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Campus News

Professor, Marine veteran speaks to Honors Program students

Posted Date: Tuesday, March 29, 2016 - 09:30

SUNY Distinguished Teaching Professor and longtime member of Alfred State’s Business Department Jim Grillo met March 24 with members of the college’s Honors Program to share some of his experiences in the Vietnam War.

Grillo, a sergeant in the US Marine Corps, served in Vietnam 1967-68 as a Recon Marine. Originally a machine gunner, he became team leader when the previous leader was killed.

Wounded three times, Grillo eventually returned to the United States and spent nine months recovering in a hospital. Asked by a student what it was that kept him going in his time in battle, a visibly moved Grillo replied, “You do it for your buddies. Your life is in their hands, and their lives are in your hands. Without 100 percent trust, you’re all in big trouble.”

When a recent survey of Vietnam War vets revealed that nearly 75 percent of them would enlist and “do it all again in a heartbeat,” Grillo was quick to include himself in that number. 2016 marks the 50th anniversary of US involvement in the Vietnam War. Every state plans ceremonies commemorating that event and honoring the 2.7 million men and women who served and remembering the more than 57,000 men and women who gave their lives in that war.

Kristen Williams, Brian Kelly, SUNY Distinguished Teaching Professor James Grillo, and Matthew PorterfieldFrom left to right are Kristen Williams, liberal arts and sciences: humanities, Hornell; Brian Kelly, information technology: network administration, Allegany; SUNY Distinguished Teaching Professor James Grillo; and Matthew Porterfield, electrical engineering technology, Hamburg.

AAS in medical sonography now offered

Posted Date: Tuesday, March 29, 2016 - 08:45

Prospective students may begin applying now for fall 2016 admission into Alfred State’s new two-year diagnostic medical sonography program.

This Associate in Applied Science major will prepare qualified students to become health care professionals who use high-frequency sound waves to produce anatomical images for diagnostic purposes. The program coordinates on-campus didactic and laboratory classes and clinical experiences at area hospitals, to which students are responsible for their own transportation.

Clinical education is assigned to provide experiences consistent with each student's level of achievement in different hospital and outpatient environments. Through clinical assignments, students have opportunities to work with the most modern and specialized equipment available, and knowledgeable staff with a wealth of experience in imaging.

Bridgett Mayorga, program director and assistant professor of Physical and Life Sciences, said, “Diagnostic medical sonography, or as it’s better known ‘ultrasound,’ is an ever-expanding career field that includes abdominal, obstetric, vascular, and cardiac imaging. We are very excited to be able to offer this opportunity at Alfred State.”

According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, employment of diagnostic medical sonographers and cardiovascular technologists and technicians, including vascular technologists, is projected to grow 24 percent from 2014 to 2024, much faster than the average for all occupations. Occupational opportunities include hospital sonography department staff technologist, sonography department management, and private physician offices.

Students within the program must be able to demonstrate technical standards and pass clinical competencies as described by the American Registry of Diagnostic Medical Sonography (ARDMS), the Joint Review Committee on Education in Diagnostic Medical Sonography (JRCDMS), and the Commission on Accreditation of Allied Health Education Programs (CAAHEP), recognized by the United States Department of Education as the national accreditation agency of programs for sonography.

Upon graduation, students are prepared to take the ARDMS SPI and Content Specialty Exams.

Dr. Skip Sullivan, president of Alfred State, said, “We are excited to add diagnostic medical sonography to our health-care related academic offerings, particularly given the projected job growth of this field in the coming years. I thank the faculty and staff who worked to bring this program to fruition.”

Dr. Kristin Poppo, provost, said Alfred State recognizes that careers in health care provide excellent opportunities locally, regionally and nationally.

“Diagnostic sonography, a SUNY-designated high-need area, further expands opportunities at Alfred State in the health professions,” Poppo said. “This program option will be of huge benefit to our students.”

University Police officers take class on fair and impartial policing

Posted Date: Tuesday, March 22, 2016 - 15:15

All police officers and campus public safety officers from Alfred State’s University Police Department recently attended an eight-hour class on fair and impartial policing in Geneseo.

The “Fair & Impartial Policing Perspective” training session reflects a new way of thinking about the issue of biased policing. The training was a result of an initiative set forth by the SUNY Police Commissioner’s Office and the SUNY Chiefs Association.

SUNY and its University Police Departments strive for excellence, thus it is appropriate to adopt this state-of-the-art training that addresses issues of bias. Numerous police agencies across the country are rapidly adopting this model.

The “Train the Trainer” course was led by Lt. Col. JoAnn D. Johnson from the Illinois State Police Division of Internal Investigation, and Anna Laszlo, managing partner/COO of Fair and Impartial Policing LLC. This is the latest effort to build trust and strengthen the relationship between the State University Police and the campus communities they serve.

In January of this year, a number of SUNY police officers attended the “Train the Trainer” session in Syracuse, including Officer Carla Fintak from SUNY Brockport, Lt. Scott Ewanow from SUNY Geneseo, and Officer Jeff Wilcox from Alfred State. These three officers brought the training back to their respective campuses and collaboratively trained the remaining staff at all three SUNY Police Departments.

According to the model’s website, www.fairimpartialpolicing.com, the training is “based on the science of bias, which tells us that biased policing is not, as some contend, due to widespread racism in policing. In fact, the science tells that even well-intentioned humans (and thus, officers) manifest biases that can impact their perceptions and behavior. These biases can manifest below consciousness” and the training addresses this.

Forensic science technology program now fully accredited

Posted Date: Tuesday, March 22, 2016 - 09:30

The forensic science technology program has recently obtained full accreditation status from the Forensic Science Education Programs Accreditation Commission (FEPAC), becoming one of only 20 FEPAC-accredited bachelor-level programs within the field nationwide.

Wayne Bensley, program director and associate professor in the Physical and Life Sciences Department, said the accreditation is a monumental achievement for the Bachelor of Science program.

“It has been a goal of those of us associated with the program since its inception in 2008,” Bensley said. “It affirms the belief that we have held all along regarding the high level of strength found in the curriculum, faculty and staff, facilities, and students associated with the forensic science technology program.”

The five-year accreditation was granted as a result of a yearlong process including a lengthy self-study, as well as recommendations put forth by an administrative team and an on-site team, both composed of forensic science academicians and practitioners. The final decision on accreditation was granted by a Board of Commissioners at the American Academy of Forensic Sciences meeting held in February in Las Vegas.

Among the numerous individuals who worked to ensure the accreditation are Bensley, Physical and Life Sciences Department Chair Mark Amman, retired SUNY Distinguished Teaching Professor John Buckwalter, Professor Dr. Jerry Fong, all of the Physical and Life Sciences faculty and staff, program graduates and current students, administrators, and outside benefactors such the Drug Enforcement Administration’s Northeast Regional Laboratory and its director, Thomas M. Blackwell.

Dr. Skip Sullivan, president of Alfred State, said, “Our college is very excited about the accreditation of our forensic science technology program. We are proud of the hard work and dedication of our faculty and staff who worked to make this happen. I would like to thank each of them for their contribution and congratulate them all on their success.”

Dr. Robert Curry, dean of the School of Arts and Sciences, said, “This is a significant accomplishment and a powerful validation of the program’s high quality. I commend our faculty, staff, and students for a recognition well-deserved.”

Amman said the accreditation was “the perfect storm, in the best of terms, of the many intentional actions to have this come to fruition.”

“There is the deeply dedicated faculty and expertise, a curriculum well seated in solid science and superior instrumentation, continued support by administration, state allocation in our building rehabilitation highlighting the program, and a wealth of student interest in the discipline,” Amman said. “We anticipate that this accreditation will not only serve to enhance the continued recruitment of top-notch students, but also serve as a model for other institutions.”

Students within the laboratory-based, on-campus forensic science technology program complete classwork focusing on three areas of physical evidence analysis: biological applications, chemical practicalities, and microscopic-based examinations. Occupational opportunities include law enforcement laboratories, government crime laboratories, and industrial laboratories employing chemical or biological technologists.

Accreditation from an outside panel of experts, Bensley said, allows the college to market the program as being equal to those found in colleges and universities that are much larger than Alfred State.

“We anticipate that the ‘stamp of approval’ will only help in the recruitment of exceptionally strong students to the program,” Bensley said, “and will also help graduates of the program find additional opportunities for employment and entrance into post-graduate programs.”

Alfred State names Nikkie Hockenberry chief diversity officer and seeks new coordinator of Intercultural Student Support

Posted Date: Monday, March 21, 2016 - 11:15

Nikkie HockenberryAlfred State President Dr. Skip Sullivan is pleased to name Nikkie Hockenberry to the new position of chief diversity officer (CDO). Hockenberry’s appointment will begin on April 1 to champion efforts related to diversity, equity, and inclusion on the college campus.

Hockenberry will serve as part of a statewide network of CDOs supporting the State University of New York’s diversity goals. Alfred State is also seeking candidates for a new coordinator of Intercultural Student Support to further expand initiatives promoting diversity and inclusion.

“Diversity on campus helps prepare students for future career success,” stated Sullivan. “I will be working closely with our chief diversity officer to ensure that we are making real progress on institutional objectives. I’ll also point out that the growing number of New York City students who choose Alfred State shows how successful we have been at fostering a welcoming environment for everyone seeking a career-focused education.”

Alfred State has many programs underway to help students from every background acclimate and flourish. The college is expanding the summer prep academy for first-year students’ success, a new women’s leadership living learning community is being launched, and there are new initiatives to enhance support for transgender students.

Hockenberry holds an associate degree in liberal arts and sciences: humanities from Alfred State, a bachelor’s in English secondary education from SUNY Fredonia, and a master’s in interdisciplinary studies with a concentration in women and gender studies from Empire State College. In May, she will complete her advanced graduate certificate in women and gender studies, also from Empire State. Her career at Alfred State spans 15 years in various roles within Student Affairs. Previously, she served as coordinator of Equity, Inclusion, and Title IX, and she will continue to oversee Title IX compliance.

“I have been impressed with Nikkie’s passion and dedication concerning diversity, inclusion, and social justice around the world and on our campus,” added Sullivan.

Webcam powered by Alfred State provides view of eagles hatching

Posted Date: Friday, March 18, 2016 - 15:45

Interview with WGRZ, WNY Students' Innovation Powers Eagle Cam.

female bald eagle and the newly hatched eagletBald eagle fans around the world are watching for baby eagles to hatch live via the Internet, thanks to a solar power system for video monitoring designed and installed by students from Alfred State’s Electrical Trades Department.

On March 18, the first of two eggs hatched in a nest on the grounds of the US National Arboretum in Washington, DC. In October, five students installed the solar power system to support a video camera monitoring system for a pair of eagles named “Mr. President” and “The First Lady.”

“I’m thrilled that our students at Alfred State have helped people around the world monitor the birds and to witness as a new eaglet emerges,” stated Jeff Stevens, assistant professor of Electrical Trades. “We’ve installed multiple photovoltaic systems at the Arboretum but all of the media attention to this webcam is unusual. It’s a tremendous asset to promote the American Eagle Foundation and for making people aware of Alfred State.”

Media organizations around the world have publicized the webcam at www.DCeaglecam.org and explained how Alfred State students installed a unique solar-powered trailer at the site to supply the energy for the public to view the nesting and hatching. Network television newscasts have also broadcast the webcam live to monitor progress inside the eagles’ nest.

Ethan Yanda, Wayland; Thomas Wzientek, West Seneca; Justin King, Uniondale; Oliver Jackson, Williamsville; and Mike Lee, BrooklynThe innovative solar power installation was handled by Alfred State electrical construction and maintenance electrician majors: Ethan Yanda, Wayland; Thomas Wzientek, West Seneca; Justin King, Uniondale; Oliver Jackson, Williamsville; and Mike Lee, Brooklyn.