The Allegany County Industrial Development Agency (ACIDA) has executed a contract to build Crossroads Development, a multi-million-dollar project that will serve Allegany County colleges, businesses, and visitors along Interstate 86 at the Belmont exit.
Rochester-based Hemisphere Management LLC and Novat Corp. LLC signed a contract for development, construction, and operation of a nationally branded upscale hotel and conference center, full-service restaurant, and modern fueling station. The site consists of approximately 32 acres and is the location of a previously operated truck stop at the intersection of State Route 19 and County Route 20.
“Crossroads Development will add construction and permanent jobs along with substantial sales taxes and bed taxes as the project opens,” stated Board of Legislators Chair Curt Crandall.
The developer anticipates that construction will begin in 2018, at a cost of approximately $15 million, and will provide 50 permanent full-time and part-time jobs. Early designs call for a 90 room hotel, with 5,000 square feet in conference space, and a 3,500-square-foot restaurant. This summer, the ACIDA and developers will hold meetings for the community to discuss details during the design phase of the Crossroads Development.
“On behalf of my partner Tarpan Patel, President of Hemisphere Management LLC, he and I are looking forward to working with the Allegany County community in bringing the long-time dream into reality,” stated Novat Corp. LLC President Pepsy M. Kettavong.
“This project has been high on a wish list to advance economic development in Allegany County for several years and now is becoming a reality,” stated ACIDA President Mike Johnsen.
Three world‐class colleges and universities are a major resource for Allegany County, with Houghton College in the north, Alfred State and Alfred University in the south. ACIDA Executive Director Craig Clark said, “The Crossroads Development is important to all three colleges and businesses throughout the county to be competitive and assure economic growth.”
“The three colleges in the county, local businesses, and tourism are all in need of more facilities like this for accommodating visitors,” stated Alfred State President Dr. Skip Sullivan.
Alfred University President Mark Zupan said, “This is a great step forward for Allegany County. We have been pleased to partner with the ACIDA, Alfred State, Houghton College, and other organizations in our county in support of the endeavor.”
Houghton College President Shirley Mullen stated, “We are grateful to Craig Clark and his team for their hopeful, persistent, and patient pursuit of the most appropriate partner for developing the crossroads property. This is a great benefit to all the educational institutions of Allegany County. We look forward to the many ways this project will leverage further economic development in our county.”
"Local, state, and federal leaders have worked tirelessly to develop this site, and now those efforts are bearing fruit. New jobs, an increased tax base to help take pressure off local property taxpayers, and more opportunity and prosperity will result. It will provide accommodations to grow tourism so that visitors can experience our region's rugged, scenic beauty, outstanding small businesses, and rich history. It was a challenge to secure funds for the waterline, but it was an economic priority for me and I'm thrilled that we invested $400,000 in state grants to help make it happen. Sincere congratulations to the IDA, Allegany County legislators, and everyone who worked together, believed, and never gave up," said state Sen. Cathy Young.
The Crossroads Development project includes a new waterline under development by Allegany County supplied by water from the Town of Friendship. The waterline project is in the final design phase now, anticipated to be ready for construction bids in 2017, and installed in 2018. The waterline will make additional sites for development possible, since access to water is often needed to attract investment.
“The Allegany County IDA is extremely excited about the project and its impact on the county and the community for jobs and economic development,” stated Clark.
The State University Police Department at Alfred State is pleased to announce that it has hired Joseph R. Histed as its newest member.
Officer Histed is familiar with the Southern Tier, having grown up in Belfast and graduated from Belfast Central School in 2006. He attended Alfred State before moving on to SUNY Brockport, where he earned a bachelor’s degree with honors in history in 2010.
Histed continued his education at SUNY Brockport and received his master’s degree in recreational management two years later. Upon completion of his education, Histed accepted a full-time position at SUNY Brockport within the Athletics Department. When asked what he liked most about working at SUNY Brockport, he said, “I enjoyed working in the academic setting where I was able to interact with young adults.”
Histed began his law enforcement career with the Monroe County Sheriff’s Office in 2016, where he was employed as a road patrol deputy. After completing his academy at the Monroe County Public Safety Training Center, Histed successfully completed his field training program and was assigned to the Henrietta area where he worked until coming to University Police.
During his time with the Monroe County Sheriff’s Office, Histed received training in topics such as autism, child abuse, school violence prevention, patrol rifle, active shooter response, and RADAR-LIDAR.
Matt Heller, the chief of Police at the University Police Department, said, “Joe Histed is a great addition to the University Police and to Alfred State. He brings a unique combination of education, experience working in higher education, and law enforcement to Alfred. Those are traits that we very seldom see together in a new officer.”
In his short time at Alfred State, Histed has already demonstrated his ability to interact positively with students. When asked what he is looking forward to in his new position, Histed said, “I am looking forward to returning to the higher education setting where I will be able to develop strong relationships within the community I serve.”
Lt. Gov. Kathy Hochul called upon educators to “create that spark” that will ignite interest in STEM careers in her keynote address for the 2017 New York State STEM Summer Institute, hosted at Alfred State.
Hochul was among the numerous distinguished speakers and educators of kindergarten through higher education who gathered at the college recently to discuss and share best practices for increasing interest in science, technology, engineering, and math (STEM) careers among young men and women. The three-day conference featured presentations and workshops that focused on sparking interest in STEM through classroom projects, afterschool activities, and more.
In her remarks, Hochul noted the importance of getting young women interested in STEM careers, which, in New York State, she said pay about $30,000 more per year than the average salary. She told the educators present that it was “up to all of you in your various capacities to create that spark” of excitement about STEM careers.
“You are teaching and inspiring people to go into fields where I have employers begging for people to have these skills,” she said. “I chair the governor’s Regional Economic Development Councils. That puts me in contact with employers all over the entire State of New York every single day. They don’t complain about the taxes in New York, they don’t complain about the regulations, they don’t complain about Albany. What they complain about is not having workers with the skills they need to step into the jobs.”
Hochul also complimented the advanced manufacturing early college program that resulted from a partnership between Alfred State and Buffalo’s Burgard High School. The program trains students in skills such as automotive technology, welding, and machine tool technology. She concluded by reminding the educators that they are changing young people’s lives.
“The governor and myself want to thank you for that commitment,” she said. “Your legacy will endure in these kids because of something you did or the people you work with or the organization you’re with. You’ll inspire them to go into the field and have a better future than they would have if they had not been touched by someone in this room.”
Dr. Craig Clark, vice president for Economic Development at Alfred State, said, “The 2017 STEM Institute at Alfred State was the perfect place to hear Lt. Gov. Kathy Hochul and her passion for STEM education. This is the No. 1 topic across the United States and with economic developers in New York State.”
During the conference, Clark received the 2017 Margaret Ashida Outstanding STEM Leadership Award for being an avid and engaged supporter of STEM education and STEM learning in a multitude of ways.
Also receiving Margaret Ashida awards were Dr. Candice Foley, professor of chemistry at Suffolk County Community College (Higher Education STEM Leadership Award), Marc Chiffert, managing member of CHIFFERT Engineering PC (STEM Workforce Leadership Award), and Dr. Mark Vaughn, manager of technical talent pipelining for Corning Inc. and lead for the Technology Community Office of STEM (PK-20 STEM Leadership Award).
A new review of the best veterinary technology programs ranks Alfred State as the third best in the United States. The analysis is based on the likelihood of success for students who want to put their love of animals to work.
“We are extremely proud to be included in this listing of the best veterinary technology programs in the country,” said Dr. Phil Schroeder, chair of the Agriculture and Veterinary Technology Department at Alfred State. “The fact that we share the top three positions in this list with institutions such as Purdue University and the University of New Hampshire, is a testament to the quality of our program, as are our amazing alumni.”
TheBestColleges.org explained that they “looked at the most important factors for prospective students, mainly common predictors of future success” to determine the best colleges for becoming a veterinary technician. These factors included admissions rate, default rate, retention rate, and graduation rate. Students agree that the Alfred State program prepares them for a fulfilling career.
“The vet tech program was really comprehensive, and prepared me well for working in the field,” said 2015 graduate Megan George. “It was as challenging as it was rewarding, and it provided me with networking and support to start my career.”
Alfred State's veterinary technology program is fully accredited by the American Veterinary Medical Association. Licensed veterinary technicians are indispensable members of the veterinary medical team, capable of providing everything from life support and surgical assistance to physical therapy and nutritional management. The program is designed to provide students with extensive training in the theory and principles, reinforced with the hands-on technical, animal, and laboratory experience needed.
TheBestColleges.org also has advice about potential careers with a vet tech degree and predicted job growth from the US Bureau of Labor Statistics: “Veterinary technicians conduct clinical procedures on animals under the supervision of a veterinarian in private clinics, laboratories, animal hospitals, zoos, and other facilities. The demand for vet techs is expanding; the number of vet techs is projected to grow 19 percent between 2014 and 2024.”
Alfred State is cooking up changes to its culinary arts program and public dining options. The goals for the improvements are to better prepare Alfred State culinary arts students for the current food services industry, as well as improve the experience for patrons.
As a result, Alfred State will expand lunch fine dining to five days a week and will be open one night per month for unique themed events including both buffet and fine dining options.
According to Deb Burch, chair of the Culinary Arts Department, the new changes this fall will include:
Additionally, Burch said, students will be managing the restaurant and preparing the meals under the guidance of multiple faculty members. They will also have a greater opportunity to plan and execute a menu of their design, and will benefit from a progressive team teaching style, giving them the ability to develop and explore a variety of cooking techniques under the tutelage and expertise of chef instructors.
In addition to planning and preparing the meals, students will further benefit from hands-on training in areas related to “front-of-the-house” service, including ordering, presentation, appearance, and professionalism – all focused areas that aim to achieve expert levels of student proficiency.
“The Culinary Arts Department also hopes to be taking on special event caterings, which will teach our students how to accommodate customers and their requests,” Burch added. “The goal is to afford our students variety and expertise in all situations, making them invaluable to their employers.”
Dr. Skip Sullivan, president of Alfred State, said, “The new changes to our traditional fine dining are another example of how our college is constantly evolving and improving its programs’ curricula to meet the current demands of industry. Not only will culinary students benefit, but our patrons will as well, and because of this, we are very excited about the changes going forward.”
Dr. Kristin Poppo, provost at Alfred State, said attendance for the college’s traditional fine dining offering has decreased over the years, which is another reason for the changes.
“I am thrilled by the changes in the culinary arts program, which will maintain training in fine dining, while adding more contemporary trends such as farm to table and international cuisine,” Poppo said. “Closer collaboration between our farm and culinary program will truly benefit students in both programs.”
Jeffrey Stevens, interim dean of the School of Applied Technology, said, "Maintaining the highest quality of education for our students and excellent service to the public are the focus of these changes. I am pleased to see these enhancements to the dining venue, which will continue to offer our students training exceeding the industry’s expectations, while serving the public with new and unique dining experiences."
Alfred State also recently unveiled a newly renovated space for baked goods now called the Hank and Evelyn Turner Pastry Emporium in honor of a longtime supporter of the culinary arts programs. The facility includes a new refrigerated bakery case, as well as a new island cupboard with a granite countertop constructed by building trades: building construction students. The emporium will also be open during weekday lunch hours.
Efforts to help college students cope with stress, have a better focus in class, and be more productive, have earned Alfred State a bronze award in a national competition. NASPA, an association of student affairs administrators in higher education, gave the college this national honor in the category of student health, wellness, and counseling.
“We are pleased to honor Alfred State with this award,” stated Kevin Kruger, NASPA president. “The NASPA Excellence Awards were created to recognize student affairs practitioners who develop transformative, innovative, and data-driven programs. Congratulations and best wishes for the continued success of your program.”
Hollie Hall, senior director of Health and Wellness Services, said her team is committed to meeting the needs of students through a wellness lens.
“The Journey to Wellness Program is an integral piece to the arsenal of inclusive services we provide here at Alfred State,” Hall said. “Additionally, the three MindSpas are an example of the infusion of evidence-based practice and innovation. Winning the NASPA bronze award brings credibility to the Journey to Wellness Program, and I envision future awards as we do more assessment on the effectiveness of this program. Students are learning how to self-regulate emotions, all while experiencing the benefits of self-care.”
In an effort to meet the needs of the college community, Health and Wellness Services recognized the importance of providing students with the skills necessary to manage stress. That led to creation of the Journey to Wellness Program to encompass innovative services that focus on student health and well-being to eliminate stress and increase productivity.
The innovative program began in 2012 when the first MindSpa opened in T.A. Parish Hall. Usage numbers and student satisfaction surveys supported the addition of a second MindSpa in 2014, located on the Wellsville campus in the Pioneer Student Union.
Consistently, student satisfaction survey and usage numbers supported the need for a third MindSpa in 2016, known as the Oasis, which is located in the Student Leadership Center. The Oasis is the hub for Journey to Wellness Programming, and allows students to utilize the MindSpa’s complementary and alternative medicine modalities after normal business hours. A MindSpa is a relaxation room that includes complementary and alternative medicine (CAM) modalities such as aromatherapy, biofeedback training, guided meditation, and massage chairs.
The National Center for Complementary and Alternative Medicine (NCAAM) has defined (CAM) as being “a group of diverse medical and health care systems, practices, and products that are not presently considered to be a part of conventional medicine.” The response has proven that students are in favor of such services.
NASPA originally stood for National Association of Student Personnel Administrators. The association’s description changed to student affairs administrators in higher education, while the acronym has not changed. NASPA Excellence Awards recognize the contributions of members who are transforming higher education through outstanding programs, innovative services, and effective administration.