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College Council April 12, 2019


Tower Room, Doty Hall

April 12, 2019

PRESENT:      Iris Banister

                        Jill Yonkers Emmons

Gidget Hopf

Christian Valentino

                        Robert Wayland-Smith, Chair

                        Corey Wilkinson, Student Association                                                                     

STAFF:           Denise Battles, President

Robert A. Bonfiglio, Vice President for Student and Campus Life

                        Gail Glover, Chief Communications and Marketing Officer

                        Kim Harvey, Interim Vice President for Enrollment Management

                        Justin Johnston, Assistant Vice President for College Advancement

                        Wendi Kinney, Senior Associate to the President                 

                        Christie Reed, Secretary to the President

                        robbie routenberg, Chief Diversity Officer

                        Stacey Roberston, Provost

                        Stephen Storck, Interim Vice President for Finance and Administration     

GUESTS:        Pema Sherpa, student

                        Lytton Smith, Director of Center for Integrative Learning

                        Adam Hansen, Student Association President-elect


Chair Wayland-Smith called the meeting to order at 1:03 p.m.

The minutes of the February 1, 2019 meeting were approved.

Chair Wayland-Smith acknowledged the passing of long-serving Council member Mary Luckern. He and Provost Robertson attended her services and learned a great deal about her life and the many contributions she made to the community and State.

Council observed a moment of silence in memory of Luckern

Battles shared that Luckern’s estate has notified us that she has remembered the College with a bequest.


Dr. Lytton Smith, Director of the Center for Integrative Learning

Smith provided an overview of what the Center for Integrative Learning is.

A few highlights of upcoming work:

  • Geneseo Green Quotient, a 1-credit course
  • Living-Learning Communities Faculty Fellows Program
  • Bringing Theory to Practice: City of Asylum Grant

Engage Geneseo is an opportunity to connect students to opportunities in the community.

CIL is building upon already existing successful programs and efforts, being a Carnegie Classification recipient for Community Engagement since 2015 as one example.

A foundation for the CIL is making transformative connections to the community before graduating.

Three learning outcomes:

Integrative Inquiry

Application and Transfer


Pema Sherpa ’19, Eddie Lee ’76 First Generation Ambassador

Addressing Healthcare Challenges in Nepal

Sherpa traveled to Nepal to study healthcare inequalities and to look at how healthcare delivery in underdeveloped countries compares to that of developed nations. Sherpa provided an overview of the varied opportunities the ambassadorship offered her in Nepal.


Wilkinson introduced the incoming student association president, Adam Hansen.

The Student Association is busy with many year-end activities. Four representatives attended the SUNY Student Assembly conference. It was a referendum year and Wilkinson is pleased to announce that the referendum passed. The newly elected board will take office next month. There is one new position and one vacant position.

The Council thanked outgoing SA President Corey Wilkinson for his service.


The Council thanked outgoing Senate Presiding Officer McPherson for his service and acknowledged that, in addition to his term ending, McPherson is retiring from the College.

McPherson reported Senate business is on pace with prior years. Current discussions continue around intellectual property rights. There are companies that will purchase coursework materials from students without credit or financial compensation to the faculty who have created the materials. A proposal was put to the Senate for a vote, which has been tabled, pending an updated proposal that has been reviewed by our SUNY attorney.


Mental Health and Higher Education


Interactive Discussion Topic

Dr. Bonfiglio provided an overview on the status of student mental health on college campuses. Student mental health has changed considerably over the past decade and is one of the principal concerns we have as an institution.


Budget Update

Battles provided a budget update now that NY State has reached a timely budget agreement and SUNY has provided an early assessment of impacts.

Strategic Planning

Battles updated the Council on key progress elements related to the Strategic Plan.

Personnel Transitions and Recruitment

Battles shared the recent hires of Julie Buehler as the VP Finance and Administration and Wendi Kinney as Senior Associate to the President. Battles also updated on the status of the ongoing and upcoming searches for the VP of Enrollment Management and VP for College Advancement.

Critical Maintenance Planning

Battles shared that over 70% of the Geneseo campus is in the “high risk” category for deferred maintenance based on facility age. Advocacy and planning continue for major repair and renovation of Sturges Hall, Fraser Hall, Milne Library, and College Circle.


Battles highlighted a few of the many faculty, staff, and student achievements, awards, and recognitions received during the spring semester.


Hopf commended the College for the student presentations that occur at each College Council meeting. These students and their work are impressive and in some cases of international importance.

Chair Wayland-Smith inquired about the work of the Expanded Budget Priorities Committee. 


Chair Wayland-Smith thanked the President, VP Bonfiglio and guest presenters.

The Chair offered recognition of Council member Heineman who is completing his tenure with the College Council after 21 years of service.

Reminder that commencement is May 18.

The meeting adjourned at 3:31p.m.

Denise A. Battles                                                                                Wendi Kinney

President                                                                                             Recording Secretary