September 28, 2016


Volume 11, Issue 4–September 28, 2016



A Fast Week

It’s been a pretty non-stop past week for me.  On Monday I was in the hospital for a routine test, where the goop that you have to drink in preparation is much worse than the test itself.  Those who have had this will instantly know what I’m talking about, and the rest of you will find out when you turn 50 or 60.  The folks at Canton-Potsdam Hospital provided top-notch care.  The doctor was great and not surprisingly, the nurses that assisted me were all graduate of SUNY Canton, so I knew I was in good hands.  It’s really great to know that both major hospitals in the county (CPH and Claxton-Hepburn in Ogdensburg) are of such high quality—I’ve had nothing but good experiences with both.

Tuesday through Thursday consisted of non-stop meetings on one thing or another, and on Friday, I flew to Las Vegas for a quick visit to see my parents who have a condo there.  It was great to see them.  Back in August, they celebrated their 63rd anniversary, which is quite an accomplishment.  My mom has some serious health issues, but my father is giving her lots of loving care and I’m hoping for the best.  I left at noon (Pacific Time) on Monday, flying to Detroit and then Ottawa, and arriving at 10 PM (Eastern Time).  The airport in Ottawa Ontario is the nearest major airport to Canton, and it always seems weird going into Canada to travel to another point in the United States.  Between customs and the drive from Ottawa back to Canton, it was midnight when I finally got home.

This week, it’s lots of meetings again on Tuesday through Thursday, and then on Friday I’m off again, this time driving to the Association of Council Members & College Trustees (ACT) meeting in Fairport NY, where one of our students will win a major award (see below).  I’ll be back on Sunday.


Constitution Day

Last Friday, SUNY Canton celebrated Constitution Day with a full slate of very cool activities.  The morning included a Constitution Trivia Contest (complete with red, white, and blue cupcakes) led by Hannah Ralston and Rachel Santose at the Southworth Library, featuring a visit from George and Martha Washington (Nico Auguste and Molly Mott)!


There was also a voter registration drive there which registered an additional 70 students to those who registered at the drive the previous Wednesday at the student activities fair.  Volunteers at the drive included Rosemary Phillips, Emily Hamilton-Honey, Nikki Zeitzmann, Marela Fiacco, Hannah Ralston, Patrick LaPierre, Stephanie Petkovsek, Christina Lesyk, Rachel Santose, Jill Martin, Jennifer Waite, Barat Wolfe, Karen Spellacy and Diane Muehl, plus a few additional student volunteers.  Rock the Vote Frisbees were donated by our UUP Chapter’s David Hartle and Lynn Snow.

I wasn’t able to attend the Trivia Contest since I was at Clarkson University attending a North Country Regional Economic Development Council meeting during the morning, but I rushed back to host a lunch for NY Supreme Court Judge Vito Caruso.  It was really interesting to meet with Judge Caruso in a relaxed atmosphere and talk about how similar our childhoods were and about some of the more unusual events in our lives.

Judge Caruso gave his formal presentation at 1:00 PM on the subject “The Constitution—Its Origins and Its Future”.  The talk was well attended by an appreciative audience of legal and political dignitaries, two chapters of the Daughters of the American Revolution, and SUNY Canton students, faculty, and staff.  It was a very engaging talk, giving the history of the development of the Constitution, as well as some interesting comparisons between the Federal Constitution and the New York State Constitution, which actually predates it.

At the end of the speech, after entertaining several questions from the audience, Judge Caruso was presented with a proclamation from State Senator Patty Ritchie’s representative, Jim Reagan. 


I also gave Judge Caruso a certificate of appreciation from SUNY Canton.


The speech was followed by a reception on the Roselle Plaza, at the end of which Judge Caruso was presented with a proclamation from Assemblywoman Addie Russell.


I also had the pleasure of having dinner at the Alumni House with Judge Caruso, Steve Button (from the County Attorneys Office, who had arranged to bring the judge to campus), and several of the judge’s associates and their spouses.

It takes a veritable army to put together an event of this magnitude, so here is a listing of the folks involved, and I hope I’m not leaving anyone out:  School of Business and Liberal Arts faculty members Stephanie Petkovsek (chair), William Jones, Alexander Lesyk, Christina Lesyk, Rosemary Phillips and Dean Jondavid DeLong; VP for Advancement Anne Sibley and her staff; Executive Director for University Relations Lenore VanderZee; Assistant to the President Michaela Young; Special Events Coordinator DianeMarie Collins; Library Staff Rachel Santose and Hannah Ralston; Priscilla Leggette from Student Affairs; Student Government Association President Nikki Zeitzmann; Director of Dining Services Susan Law, Catering and Concessions Manager Sean Conklin, and Executive Chef Steven Maiocco; and Senior Media Relations Manager Greg Kie and Publications Coordinator Matt Mulkin.  Financial support for the event was provided by the offices of the Provost (Doug Scheidt), VP for Student Life (Courtney Bish), VP for Administration (Shawn Miller), VP for Advancement (Anne Sibley), Student Government, and my office.  Thanks to everyone involved!



Congratulations to…


Francesco Polumbo, a junior majoring in Sports Management and member of SUNY Canton’s Baseball team, who has been chosen to receive the State University of New York Association of Council Members and College Trustees annual award for Excellence and Student Initiative Scholarship.  The ACT Award focuses on a student’s academic achievements and service to their campus and/or community.  The award includes a $1,000 scholarship for Palumbo and an additional $250 donation in the student’s name to the charity of his choice. Palumbo said his charitable donation will be made to Canton High School’s Golden Bear Booster Club.  The award will be presented on Saturday, October 1, 2016 at The WoodCliff Hotel in Rochester, NY.  You can read more about Francesco here.



The Early Childhood Education program, who co-hosted the annual Early Childhood Fall Conference together with the St. Lawrence Child Care Council on our campus on Saturday, September 17.  The two have collaborated and hosted this event for 10 years, which is attended by early care and education providers from our county and beyond, and offer a variety of workshops and presenters each year.  SUNY Canton student volunteers included:  Alexandria McIntosh, Alexis Ezidore, Molly Atkinson, Morgan Morse, Savanna-Lin Boadway and Katie Miller. Also in attendance were 6 SUNY Canton EC Alumni, who are all working in the field of ECE in child care centers, Head Start programs, and self-employed family child care home providers.



Articles Worth Considering

Each issue of the BLAB, I’ll try to include a link to an article that I’ve read recently that makes an interesting point that I think is worth considering.  If you have an opinion about the article, positive or negative, I’d love to hear it.

Here’s this week’s article, titled “Economists Offer Unconventional Wisdom on Student-Loan ‘Crisis’ ”, about two books that say the stories in the media on the ‘crisis’ in student loans are misfocused.  You can read it here.




Last Time’s Trivia Contest 

Last time’s contest dealt with word that begin with the letter “L”.  Our fastest five responders with all five correct were Jennifer Church, followed by Farren Lobdell, Paula Tufo, Debbie Flack, and Nancy Rowledge.  Just come to my office on the 6th floor of MacArthur Hall to get your prizes—a duplicate CD from the vast Szafran repository.  Others getting all five right included Greg Kie, Amanda Rowley, Kim Woodard, Erwin Zahler III, Julie Cruickshank, Alexander Lesyk, Michaela Young, Lenore VanderZee, Douglas Scheidt, Megan Warren, and Carmela Young. Here are the correct answers:


  1. Pop singer whose hits include “Poker Face”, “Paparazzi”, and “Born this Way”. Lady Gaga.
  2. Popular TV sitcom star born in Jamestown, NY. Other characters on her first show included her husband Ricky Ricardo, and neighbors Fred and Ethel Mertz.  Lucille Ball.
  3. Disney animated movie with main characters Simba, Mufasa, Pumbaa, and Timon. Hakuna Matata! The Lion King.
  4. Adirondacks location where two Winter Olympics were held. Lake Placid.
  5. Song you sing to young children as they go to sleep.  Lullaby.



This Time’s Trivia Challenge

Continuing our trek through the alphabet, this issue’s challenge is about words that begin with the letter “M”. Everyone with all five correct wins a duplicate CD from the vast Szafran repository, or whatever else I’ve dredged up as a prize. No looking up the answers now!  SEND ALL ENTRIES BY EMAIL TO since if you put them as a response on the BLOG, everyone will be able to see them.

  1. Leader of the Three Stooges.
  2. In the nursery rhyme, she became famous for sitting on a tuffet and being scared of a spider.
  3. She played Hannah Montana and “popularized” twerking.
  4. He said “I will return” when evacuated from the Philippines during World War II; also the name of the administration building on this campus.
  5. Famous painting of a woman with a demure smile that hangs in the Louvre.



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