A group of eight Alfred State senior building trades: building construction students will be spending the fall 2015 semester performing service work for communities in need as part of the college’s Semester in the South program.
Accompanied by Building Trades Associate Professor Norm Ellis, the students departed from Alfred Friday for Biloxi, MS, where they will spend six weeks working with Habitat for Humanity on building a new home. The following six weeks will be spent in New Orleans, working for St. Anna’s Episcopal Church on repurposing a mansion built in 1846 into a school and arts center for the Treme neighborhood.
Taking part in the Semester in the South this year are Brock Delgato, of Clarence; Kyle Parish, of Buffalo; James Friedeborn, of Ithaca; Jake Baran, of Clarence; Brian Mitchell, of Derby; Kevin Rogers, of Frewsburg; Kayla Miller, of Bronx; and Cody Marvin, of Bath.
This is the sixth year Alfred State students have journeyed to the southern states to apply their knowledge, gain valuable hands-on learning, experience a new culture, and make a difference in struggling communities. The students are expected to return to Alfred Nov. 21.
According to Ellis, the students will be performing mainly carpentry-related tasks while in Biloxi, though in New Orleans, they will be looking to do masonry, roofing, electrical, and plumbing work.
“The program has been a phenomenal success,” he said. “It’s the perfect place to teach. When you’re in the classroom, sometimes you don’t get the chance to reinforce and do the things we’re talking about, so if we’re going out there and building a whole house, we’re pretty much covering everything we’re learning, and also helping out communities in need in the process.”
Rogers said he decided to participate in the Semester in the South program because, “It’s a once-in-a-lifetime experience and it also looks great on a resume.”
Miller said, “I wanted to get out of Alfred and do something to help out a community in need.”
Alfred State officially welcomed more than 1,300 freshmen to campus Thursday morning during a New Student Convocation led by President Dr. Skip Sullivan at the Orvis Activities Center.
This year’s incoming class consists of 1,350 students from 60 of New York’s 62 counties and 18 additional states, plus 30 international students from seven countries. Of these new students, 102 have been identified as Alfred State Distinguished Scholars and 194 additional students have been offered other scholarships in recognition of their outstanding academic achievements, exceptional vocational skills, and extraordinary talents outside of the classroom. A number of students also bring with them previous work experience and successful college course work.
Speaking first to students, Sullivan encouraged them to get involved on campus through clubs, organizations, and civic engagement and leadership opportunities. He also shared some of the exciting upcoming events taking place at Alfred State during the fall semester.
“Get ready to work hard in your classes, but have some fun,” Sullivan said, “and best to you for the most memorable experience of your life.”
SUNY Distinguished Teaching Professor and Faculty Senate Chair Jim Grillo provided some advice to help students succeed at Alfred State. He told them to seek help when they need it, not to cut corners or procrastinate, to take responsibility for their own actions, be confident, step outside their comfort zone, and balance academic and social opportunities.
“The good news is you aren’t going on your journey alone,” Grillo said. “We will be there helping and encouraging you at every stage. You will have some of the best faculty in the State University of New York helping you to succeed. These professors, as well as an outstanding professional staff, are here for you, to teach you the concepts that will serve you well in your future career.”
Pat Fogarty, College Council chair, told students, “There is more that you can do here than I could ever think of mentioning, but please, please get involved. My message is very simple: Join. Be doers. Go outside of yourself. Push the envelope. And then, you will be what Alfred State is all about: Pioneers.”
Greg Sammons, vice president for Student Affairs, then introduced students to Alfred State’s “Principles of Community” and Student Senate President Katherine Holmok, a business administration major from Prattsville, led students, faculty, and staff in reciting the college oath.
After Sullivan’s concluding remarks, students, faculty, and staff headed to Pioneer Stadium to create a human Alfred State logo for a photo session, which was followed by food, music, and activities outdoors nearby the stadium. Watch the time-lapse video.
The Hinkle Memorial Library at Alfred State will celebrate its 50th anniversary this September.
From 9-11 a.m. Sept. 12, as part of Homecoming/Family Weekend, the library will host an informal reception, during which time staff will be present to answer questions about the Hinkle Memorial Library Historical Exhibit in the gallery and to reminisce about the library and campus over the past 50 years. A complimentary continental breakfast will also be provided during this time.
The exhibit, which will run from Sept. 1 to Oct. 2, will include paintings of past Alfred State presidents, and historical photos of the college campus, the original library located on the Alfred University campus, the village of Alfred, and the Hinkle Library.
“We’re hoping that alumni who are back on campus for the Homecoming activities will stop in and see us,” said Alfred State Director of Libraries David Haggstrom. “It will be really cool if there are some who took part in the book brigade 50 years ago.”
With the growth of the State University of New York system in the late 1960s and 1970s, the Alfred State campus and library grew, as well. On Nov. 15, 1965, as part of the “book brigade,” students lined up at 8 a.m. in the old library, took an armful of books, carried them half a mile across the village of Alfred to the basement of the new library, stacked them in perfect shelf order, then went back for another load of books. With the students’ help, instead of taking weeks, transporting the library’s entire 22,000-volume collection to its current location took only four hours.
In 1970, the library was dedicated in memory of Walter C. Hinkle, college president from 1961-1964. Hinkle was instrumental in increasing the library appropriations and helping to build the library’s collections.
Since its dedication, the library has renovated the main floor and made several additions, including areas for small group or quiet study, the largest open computer lab on campus, an electronic classroom for library instruction and other college trainings, and a new main entrance to the building. The ground-floor renovation to house Technology Services was also completed, and the Marketing and Communications Department has since relocated to the library.
The tagline for the Hinkle Library’s 50th anniversary is “50—50—50: 50 Years—50 Donors—50 Dollars.” Funds raised through this effort will be used to update the display equipment and furniture in the gallery exhibit space. For information on how you can donate to the library, please visit www.alfredstate.edu/make-a-gift or call 607-587-4313.
Plenty of fun and exciting activities and events await Alfred State alumni, students, faculty, staff, and their families Sept. 10-13 during Homecoming/Family Weekend.
“The weekend is all about bringing friends together to share stories and reminisce, as well as creating new memories, remembering the past, and celebrating the future,” said Colleen Argentieri, director of Alumni Relations and co-chair of the Homecoming/Family Weekend Committee. “It’s going to be a terrific weekend and we are expecting another record attendance.”
Last year’s Homecoming/Family Weekend was a big success, as several events drew record-high attendances and sunny skies persisted throughout the weekend. This year’s event will include a larger-than-ever car show and the 50th anniversary celebration of the Hinkle Memorial Library. Saturday’s football matchup against Husson University will be the first Homecoming/Family Weekend game for new head coach Jarod Dodson.
“We’re hoping for good weather, good food, a great time, and a win by the Pioneers,” said Spencer Peavey, senior director of Student Engagement and co-chair of the Homecoming/Family Weekend Committee.
The festivities begin at 4 p.m. Thursday, Sept. 10 at The Terrace, during the Blue and Gold Dinner, a students-only themed dinner in which students are encouraged to show up wearing traditional school colors. ACES will sponsor the event and hand out gifts to students. Those who wear school colors will be placed in a special drawing for an additional prize.
Also on Thursday is the annual dodgeball game between students and faculty and staff members, which will take place at 8 p.m. in the Orvis Activities Center gymnasium.
The rest of the schedule is as follows:
Friday, Sept. 11
Saturday, Sept. 12
Sunday, Sept. 13
Dr. Richard Kellogg, professor emeritus of psychology at Alfred State, is the author of a new book titled “Barry Baskerville Traps a Thief.” The book, intended for young readers between the ages of six and 10, features color illustrations by noted Hawaiian artist Gary Kato.
The hero of the adventure is a precocious youngster named Barry Baskerville, who aspires to become a famous detective like his role model, Sherlock Holmes. Accordingly, Barry wears a deerstalker hat, examines clues with a magnifying glass, and loves to play the violin. He continually amazes both his teachers and classmates with his amazing powers of observation and deduction.
“Barry Baskerville Traps a Thief” introduces children to the legend of Sherlock Holmes and also shows them how to improve their problem-solving skills. The book is published by Airship 27 of Fort Collins, CO, and is available at the Amazon website.
Dr. Kellogg is the author of four previous books about Sherlock Holmes, as well as the popular series of books for children featuring boy detective Barry Baskerville. He enjoys introducing young readers to the magical world of Holmes and his loyal companion, Dr. John Watson.
In his fall 2015 Opening Remarks speech on Monday, Alfred State President Dr. Skip Sullivan focused on the subject of heroes.
The president began by talking to faculty and staff about superheroes they may have admired as a child, such as Batman, Superman, and Wonder Woman. He then showed a 3-D video featuring several Alfred State employees talking about who their favorite superhero was, and who their heroes are now.
“Our heroes change during our lifetime,” Sullivan said in the video. “The hero of your youth is probably not the hero of your adult life. Our perspectives change, but certainly most of us have our heroes, whether we admit it or not.”
Heroes, Sullivan said, can range from family members to teachers to coaches to members of the military to athletes, actors, counselors, and more.
“You are probably someone’s hero, whether you like it or not, or whether you know it or not,” he said. “You are actually modeling the behavior of a hero in someone’s eyes.”
The president urged faculty and staff to be aware of model hero characteristics, to provide encouragement and assistance, and to make themselves available for helping others. He also said they should think about the impact they will have on the next generation of heroes – the students.
“Alfred State has some awesome heroes,” the president concluded. “Ladies and gentlemen, enjoy your day, enjoy your semester, enjoy your year. You are the heroes of this college.”
Sullivan also provided an update on Alfred State, mentioning the Middle States Commission on Higher Education reaffirming accreditation of the college; new programs, such as criminal justice and radiologic technology; programs in development; faculty, student, and student-athlete accomplishments; more intramurals being offered; record-setting career fairs; and a number of capital projects taking place.