Parent Newsletter: October 2017

From the Beautiful Valley: News for SUNY Geneseo Families

Fall Geneseo Arboretum

A Message from the Dean of Students

October is Sustainability Month at Geneseo. And as part of the celebration, the College has been holding  lectures, activities and programs to engage and inspire students to be sustainability leaders and agents of change.

To kick off the month of events, the campus community heard from the renowned author and environmental activist Bill McKibben. The Schumann Distinguished Scholar in Environmental Studies at Middlebury College, McKibben is also the founder of, an environmental advocacy group.

Our students are very much engaged in the efforts, and several student-led groups are hosting activities throughout the month. For instance, the Geneseo chapter of FORCES (Friends Of Recreation, Conservations, and Environmental Stewardship), have organized a camping trip to Letchworth State Park, where they will be removing invasive plant species. Students will also be involved in the Ephemeral Arts Festival, in which they will create and display art with materials found in the Roemer Arboretum.

Sustainability Month, however, is just part of Geneseo’s ongoing efforts—sustainability is central to who we are and what we do. It is a collective effort that taps the passion and enthusiasm of everyone at Geneseo—most notably, your student.

From the classroom, through education in disciplines ranging from physics and biology to English and history, to research in areas such as cancer, sleeping sickness and water quality. From co-curricular activities—including our GOLD sustainability leadership program—to office-led initiatives—such as the Office of Computing and Information Technology’s printing waste reduction efforts. And from building and renovation projects—most notably, our Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) certified facilities—to the infrastructure update project currently underway on campus.  

Explore Geneseo’s efforts with our new interactive storytelling map that showcases how our faculty, staff, students and alumni are leading sustainability initiatives on campus and throughout the world.

For more on what’s happening on campus as well as important upcoming events and deadlines, read below.

Lenny Sancilio
Dean of Students and Director of the Center for Community
(585) 245-5706

News and Accolades

Going for GOLD

Even though the semester is well underway, students can still take advantage of the Geneseo Opportunities for Leadership Development (GOLD) initiative. The program was designed to help students build and add to their portfolios of skills and knowledge at any point during the academic year. This approach is different from most college leadership programs, which tend to have a selection or election admissions process.

Students taking advantage of GOLD  can begin applying lessons learned right away—in the classroom, in their co-curricular and social activities—while preparing for their careers and graduate work.

Upcoming sessions include developing listening skills, honing team-building and motivation strengths. Career-related topics include writing strong cover letters and advanced interviewing skills. For more, see the GOLD schedule.

Questions? Visit the program website, email Tom Matthews, associate director of leadership and service, or call (585) 245-5857.

FERPA Basics

Occasionally parents and families request access to their son or daughter’s record. The Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA) is a U.S. federal law that  protects the privacy of student education records. In most cases, this law prevents the College from releasing information about students’ educational records without their authorization.

While many colleges and universities offer students an opportunity to approve the release of information to guardians and parents, Geneseo’s philosophy and preference is for students to directly share this information with those supporting their education as a means to encourage responsibility. We treat your student as an adult, and therefore, expect them to share information with you. We do not have blanket waiver forms.

Questions? More information on FERPA can be found here.

Enrollment Opens for Graduate Programs

Did you know that SUNY Geneseo offers master’s degree programs in education and accounting? It’s not too late to apply for admission.

The M.S. in Accounting from our AACSB International-accredited School of Business provides the knowledge and skills needed for success in today’s accounting profession and satisfies New York State academic requirements for CPA licensure.

In addition, students may expect:

  • Enhanced preparation for a career in accounting: Graduates will arrive in the workplace with a superior level of skills and knowledge. This frequently translates into more rapid advancement and enhanced career prospects.
  • Career planning flexibility: CPA licensure or the ability to become licensed enhances career mobility. Most states require 150 credits of coursework for CPA licensure. Combined with a 120-credit undergraduate degree in accounting, our M.S. in Accounting will foster career advancement.
  • Shortened experience requirement: Professionals earning our M.S. in Accounting need only one year of work to meet the experience requirement for CPA licensure.
  • Performance on the CPA exam: Experience shows that professionals who earn an M.S. in Accounting achieve significantly enhanced pass rates on the CPA licensure exam. Over the last four years, more than 66 percent of our students have passed the CPA exam on their first attempt. And, many of our students complete part or all of the CPA exam during their time in the program.

Master’s level programs from our NCATE-accredited Ella Cline Shear School of Education include:

Master of Science in Childhood Multicultural Education (Grades 1-6)

This program adds to teachers’ knowledge of teaching and learning in grades 1-6 by focusing on the multicultural dimensions of education in a diverse society. The M.S. in Childhood Multicultural Education program is ideal for many teachers of grades 1-6 who wish to refine their general teaching skills rather than specialize in a particular area at the master’s degree level. Candidates who complete this program are eligible for New York State professional certification in Childhood Education (Grades 1-6).

Master of Science in Adolescence Education (Grades 7-12)

Our M.S. in Adolescence Education program aims to deepen and broaden teachers’ understanding of adolescent students, related pedagogical options and the content area of the teacher’s preparation.  Candidates who complete this program are eligible for New York state professional certification in Adolescence Education (Grades 7-12). Four areas of academic specialization in grades 7-12 are available: English, French, Social Studies, and Spanish.

Reading and Literacy B-12 Program

The Reading and Literacy program is clinically-based and requires candidates to work directly with students on developing reading proficiencies. As part of their capstone experience in reading, candidates will take two semesters of an intensive practicum experience in reading. Successful completion of the program yields two certifications in Reading and Literacy (Birth-Grade 6 and Grades 5-12).

TESOL Sequence

This is a five-course, 15 credit sequence to support teachers who want to teach English to speakers of other languages (TESOL), geared at the elementary and secondary levels. The TESOL coursework is designed to give Geneseo graduate students a competitive edge—as needs for TESOL are constantly in demand, candidates with this sequence under their belt are heavily sought after when applying for teaching jobs. The five courses are necessary to complete the Individual Pathway for an Additional Classroom Teaching Certificate. In addition to the successful completion of these five courses, in order to apply for the Individual Pathway for an Additional Classroom Teaching Certificate, candidates must meet other requirements.

We offer a limited number of merit-based scholarships and full-time graduate assistantships each year to well-qualified degree candidates. For more details and an application, visit Graduate Admissions.

The spring 2018 application deadline for our graduate programs in education is November 1, 2017. The fall 2018 application deadline for our M.S. in Accounting is June 1.

Questions? For more on our graduate programs, application requirements, graduate housing, etc., email Michael George, graduate enrollment coordinator, or call (585) 245-5040.

Study Abroad Conference

The SUNY Geneseo Study Abroad Office recently hosted its first re-entry conference, ROC Your Global Future: Lessons from Abroad Rochester Area Study Abroad Returnee. The event offered students from around the region, including more than 40 SUNY Geneseo students, an opportunity to reflect and to learn about study abroad.

Attendees learned about opportunities to go abroad again, how to effectively reflect on their experience, how study abroad fits within their career, and how to approach the world with a global citizenship perspective. Geneseo students were introduced to the wealth of resources available at the College, including those associated with the Department of Career Development, which can help guide students on how to include their study abroad experience on resumes’, in interviews and through cover letters. Students also learned about post-graduate scholarships and fellowships, such as the Fulbright and Marshall awards, and the advisement resources available through Michael Mills, director of fellowships and scholarships.

Was the conference helpful? In a survey, more than 85% of the participants responded with a resounding “yes,” citing international career networking opportunities and hearing from other students as key highlights.

Coming up in November, students can find out even more about study abroad opportunities and experiences during International Education Week (IEW). Scheduled for November 13-17, we will feature speakers, info sessions, photo contests, social and cultural events and networking opportunities.

Questions? Visit the study abroad webpage, email or call (585) 245-5546.

It’s Time to Re-apply for Financial Aid

Although it feels like the academic year just began, you can now reapply for financial aid for the 2018-2019 school year. The Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) for 2018-19 became available on Oct. 1. The Office of Financial Aid at SUNY Geneseo strongly recommends that families complete the new FAFSA by Feb. 1, 2018. Some aid programs are awarded on a first-come, first-serve basis, so applying by the deadline is key.

The IRS Data Retrieval Tool makes completing the FAFSA easier than ever. After completing the FAFSA, don’t forget to link over to the New York State TAP application. The TAP link can be found on the confirmation page of the FAFSA.

Questions? Check out The Parent’s Guide to Filling Out the FAFSA.

Gearing Up to Offer Hurricane, Disaster Relief

Plans are underway to send groups of students, staff, faculty and community members to some of the hardest hit disaster areas. Coordinated through the College’s LivingstonCares program, volunteers can participate in weeklong service trips to Brooklyn, Florida, Houston and Puerto Rico. Trips are scheduled for January 7-13, March 11-17 and May 13-19. Information on the trips will be posted by the end of October on the LivingstonCares website. Offered on a first-come, first-served basis, students and other interested parties are urged to sign up as soon as they can.  A one-credit service learning option will be available for all trips.

Questions? Visit the program website or email Tom Matthews, associate director of leadership and service, or call (585) 245-5857.

Advanced Registration Dates for Spring 2018

  • Spring 2018 advanced registration opens Monday, Oct. 30, for graduate students. End date: Nov. 17
  • Advanced registration for seniors who have applied for graduation begins Oct. 30 and ends Oct. 31
  • Other seniors: Oct. 31–Nov. 1
  • Juniors can register beginning Nov. 2–3
  • Sophomores: Nov. 6-7
  • First-year students: Nov. 9-10
  • Open registration: Nov. 13-17
  • Open registration: Jan. 2-10
  • Transfer students: Jan. 12 until drop/add period starts
  • Open registration: Jan. 13 until drop/add period starts
  • Drop/add period: Jan. 16-22

Students should check Knightweb on Oct. 25 for specific dates and times.

Visiting Geneseo

If you're planning a trip to Geneseo, check the visit campus section on our website or the Village of Geneseo website for information on how to get around on campus, what to see, where to stay and where to eat while you're here.

Important Dates

  • Oct. 9-13 National Transfer Student Week
  • Oct. 17: Graduate School Fair
  • Oct. 30: Advance registration opens
  • Nov. 22–24: Thanksgiving Break
  • Dec. 11: Last day of classes
  • Dec. 13–19: Final exams
  • Feb. 16–18: Siblings Weekend

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