May. 15, 2013

Shaping Lives of Purpose: Student ambassadors named


Despite disability in her own family, Danely López '16 says her family does not talk about it. This summer, she will explore the taboo that the Dominican culture has had for centuries on public conversation about disability through a self-created and self-run project, "Why Mongolo? Exploring Disability Studies in a Spanish- Speaking Community."

"Being part of the Dominican culture myself, I have noticed that even in my family where disability is evident, there is a silence about it," she says. "I seek to discover ways in which I can help my community educate themselves more about the topic of disability from a cultural standpoint."

López was inspired to take on the project after taking a Disability in America class in her first semester and her participation Students Eliminating Abelism through Advocacy (SEAA). She is one of Geneseo's 2013 student ambassadors, who will undertake transformative projects in varied disciplines, thanks to generosity of ambassador donors, who make the $5,000 annual awards possible. The ambassadorships are led through the college's Center for Inquiry, Discovery and Leadership and represent the opportunities students have at Geneseo to challenge themselves, conduct research and complete self-led projects. Shaping Lives of Purpose: The Campaign for Geneseo, aims to strengthen such transformational learning opportunites for students.

They are:

  • Frank Vafier ’74 Ambassadors in Leadership (2 offered in 2013)
    Todd Christensen: Discovering Racial Equality through the Algebra Project
    Christopher Pike: Sustainable Not-for-Profit Management in El Sauce, Nicaragua
  •  James Houston ’80 Ambassador in Innovation
    Will Schaefer: Leveraging Differences at Nonprofits of Rochester

  • James N. Leary ’75 Ambassador in Leadership
    Michelle Walpole: Best Practices in Teaching English to Speakers of All Languages
  •  Community Advocates Ambassador in Community Engagement
    Chelsea Butkowski: Heard@Geneseo Publishing Initiative:  Exploring Local History through Oral Narratives
  •  Provost’s Ambassador in Diversity
    Danely López:  Why Mongolo? Exploring Disability Studies in Spanish Speaking Communities
  •  John A. ’87 and MaryGrace ’84 Gleason Ambassador in Student Affairs
    Nathan Wolf Kahn and Sean Benjamin Neill:  (Dis)orienting Livingston County

  • Edward Pettinella ’73 Ambassador in Business
    Jonathan Baek:  Personal Entrepreneurship in Photography

  •  Campus Auxiliary Services Ambassador in Entrepreneurship
    Madeline Smith:  Geneseo Eats Local
  • Special Ambassador in Intercultural Studies
    Gabrielle Kosoy: Tradition Expedition in Ukraine: an Exploration of my “Dual Soul

  • Gerard Gouvernet Ambassador in French Language and Culture
    Maria-Gratias Sinon:  “College Students’ Motive for Learning a Second Language”