For Immediate Release—Friday, August 25, 2006


Mary E. McCrank      

Media Relations Officer

(585) 245-5516

New school year at SUNY Geneseo begins today with opening convocation and moving in day

GENESEO, N.Y.—A modern state-of-the-art science building, 11 days of activities and a traditional convocation will welcome new students at the State University of New York at Geneseo.

Approximately 5,342 students prepare to begin classes at the 135-year-old institution, which has been recognized by four national publications in the past month for being one of the most outstanding public liberal arts colleges in the country. New students will start moving into the residence halls at 8 a.m. today—Friday, Aug. 25.

President Christopher C. Dahl will address members of the college community during his Opening Convocation address to be delivered to faculty and staff at 3 p.m. today. Dahl and Beth McCoy, associate professor of English, will address Geneseo's first-year class at the New Student Convocation, at 7 p.m. Sunday, August 27, on the College Green. The title of McCoy's speech is "Doing the Work That You (Do Not) Want To Do."

Incoming class is academically accomplished

Geneseo continues to attract high school graduates who have achieved remarkable accomplishments. This year's first-year class of 1,073 registered students enters Geneseo with impressive academic credentials, according to Director of Admissions Kris Shay and Director of Institutional Research Catherine Renner. The mean combined SAT averages this year are 1292, an increase over last year's average of 1281, and the mean combined ACT average this year is 28, up from 27 last year, according to preliminary data. In addition, the mean high school average remains steady this year at 93. The most popular majors of the incoming class are biology, business and childhood education.

Integrated Science Center opens for classes in September

The college's Integrated Science Center will be open for the first day of classes on Monday, August 28. The $53 million project includes 102,000 square feet in the new building and renovations to the adjoining Greene Hall. The Center—which will house the departments of geology, biology, chemistry and physics—will affirm Geneseo's position as the leader in science and technology research. The facility will boast a rooftop astronomy deck and 2,700 square foot greenhouse adjacent to Newton Hall. With 16 teaching laboratories designed to accommodate specific courses of study, 30 additional labs are custom designed for research to be conducted in each field. The college broke ground on the project in November 2003. An official opening will be held Nov. 9-10.

Volunteerism instilled in new students during first weeks on campus

More than 170 first-year students will perform volunteer service during their second weekend away at college, said Celia Easton, associate dean of students and professor of English. The Geneseo 100 Volunteers program started last year and had an overwhelming response this year. The students will spend the morning of Labor Day—Monday, Sept. 4—helping people in need by doing yard cleanup, painting, trail clearing and serving senior citizens. This program helps new students meet their classmates while also promoting volunteerism as a way of life at Geneseo. The students will meet at 9 a.m. in the lobby of the College Union before heading out to volunteer.

Fifteen students named Presidential Scholars

The first group of Geneseo's Presidential Scholars will be inducted in a ceremony Sept. 11. Fifteen students entering their senior year were nominated by faculty members and reviewed by faculty and students before being recommended to Provost and Vice President of Academic Affairs Katherine Conway-Turner. The students must have a GPA of 3.6 or higher and be involved in the college and greater community, said Conway-Turner. The students will receive certificates and special Geneseo pins during the ceremony at the president's home.

Week of Welcome offers students variety of activities

The college will welcome the return of its students beginning today with 11 days of activities ranging from athletic activities to field trips to seminars. "WOW: Week of Welcome" will run from Friday, Aug. 25, through Monday, Sept. 4. The Department of College Union & Activities has planned numerous events and activities to welcome and inform new and returning students and to build community. Today's activities include a reception from 11:30 a.m.-1:30 p.m. at the president's home on Main Street, an all-campus picnic from 4:30-6 p.m. on Sturges Quad and a crafts program from 9-11 p.m. In addition, students, faculty and staff will discuss "Letters from Young Activists: Today's Rebels Speak Out," required reading for all first-year students, from 4:45-6:30 p.m. Sunday, Aug. 27, in locations throughout campus. More information on the reading program can be found at Other events throughout the week will include a giant water slide, trips to the New York State Fair and Six Flags Darien Lake and a service project for Habitat for Humanity from 2-5 p.m. Sunday, Sept. 3. A full list of activities can be found at

Geneseo lauded in four national publications in past month

Four national publications, including three well-known and highly respected national college guides, have again acknowledged the outstanding liberal arts education offered at Geneseo. The New York Times called Geneseo one of the nation's "hidden gems" that "is increasingly seen as a first choice for high achievers." The college made the list of 20 colleges and universities nationwide that "are alternatives to the usual suspects," or the "brand-name institutions." In the 2007 edition of "America's Best Colleges," published by U.S. News & World Report, Geneseo is ranked No. 14 out in the category "Best Universities – Master's" for the northern region. U.S. News takes into account both public and private colleges and universities in this category. Geneseo also appears at No. 2 among the "Top Public Universities – Master's" for the northern region. Geneseo also was profiled in the 2007 edition of The Princeton Review's Guide to "The Best 361 Colleges." The Review named Geneseo a Best Northeastern College. Geneseo also was ranked in the 2007 "Fiske Guide to Colleges."

2006 awards for excellence presented to faculty and staff at Opening Convocation

The following awards for excellence are to be presented to Geneseo faculty and staff at the president's annual opening convocation today:

Roy L. Doane of Wellsville, assistant vice president for facilities and planning—President's Award for Outstanding Professional Service; Amy Sheldon of Groveland, assistant professor of geological sciences—President's Award for Excellence in Academic Advising; Wendy Knapp Pogozelski of Geneseo, professor of chemistry—President's Award for Excellence in Research and Creativity; Isidro Bosch of Geneseo, associate professor of biology—Harter Faculty Mentoring Award; and Jacalyn Eddy of Nunda, lecturer of English—Joseph M. O'Brien Award for Excellence in Part-Time Teaching.