored to receive this scholarship created in the name of such a highly-regarded healthcare professional,” SUNY Canton’s Director of the Nursing Program John F. Conklin said. “Scholarships for future nurses are an investment in the overall quality of the health of our community.”

The Margaret D. Sovie Scholarship will be awarded annually to a second year nursing student who demonstrates compassion and an eagerness to become a Registered Nurse, as McDonnell has, Conklin said.

Margaret was an internationally recognized scholar, researcher, educator, and nursing administrator as well as a prolific author. Her studies have impacted clinical and practical nursing protocol throughout the United States and other countries. She was known for her fearlessness, outspoken manner, and her strong commitment to mentoring and patient care services.

Her name is associated with other prestigious awards, including the Margaret D. Sovie Writer’s Award, given by the Nursing Economic$ [sic] editorial board. In addition, the University of Rochester Medical Center created the Margaret D. Sovie Lecture Series, and Strong Memorial Hospital created the Margaret D. Sovie Center for Advanced Practice.

Over 300 students at SUNY Canton received either a foundation or state scholarship this year and scholarships awarded this year totaled more than $300,000. The Margaret D. Sovie Scholarship was one of 11 new awards to be created for the 2010-2011 academic year.

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

SUNY Canton’s Honors Convocation Named to Honor Canton’s Linda L. Fay

Wednesday, April 7th, 2010

A dedicated and decorated former nursing faculty member has been selected as the namesake of the SUNY Canton Honors Convocation.

“I am very pleased to announce that the 2010 Honors Convocation will be named for Professor Emerita Linda L. Fay,” said SUNY Canton Provost William R. Trumble. “She was recommended unanimously by the Recognition and Awards Committee for her illustrious service to the College and the greater North Country community.”

Linda Fay

Distinguished Professor Emerita of Nursing Linda L. Fay was selected as the namesake of the 2010 Honors Convocation at SUNY Canton. Fay is pictured in the College’s state-of-the-art nursing lab.

The Linda L. Fay Honors Convocation will be held at 4:15 p.m. Wednesday, May 5, in the Richard W. Miller Campus Center’s Intramural Gym. More than 200 students will be receiving awards denoting their academic success, character development, and community involvement during the ceremony. The event is free and open to the public.

“This is a day about the students,” Fay said about Honors Convocation. “I’m honored to be able to share it with them.”

Fay began her career at the College in 1972 and was granted emeritus status after teaching nursing for more than three decades. She received the SUNY Canton Distinguished Faculty Award in 1995, the Chancellor’s Award for Excellence in Teaching in 1996 and the Chancellor’s Recognition Award for Outstanding Service to SUNY and the people of the North Country in 1998.

“Linda was an innovative and tireless teacher and program director who became an exemplary role model for faculty and students at SUNY Canton,” said John F. Conklin, the current director of the College’s Nursing program. “Her mission was to always leave things a little better than when she found them. She taught here for more than 30 years, and certainly made the College a better place.”

During her tenure, she served on many committees, wrote grants, and developed seven 15-week courses for the bachelor of science, nursing program implemented last year at the college.

At the request of colleagues, students, and alumni, the Linda Lahey Fay Nursing Award was established in 2003. It recognizes annually a senior graduate who best upholds the saying, “No act of kindness, no matter how small, is ever wasted,” which represents some of Fay’s personal mantras and beliefs.

After graduating from SUNY Plattsburgh in 1968, Fay worked at Metropolitan Hospital in New York City as head nurse of their pediatric tuberculosis unit and then became the nurse manager of intensive care. She earned her master’s degree in education from St. Lawrence University in 1979.

Fay is currently a Board of Director member for the Claxton-Hepburn Medical Center, CHMC Health Systems, the Canton Housing Authority and the Grasse River Heritage. She is the Director of Public Relations for SEM-Fund, a microfinance organization in Senegal, Africa, an officer in the Canton area Zonta Club and a cook for the Canton Free Will Meal program. She is a past member of the Canton Rescue Squad, was a professional program developer for the American Heart Association, item writer for the New York State Regents External Degree Program, and a volunteer with the American Red Cross, American Cancer Society, St. Lawrence County Health Initiative, and Hospice of St. Lawrence Valley.

She lives in Canton with her husband, Daniel G. Fay, who’s a professor in the School of Business and Liberal Arts. They have three children, Mrs. Steven (Kelley) Glasgow, Edward and John, and two grandchildren, Garret and Paige. She is considered the adoptive mother of Anywar Ricky Richard, the founder of Friends of Orphans, an organization that supports former child soldiers in Uganda, Africa. The Fays brought Richard to SUNY Canton as a guest speaker. His speech is widely remembered as one of the most poignant and informative lectures at the College.

New Practical Nursing Program Starts this Fall at SUNY Canton

Friday, May 29th, 2009

SUNY Canton is broadening the spectrum of its career-driven healthcare options by adding a Practical Nursing program.

The one-year certificate program will begin this fall alongside the College’s recently added four-year Bachelor of Science in Nursing program.

“The Practical Nursing program rounds out our nursing options to serve a greater population,” said SUNY Canton President Joseph L. Kennedy. “Students can come for the one-year certificate, two-year Registered Nurse major, the four-year bachelor’s in nursing, or progress through all three programs. Students in all of these programs will have fantastic career opportunities waiting for them when they graduate.”

Nursing Students

Nurses from all three programs are in high-demand locally and nationwide. According to the Department of Labor, Bureau of Labor Statistics, employment of LPNs is expected to grow 14 percent between 2006 and 2016, which is faster than the average for all occupations.

“The Nursing program perfectly reflects our ladder curricula, where students start in a one-year program and then stay for a two or four-year degree,” said William R. Trumble, the College’s Provost and Vice President for Academic Affairs. “We’ve seen fantastic success by students who choose to utilize this approach to their education.”

The program was designed to meet the needs of local health care organizations as well as those of the incoming students, according to Nursing Program Director John F. Conklin. “Previously, students would have to commute to Saranac Lake or Watertown to earn a similar degree,” Conklin said. “Were it not for this degree, we could very well have seen a decrease in qualified staffing here in St. Lawrence County.”

Career opportunities for LPNs include hospitals, nursing homes, mental health institutions, private homes, community health clinics, and public health departments.

Coursework in the program covers English, anatomy and physiology, psychology, and nursing courses that include supervised clinical practice in a patient care setting.

“Students who graduate from our Practical Nursing program will have met the prerequisites for admission into the RN program,” Conklin added. “They can also accumulate additional college credits through electives and supplementary courses that will help no matter where life leads.”

SUNY Canton is now accepting applications for admission into the competitive one-year Practical Nursing program. For more information, or to apply, contact the SUNY Canton Office of admissions at 315.386.7123, 1.800.386.7123, or email

“We’d encourage prospective students to apply to this program as soon as possible,” Director of Admissions Jonathan Kent said. “All of our nursing programs are highly competitive and spots fill up quickly with extremely qualified students. The Practical Nursing program is particularly appealing because students know that they can begin their career with a terrific job after just one year of study.”

SUNY Canton offers a wide variety of career-driven bachelor’s, associate, and certificate programs, as well as three master’s degrees in conjunction with SUNYIT, Utica. Most of SUNY Canton’s new four-year programs are designed so students can take them on-campus, online, or both. SUNY Canton OnLine features more than 100 courses online each semester. The College’s athletic teams belong to the NAIA’s Sunrise Conference, enabling students to compete in their respective sports for four years. Construction is now underway for the College’s new Convocation, Athletic, and Recreation Center.

SUNY Canton Receives Approval for Four-Year Nursing Degree

Tuesday, March 31st, 2009

SUNY Canton has received approval to offer a Bachelor of Science in Nursing.


Students working in SUNY Canton's newly renovated nursing lab.

The College’s Admissions Office will begin reviewing applications for acceptance immediately for courses beginning in the Fall 2009 Semester. The program will be a natural progression for nursing students that have received their associate degree. The third and fourth years of the program will be available entirely online.

“The approval of this program has been highly anticipated by our students, alumni and members of our nursing community,” said SUNY Canton President Joseph L. Kennedy. “It was created with the convenience and flexibility that is the hallmark of all our online courses and degrees. Registered nurses with associate degrees, many of whom have work and family obligations, will now be able to return to their studies to obtain a bachelor’s degree online.”

The new nursing program is the College’s first bachelor of science degree program and the College’s 16th bachelor’s degree overall. New York State Gov. David A. Patterson signed a master plan amendment that allows the College to offer the bachelor of science degree in addition to its existing bachelor of technology degrees.

Nursing Lab

“Year after year, we see a tremendous interest and enrollment in our nursing program,” said Nursing Program Director John F. Conklin. “Registered nurses recognize that a bachelor’s degree will help them to advance their careers and prepare them for a broader scope of nursing career options. Often, they can use their employer’s tuition reimbursement programs to subsidize or completely pay for their advanced degree.”

The nursing program typically sees the majority of its students gain successful employment immediately following graduation. The SUNY Canton Office of Career Services indicates that 100 percent of the 2008 graduating class of nurses were either employed or continuing their education within six months of graduating.

“This program seamlessly connects with our two-year degree,” noted Peggy LaFrance, an associate professor of nursing. “Students will continue to learn how to creatively solve complex health related problems, while applying concepts of leadership and management within the nursing profession.”

This program was created in part to help meet the demand for more advanced trained nurses amidst a nation-wide professional health care shortage. Employment of registered nurses is expected to grow much faster than the average for all occupations through 2020 according to the Department of Labor Bureau of Labor Statistics. Registered nurses are projected to generate 587,000 new jobs, among the largest number of new jobs for any occupation.

The Bachelor of Science Nursing program is offered exclusively through SUNY Canton OnLine, the highly successful Internet branch of the College. Courses are offered in a partially self-guided, self-paced environment with asynchronous responses, meaning a student can participate in a course almost anytime from anywhere there is a connection to the World Wide Web.

The College also has plans to add an upcoming one-year Licensed Practical Nursing certificate program in the future. The proposal for that program is pending further state approval. When it is approved, students can enter a complete ladder curriculum that will lead them from a one-year certificate to a four-year degree within the nursing program.

For more information view the Nursing B.S. webpage.

SUNY Canton offers a wide variety of career-driven bachelor’s, associate, and certificate programs, as well as three master’s degrees in conjunction with SUNYIT, Utica. Most of SUNY Canton’s new four-year programs are designed so students can take them on-campus, online, or both. SUNY Canton OnLine features more than 100 courses online each semester. The College’s athletic teams belong to the NAIA’s Sunrise Conference, enabling students to compete in their respective sports for four years.

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

SUNY Canton Associate Professor Lauded by Chancellor

Monday, May 14th, 2007

Mary Jane DoelgerSUNY Canton Associate Professor of Nursing Mary Jane Doelger has been honored with the esteemed Chancellor’s Award for Excellence in Teaching, an accolade presented for her unique, engaging, and captivating learning methods.

SUNY Chancellor John R. Ryan will be personally presenting Doelger with her award at SUNY Canton’s 99th Commencement Ceremony held 10:30 a.m. Saturday, May 19.

Mrs. Doelger is a 1982 alumna of SUNY Canton, with an associate degree in Nursing. She went on for her bachelor’s in Nursing from SUNYIT. In the 1990s, while working at St. Lawrence Psychiatric Center in Ogdensburg and raising a family, she simultaneously completed two master’s degrees: one in Nursing with a concentration in Psychiatry from Syracuse University; and a Public Administration degree with a concentration in Health and Human Services from Russell Sage University.

As a direct result of the high standards she has for her students and her drive to see them become successful, she is held in high regard by nursing administrators and staff members throughout the North Country. Furthermore, she is committed to innovation and using alternative teaching and learning strategies so her students enjoy their class experience.

“Mary Jane has an almost uncanny ability to ‘read’ students and is able to adapt her teaching method to fit their learning needs and styles,” Nursing Program Director John Conklin said. “She always holds the interest of the students whether in the laboratory, classroom, or clinical setting.”

Mrs. Doelger’s students said her instructional methods incorporate theatrical concepts and even games infused with intelligence. She has also continually demonstrated kindness, humor, fairness, and dedication to all of her students.

She and her husband, Peter, reside in Waddington. They have three grown and married children: Eric and his wife, Kerri; Austin and his wife, Pam; and Heather and her husband, Michael Vincelette. She has four granddaughters Andrea, Emily, Cimone, and Madelin. She attributes much of her success at the college to the unwavering support and love of her family.