Posts Tagged ‘Molly Mott’

SUNY Canton Holds Inaugural Women in Esports Open House, Dec. 6

Thursday, December 5th, 2019

A women-only event at the college’s Esports Arena will promote competitive video gaming.

SUNY Canton eSports Logo

SUNY Canton will be holding a Women in eSports, or WeSports, Open House from 4 to 6 p.m. Friday, Dec. 6, in the SUNY Canton Esports Arena in Nevaldine Hall South 133. The event is free and is exclusively offered to females of all ages. 

“We hope to encourage women to take part in esports by showcasing our incredible facilities,” said Courtney B. Bish, vice president for student affairs and dean of students. “The demographics for competitive gaming show a large discrepancy in participation between men and women. We are offering an opportunity for both serious women gamers and beginners to come and enjoy themselves in a welcoming atmosphere.” 

Emily Oeser plays Overwatch in the eSports Arena.

SUNY Canton offers coed competition in eight games through the Eastern College Athletic Conference (ECAC), with about a dozen female students currently participating in the program. The majority of those students will be attending the event to assist beginners, offer advice and play alongside guests. 

Game Design and Development major Emily A. Oeser, the captain of the “Overwatch” team, has helped the college grow female participation in the program. She helped lead the team to an ECAC Championship title in 2018 and a second-place finish in 2019. Oeser also orchestrated the first recorded collegiate all-women’s Overwatch match against Stephens College in Columbia, Mo. 

“It’s fantastic the college is providing time in our arena exclusively for women at an event hosted by women,” she said. “We’re looking forward to introducing others to the games we love and our state-of-the-art arena.”

Oeser will be joined by other female captains, including Kasey L. Palmer who plays “League of Legends”, and Madison E. Cragle who plays “Super Smash Bros. Ultimate.” Both students are enrolled in the college’s Veterinary Science Technology programs. 

A student plays in the new eSports Arena

Guests will be able to play on one of the 25 dedicated Alienware Area 51 computers, on PlayStation Pro, Xbox 1X, or Nintendo Switch consoles. Funding for the program and its equipment was provided through a SUNY Performance Investment Fund grant designed to increase opportunities for online students. 

“We’re also sending a special invitation to our female online students who may want to join us virtually,” said Molly A. Mott, associate provost and dean of academic support services. “We hope to reach an even wider group of students in support of our inclusivity mission, and we’d like to hold more WeSports events in the future. We’re looking forward to seeing community members, college staff and students, and high school and middle school students as well.” 

Parking is available adjacent to Nevaldine Hall or in Lot 1. For more information, contact the Office of Public Relations at (315) 386-7526.

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 digital design, engineering technology, health, management and public service. Faculty members are noted for their professional real-world experience in addition to outstanding academic credentials. As SUNY’s leader in online education, SUNY Canton OnLine offers hundreds of flexible and convenient courses as well as 18 online degree programs. The college placed first in 14 categories in a SUNY-Wide Student Opinion Survey, most notably in career services, tutoring, library resources, and classroom facilities. The college’s 15 traditional athletic teams compete at the NCAA Division III level as part of the North Atlantic Conference. SUNY Canton also offers varsity esports and cheerleading.

SUNY Canton Receives Prestigious Award for Online Student Engagement Program

Thursday, November 7th, 2019

SUNY Canton has been recognized for improving the online student experience.

The SUNY Council of Chief Student Affairs Officers (CCSAO) selected SUNY Canton to receive the 2019 Outstanding Student Affairs award for a new program that seeks to engage online students in all aspects of campus life.

Bish and Thayer hold their Student Affairs award

Over the past two years, the college has expanded the availability of college resources and activities virtually. Online students can now watch live-stream videos of guest speakers and events; compete in varsity esports; attend career, study abroad and professional clothing fairs; present research alongside their on-campus peers; and work with an online career counselor. They are also able to participate in real-time with their professors and classmates during lectures delivered through the college’s flex class model.

SUNY Canton Associate Provost and Dean of Academic Support Services Molly A. Mott said the project was developed in collaboration with Vice President of Student Affairs and Dean of Students Courtney B. Bish.

“Our goal was to elevate the entire experience of our online students and to explore ways to create community and connectedness in a virtual environment,” said Mott.

In addition to supporting new opportunities to engage in campus life, a SUNY Performance Improvement Fund grant allowed the college to appoint an online student engagement coordinator, Richard J. Thayer. It also assisted the campus in acquiring the technology to automate business processes, provide flex class lectures and improve accessibility on Blackboard, the college’s online learning system.

“Whatever we do on campus, our first question is, what does this mean to our students at a distance, and can it provide value for them?” Bish said. “Through this program, each department has been mobilized to think in terms of our fully online students.”

Bish and Thayer accepted the CCSAO award at the organization’s fall conference in Rochester.

“As one of only a few colleges in the nation working on a project of this scale, it’s gratifying to be recognized by our peers with this prestigious award,” Bish said. “We hope our SUNY counterparts can use this as a model to improve student success.”

Mott and Bish have also presented the online engagement program at national educational meetings, including the Ruffalo Noel Levitz Conference and the 35th annual Distance Teaching and Learning Conference.

Their work will also published in “Rethinking Student Affairs for Online Learners,” a book about best practices for educational professionals, and the journal  “Innovations in Higher Education Teaching and Learning.”

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 digital design, engineering technology, health, management and public service. Faculty members are noted for their professional real-world experience in addition to outstanding academic credentials. As SUNY’s leader in online education, SUNY Canton OnLine offers hundreds of flexible and convenient courses as well as 18 online degree programs. The college placed first in 14 categories in a SUNY-Wide Student Opinion Survey, most notably in career services, tutoring, library resources, and classroom facilities. The college’s 15 traditional athletic teams compete at the NCAA Division III level as part of the North Atlantic Conference. SUNY Canton also offers varsity esports and cheerleading.

SUNY Canton Joins Extreme Networks Esports & Education Summit, Oct. 3

Sunday, September 29th, 2019

An upcoming Syracuse-based seminar promotes success with school esports programs.

SUNY Canton officials will be among the experts to present at Extreme Network’s Esports and Education Summit held from 9 to 4 p.m. Thursday, Oct. 3 at the Marriott Syracuse Downtown Hotel. 

The day-long seminar is designed for educators who want to learn about the numerous benefits an esports program can bring to a college or high school setting. The event is free, but registration is required by signing up at Extreme’s website

SUNY Canton esports athletes participate in Extreme Connect 2019 conference.

SUNY Canton unveiled its esports program in Spring 2018 with 14 students playing on three teams. As of Fall 2019, it attracted more than 100 students playing in eight games. The program inspired the creation of a tournament style esports arena, with high-speed low-latency internet connections provided by Extreme Networks.

“We’re committed to using emerging technologies to deliver next-generation education and entertainment experiences to engage our student body,” said Kyle Brown, assistant vice president and chief Information officer. “We were the first SUNY college to offer varsity esports in 2018 and have built one of the largest, dedicated digital esports arenas in the northeast. Extreme has been a great partner in our esports journey.” 

The college also partnered with Alienware to secure high-end Area 51 gaming machines to equip the space. It has since joined with Mountain Dew Game Fuel for an additional partnership. Representatives from both companies will be attending the seminar alongside management from the Eastern College Athletic Association (ECAC), which is the pre-eminent governing body in college athletics offering intercollegiate videogame competition.  

“SUNY Canton has established itself as a leader in esports,” said Randy B. Sieminski, director of athletics and seminar presenter. “We wouldn’t be where we are today without the full support of our administration and the SUNY Canton community coupled with the buy in from our professional partners.” 

According to a recent global esports survey, 71% of schools are considering or might consider adding an esports program in the future. These programs are network-intensive, requiring high performance gaming workstations, audio communication among teammates, video capture and connection to broadcast sites such as Twitch and YouTube. In a competition setting, every millisecond counts so networks must deliver high performance connections to ensure the best, most competitive game environment.  

“Esports is gaining mainstream popularity, and schools are increasingly searching for and investing in digital programs that will attract and retain the next generation of students,” said Bob Nilsson, Extreme Networks director of vertical solutions marketing. “This creates an explosive market with an entirely new ecosystem of producers, sponsors, suppliers, players, audiences, and venues.”

In addition to highlighting the technology driving esports, discussions will include getting an esports program off of the ground; how esports enhances educational options; blending on-campus and online student life; and the overall benefits of a program in an academic setting. Much of the funding used to launch the program was provided by a SUNY Performance Investment Fund Grant. 

“Esports supports and naturally connects with so many of our academic majors such as Game Design and Development, Cybersecurity, Graphic and Multimedia Design, Technological Communications and many others, including our engineering and STEM offerings,” said Molly A. Mott, SUNY Canton associate provost and dean of academic support services. “It’s also been shown that engaged students are more successful with higher retention and graduation rates. Esports helps us improve on those goals in addition to offering opportunities for our large percentage of online students to participate in a collegiate athletic program.”

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 digital design, engineering technology, health, management and public service. Faculty members are noted for their professional real-world experience in addition to outstanding academic credentials. As SUNY’s leader in online education, SUNY Canton OnLine offers hundreds of flexible and convenient courses as well as 18 online degree programs. The college placed first in 14 categories in a SUNY-Wide Student Opinion Survey, most notably in career services, tutoring, library resources, and classroom facilities. The college’s 15 traditional athletic teams compete at the NCAA Division III level as part of the North Atlantic Conference. SUNY Canton also offers varsity esports and cheerleading. 

Corning Community College Partners with SUNY Canton for Game Design

Wednesday, June 5th, 2019

SUNY Corning Community College and SUNY Canton have implemented a “1+3” program in Game Design.

Students who complete the first year of the program at SUNY CCC and meet the appropriate academic requirements will be accepted into the Game Design and Development bachelor’s degree program at SUNY Canton.

“SUNY CCC is committed to helping students realize their professional goals,” said SUNY CCC Provost L. Dean Fisher, Ph.D. “Partnerships including the 1+3 program in Game Design with SUNY Canton pave a guided and smooth path for students who come to us with a vision in mind for the future. It also strengthens our suite of academic options.”

Corning and Canton logos

Students transferring under this agreement into SUNY Canton will be provided with a projected outline of their individual requirements for the bachelor’s degree. This effort will help provide students with academic advisement and career planning throughout their program of study.

“Partnering with SUNY CCC benefits both colleges tremendously,” said Associate Provost and Dean of Academic Support Services Molly A. Mott, Ph.D. “Joint programmatic offerings fit well within our mission and match the State University of New York’s laddering initiatives. Students can start at one college and seamlessly continue at another with a clear career goal in mind.”

SUNY Canton Game Design and Development major and eSports athlete Emily A. Oeser of Canajoharie in the college’s Digital Studio and Game Lab.

New students will be required to enroll in designated courses identified for the first year of the Game Design curriculum. During the following three years students can begin taking Computer Logic, Fundamentals of Game Design, and Intro to Programming. SUNY Canton’s program is overseen by Assistant Professor Ryan S. Hewer, the owner and lead developer for Little Red Dog Games.

SUNY Canton also has a thriving varsity esports program, which attracts numerous Game Design and Development students. Gamers can tryout to play for one of the college’s six teams, which include Blizzard’s “Overwatch,” Riot Games’ “League of Legends,” Epic Games’ “Fortnite,” among other popular titles.

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 digital design, engineering technology, health, management and public service. Faculty members are noted for their professional real-world experience in addition to outstanding academic credentials. As SUNY’s leader in online education, SUNY Canton OnLine offers hundreds of flexible and convenient courses as well as 18 online degree programs. The college placed first in 14 categories in a SUNY-Wide Student Opinion Survey, most notably in career services, tutoring, library resources, and classroom facilities. The college’s 15 traditional athletic teams compete at the NCAA Division III level as part of the North Atlantic Conference. SUNY Canton also offers varsity esports and cheerleading. 

SUNY Canton Adds Full Time Esports Coordinator

Friday, February 22nd, 2019

SUNY Canton has hired a full-time esports coordinator to help continue its extraordinary growth in competitive video games. 

The college’s Athletic Director Randy B. Sieminski announced Charles Murray III will lead the Kangaroos esports program on a full-time basis. Head Coach Robert J. Snow will also be continuing to add leadership in his part-time role. 

Charles Murray sits in SUNY Canton's eSports Arena

“Our esports program continues to grow and expand remarkably fast,” said Sieminski. “Our biggest challenge has been keeping up with the incredible popularity of the program. We now have nearly 50 esports competitors, and we’re discussing adding at least one more team this spring. We’re excited to have someone with Charles’ coaching experience and teaching background join us so SUNY Canton can continue to be a national leader in collegiate gaming.”

Murray comes to SUNY Canton from the Ellenville Central School District where he served as an esports coach at Ulster BOCES and taught in the district’s Media Center. He also taught global studies for a year in the New Paltz Central School District. He is a grandmaster ranked “Overwatch” player and now oversees the college’s team. 

Charles Murray looks on as one of his players games.

“It’s a thrill to be joining such an accomplished, successful program,” said Murray. “SUNY Canton’s entire executive leadership team, particularly President Zvi Szafran, has demonstrated such dedication and support for our gamers. Coach Rob Snow and others have made SUNY Canton’s teams top competitors. I look forward to building on our successes.”

Murray earned both his bachelor’s and master’s degrees from SUNY Potsdam. 

This fall, SUNY Canton esports captured Eastern College Athletic Conference (ECAC) championships in both “Overwatch” and “FIFA.” The program also features teams competing in “League of Legends,” “Fortnite” and “Hearthstone.” Most recently, the college added Nintendo’s “Super Smash Bros. Ultimate” to its lineup of ECAC games. 

The funding for Murray’s full-time position comes from a SUNY Performance Investment Fund Grant obtained by the school’s Associate Provost and Dean of Academic Support Services Molly A. Mott.

“Esports supports and naturally connects with so many of our academic majors such as Game Design and Development, Cybersecurity, Graphic and Multimedia Design, Technological Communications and many others, including our engineering and STEM offerings,” said Mott. “It’s also been shown that engaged students are more successful with higher retention and graduation rates. Esports helps us improve on those goals in addition to offering opportunities for our large percentage of online students to participate in college athletics.”

SUNY Canton esports has been extensively featured in regional and national news media, including ESPN, the Washington Post, the Syracuse Post-Standard, the Watertown Daily Times, WWNY-TV in Watertown and television stations in Buffalo, Syracuse and Albany. 

“SUNY Canton’s students have been a powerful driving force moving the program forward,” added Murray. “Our skilled and talented competitors strive to compete and win. I can’t wait for even more success and championship titles. We will continue to recruit top students from around the nation.” 

Murray now oversees the college’s new Esports Arena, which has 25 high-end Alienware computers, Xbox One X units, Sony PlayStation Pro consoles and brand-new Nintendo Switches. 

High-speed low-latency networking for the space is provided by Extreme Networks, the college’s partner in competitive gaming. 

“Esports provides our students with nearly all the benefits of traditional athletics,” said Sieminski. “It gives our competitors opportunities to learn leadership, sportsmanship, teamwork, social responsibilities and so much more. These are things that will make them more well-rounded and desirable for prospective employers after graduation.”

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 digital design, engineering technology, health, management and public service. Faculty members are noted for their professional real-world experience in addition to outstanding academic credentials. As SUNY’s leader in online education, SUNY Canton OnLine offers hundreds of flexible and convenient courses as well as 16 online degree programs. The college placed first in 14 categories in a SUNY-Wide Student Opinion Survey, most notably in career services, tutoring, library resources, and classroom facilities. The college’s 15 athletic teams compete at the NCAA Division III level as part of the North Atlantic Conference. 

Flex Classes Help SUNY Canton Meet the Needs of Modern Students

Thursday, January 31st, 2019

Missing an in-class lecture won’t put a student behind in SUNY Canton’s Flex Classes.

The integration of the new course options allows students to physically attend, participate virtually or complete their work entirely online.

Professor Ryan Hewer speaks to his class.

SUNY Canton Assistant Professor Ryan S. Hewer teaches a Flex Class from one of the college’s two video-enabled classrooms. Hewer is wearing a video camera tracking device and a headset microphone to record and broadcast his lecture while he is presenting.

“We are making our courses accessible to more students,” said Molly A. Mott, associate provost and dean of academic support services. “We began with one course about a year ago and have since expanded to eight different unique options taught by a handful of our forward-thinking faculty members.”

Lectures are live streamed to participants and are simultaneously recorded and posted to SUNY Canton OnLine, where students can access it at any time – or as many times – as they like. It allows online students the option of attending a class in person, while traditional on-campus or commuter students can decide whichever way they’d like to participate.

A student holds a cat while using her laptop.

Jade Kenyon, a SUNY Canton Funeral Services Administration Student, takes Flex Classes online from her apartment in Canton. She is pictured with her cat, Po.

They are also ideal for working professionals who are looking to advance their degree who want to participate in a traditional college-style learning environment.

“Flex classes change the model of delivery from one in which a rigid time schedule is ‘pushed’ on a student to one in which the student ‘pulls’ the class when the student needs it,” said Professor Charles R. Fenner, who teaches two Management classes in the new format.

SUNY Canton has two video-enabled streaming classrooms on campus. Students engage with their faculty members and one another in real time during the streaming class section on large monitors.

Umesh Kumar teaches a Flex Class

Pictured is SUNY Canton Associate Professor Umesh Kumar, who teaches Finance, presenting a Flex Class. Kumar is wearing a video camera tracking device and a headset microphone to record and broadcast his lecture as he is teaching it.

The college also offers two courses in its online Agricultural Management program, several Homeland Security courses and a Construction Management as Flex Classes.

SUNY Canton’s Flex Classes are funded through a Performance Improvement Fund grant from SUNY. A portion of that funding is also used to increase engagement with the college’s substantial online student population by offering expanded college resources.

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 digital design, engineering technology, health, management and public service. Faculty members are noted for their professional real-world experience in addition to outstanding academic credentials. As SUNY’s leader in online education, SUNY Canton OnLine offers hundreds of flexible and convenient courses as well as 16 online degree programs. The college placed first in 14 categories in a SUNY-Wide Student Opinion Survey, most notably in career services, tutoring, library resources, and classroom facilities. The college’s 15 athletic teams compete at the NCAA Division III level as part of the North Atlantic Conference.

SUNY Canton Requests Donations for Online Clothing Fair

Monday, January 14th, 2019

SUNY Canton is accepting gently used professional attire from the community for their annual clothing fair, which, for the second year in a row, will be held online.“The website allows all students—online and on campus—and members of the local community who are in need of business wear to browse clothing at their convenience via the internet,” said Associate Provost and Dean of Academic Support Services Molly A. Mott. “We had an overwhelmingly positive response to the new online format last year, and we expect to fulfill even more orders this year.”

A student packages up professional clothing to send to an online student.

Community members may drop off donations at 49 Main Street in Canton during the following days and times or at the SUNY Canton Ready Center (Monday-Friday from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m.):

  • Feb. 9 from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m.
  • Feb. 23 from 11 a.m. 3 p.m.
  • March 9 from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m.

Organizers request that donors use the public parking lot to the right of Hodskin Street and utilize the back entrance. The following items are being requested:

  • Men’s and women’s professional suits
  • Collared shirts
  • Accessories
  • Blouses
  • Skirts
  • Dresses
  • Dress shoes; no sneakers or athletic shoes
  • Professional scrubs
  • Dress pants
  • Blazers and dress jackets
  • Sweaters
  • Ties
  • Scarves
  • Dress socks, nylons and tights in original packaging

The website, sunycantonclothingfair.org, will be available exclusively to SUNY Canton students from April 10-19. Community members will be able to browse clothing from April 20-28. All items are free of charge.

The fair is sponsored by a SUNY Investment Fund grant, which helps support the needs of online learners. For more information, contact the SUNY Canton Career Services Office at (315) 386-7119.

SUNY Canton Sets Summer Session Enrollment Record for Fifth Consecutive Year

Tuesday, June 26th, 2018

SUNY Canton has set a new enrollment record for its popular online Summer Session five years in a row.

Registration has increased every year since 2013 and reached an all-time high of 2,003 enrollments this summer, which surpasses the previous record of 1,966 enrollments set in June 2017. The college’s Winterterm session has also seen dramatic growth during the same time period.

Summer Session

The upward trend is chiefly due to SUNY Canton’s renowned reputation for excellence in distance learning, in addition to the variety of subjects offered.

“Our investment in the development of online courses is paying off in the form of increased enrollments for our Summer and Winterterm sessions,” said Molly A. Mott, SUNY Canton associate provost and dean of academic support services and instructional technologies. “We are able to give students the opportunity to earn credit in the area of their choice between traditional spring and fall semesters.”

Summer Session, which began May 30 and runs until Aug. 15, is open to anyone. More than 130 courses were available in a range of topics, including art, business, economics, law, history and physics. Those looking to explore more unique subjects could enroll in the popular “Comic Books as Literature” course, which examines the similarity between superhero comic books and graphic novels to other forms of fiction.

Because credits earned during Summer Session are easily transferrable, a large contingent of students from private universities and other SUNY schools consistently utilize the course offerings year after year.

“It’s a very convenient way for them to catch up, graduate early or satisfy prerequisites for their major,” Mott added.

Another advantage of Summer Session is that it allows New York state students to meet the 30-credit annual requirement to qualify for the Excelsior Scholarship Program.

 

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.

SUNY Canton Seeks Donations for Online Clothing Fair

Tuesday, March 13th, 2018

SUNY Canton is accepting gently used professional attire for their annual clothing fair, which, for the the first time, will be held online.

“We are expanding the fair to service our entire student body–both on-campus and online–and members of the local community via the internet,” said Associate Provost and Dean of Academic Support Services, Molly A. Mott. “We are also providing student volunteers with real-world skills and retail experience by allowing them to run an online storefront.”

Student perusing professional clothing.

Community members may drop off donations at 49 Main Street in Canton during the following days and times:

  • March 19 and 26 from 10 a.m. to noon
  • March 22 and 29 from 4:30 p.m. to 6:30 p.m.
  • March 24 and 31 from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m.

Organizers request that donors use the parking lot to the right of Hodskin Street and utilize the back entrance. The following items are being requested:

  • Men’s and women’s professional suits
  • Collared shirts
  • Blouses
  • Skirts
  • Dresses
  • Dress shoes; no sneakers or athletic shoes
  • Scrubs
  • Dress pants
  • Blazers and dress jackets
  • Sweaters
  • Ties
  • Scarves
  • Dress socks, nylons and tights in original packaging

The website, sunycantonclothingfair.org, will be available exclusively to SUNY Canton students from April 16-21. Community members will be able to browse clothing from April 23-28. All items are free of charge.

For more information, contact the SUNY Canton Career Services Office at (315) 386-7119.

 

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.

SUNY Canton Creates ‘Flex Classes’ for Traditional and Online Students

Friday, February 16th, 2018

SUNY Canton is developing new course options that adapt to the needs of modern learners.

Until last semester, courses have been offered in two formats: through traditional on-campus classes; or by participating in online lectures and discussion boards through SUNY Canton OnLine. Last semester, the college began offering Flex Classes, which allows a student to attend a lecture one day and participate online the next.

Umesh Kumar teaches a Flex Class

Pictured is SUNY Canton Associate Professor Umesh Kumar, who teaches Finance, presenting a Flex Class. Kumar is wearing a video camera tracking device and a headset microphone to record and broadcast his lecture as he is teaching it.

“Flex Classes help promote student retention and completion rates,” said Associate Provost and Dean of Academic Support Services, Molly A. Mott “They remove barriers to education and fit into the busy and complicated lives of our students, especially those who are continuing their education. We see this as the future of higher education.”

The class is broadcast live during and the video is integrated with the college’s online learning software. Students participating from off of campus can ask questions as part of the class, and all students can watch the online recorded lecture.

Marela M. Fiacco, an instructor who oversees the college’s Healthcare Management program, volunteered to be the first faculty member to pilot the program for her Intro to Health Services Management course. She taught in a special classroom equipped with digital video cameras that follow her as she presents the course material.

“I told my face-to-face students that attendance is flexible,” Fiacco said. “This was especially important for our non-traditional and commuter students who have families and career obligations.”

Out of the 30 students who were enrolled, about nine opted to come to the twice-weekly class.

The instructor assigned group assignments that paired students participating from both on and off of campus.

Healthcare Management recently became the most popular major at the college, with more than 200 students enrolled in the fall 2017 semester. The majority of those students are working professionals who are seeking to advance their career by getting a bachelor’s degree.

SUNY Canton is expanding its Flex Classes through a Performance Improvement Fund grant from SUNY. A portion of that funding is also used to increase engagement with the college’s substantial online student population by offering expanded college resources. “We want to establish a better connection with our online students,” Fiacco said.

Two Flex Classes are currently in session during the spring 2018 semester and the college plans to continue research into, and development of, its newest educational delivery method. Students have been enthusiastic about the new mode of course delivery. “It’s a neat experience and I look forward to the future of the class and more like it,” said Michael B. Smithers, a Heathcare Management Student from Heuvelton.

 

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.