32% of incoming class is from racially and ethnically diverse backgrounds.
501 new students live on campus.
64% of the new students are from Onondaga County.
115 new students are from out-of-state.
Incoming class has 17 international students.
Onondaga’s Campus Safety and Security Department went through changes in both its operation and appearance. Three officers were dedicated to its new C.O.P.E. Unit, which stands for Community Oriented Policing and Education. Their job is to promote community partnerships, develop educational crime prevention programs, and enhance the quality of life on campus.
Campus Peace Officers also got a new look in February, replacing their light blue shirts with navy blue. Officers had worn light blue since the department was started in 2007, but when they needed to be replaced the color and style had become considerably more expensive and hard to find.
The Department of Campus Safety and Security has 16 armed, sworn Peace Officers who now wear new navy blue shirts and pants.
Onondaga celebrated its 50th commencement ceremony in May. More than 1,300 students were eligible to receive their diplomas inside the SRC Arena and Events Center. Onondaga Interim President Margaret M. “Meg” O’Connell presided over the ceremony.
Graduating student Garrett Sisson was the keynote speaker. Sisson was a Humanities major, a member of Phi Theta Kappa honor society, winner of a SUNY Chancellor’s Award for Student Excellence, and a two-year member of the men’s basketball team. Sisson was voted team captain the second year. Sisson utilized Onondaga’s “2+2” agreement with St. John Fisher College and transferred there. Sisson is majoring in Communications with a specialization in Public Relations at St. John Fisher.
Graduating student Sheralyn Wellman sang the national anthem and the alma mater. Wellman was a music major who sang regularly at campus events. Student Benjamin Shearer played the national anthem and the alma mater on the piano. During the academic year Shearer served as the student representative on the College’s Board of Trustees.
Dr. Lois Easterday was commencement Grand Marshal. Dr. Easterday taught Sociology at Onondaga since 1977. She served students with integrity, wisdom, and unwavering dedication to excellence in teaching and learning. Dr. Easterday was one of 24 Onondaga employees who retired upon conclusion of the academic year.
Honorary associate’s degrees were awarded to three distinct individuals who have exhibited professional excellence, meritorious and outstanding service, and whose accomplishments serve as examples of the SUNY system’s diverse student body: Dr. Helen Etherington, John D. Marsellus, and Dr. Cornelius B. Murphy Jr.
"Knowing I was saved from death made me realize I have a purpose here.
Sheralyn Wellman lives to sing. In May when she received her degree in Music, Wellman also sang the National Anthem and the Alma Mater at Onondaga’s Commencement ceremony. This special day was one that almost never happened for her.
In 2007, when she was 13, Wellman was swimming with three friends in Lake Ontario. The water was extremely rough. An 8-foot high wave hit the entire group and they needed to be rescued. One of her friends didn’t survive. “Knowing I was saved from death made me realize I have a purpose here. It’s definitely shaped my life.”
Wellman’s voice could be heard regularly on the Onondaga campus, whether she was singing in the halls outside the music rooms in the Gordon Student Center or at one of many events at which she performed. Besides Commencement, Wellman sang at two Phi Theta Kappa ceremonies, the New Student Convocation, and the Honors Convocation where she was also named the top student in the Music major.
While working two jobs and maintaining a full-time course load, the home-schooled Syracuse native was one of only six Onondaga students to be honored with a SUNY Chancellors Award for Student Excellence. “Homeschooling taught me how to be self-disciplined, and that is one of the most important qualities that carried through in my college career.”
Onondaga’s Information Technology department completed the planning and design phases for two major projects, both of which are campus-wide and involve upgrades in all buildings.
The wireless network will be completely replaced. The new system will have more than 300 access points throughout campus, addressing coverage gaps and improving performance in high density areas.
IT will replace the core network components in each building, and components that provide connectivity back to the data center will be upgraded. The changes will provide improved performance on the network, enable full redundancy on critical equipment and increase the level of business continuity in the event of an outage.
Both projects will provide greater network reliability and performance. The new systems will also enable Onondaga to take advantage of technology that requires higher speed and address continuous growth of mobile devices for both employees and students. The goal is for capital improvement projects to be complete in time for the fall 2014 semester. The total cost is approximately $900,000 and is funded equally by Onondaga County and New York State.
PHOTO CAPTION: Front row (left to right)- Sophia Marku – Reading, Stephanie Putman – Reading, Cindy Arcuri RN, MSN – Nursing, Carolyn Bice – Communications, Denise Valdes, English. Second row – Buffy Quinn – Meteorology, Dr. Glenda Gross – Sociology, Oksana Korol – Biology, Jessica Best – English, Patricia Owens – Mathematics, David Furney – Mathematics, Third row- David Rudari – Music, Kristen Costello – Business Administration, Woody Everett – Electrical Technology, Heather Liggett – Mathematics.
Onondaga’s outstanding level of commitment to men and women who served our country continued during the 2012-13 academic year. In March, Onondaga announced veterans honorably discharged in New York State whose legal residence is out-of-state would pay the in-state tuition rate to attend Onondaga.
As part of the Post-9/11 GI Bill, the Department of Veterans Affairs would pay the out-of-state tuition rate. In August of 2011 the law changed and the VA no longer covered the additional charges. “The recent policy of granting the in-state tuition rate to non-resident veterans discharged in New York State has made it much more affordable for these veterans to attend Onondaga Community College while using their GI Bill benefits,” said Keith Stevenson, Coordinator in Onondaga’s Office of Veterans’ Affairs. “With the implementation of this policy, veterans in this situation no longer face this obstacle as they pursue their educational goals at Onondaga.”
Onondaga once again hosted the Say Yes to Education Summer Success Academy in July and August. The program was geared toward local high school graduates who would be attending college in the fall and needed to hone their academic skills.
Thirty-five students graduated from the Summer Success Academy and continued on to college in the fall. Twenty-nine went to Onondaga, four attended SUNY Morrisville, and two went to Cayuga Community College.
The program was funded through the generosity of AT&T, which donated $30,000, and Bank of America, which contributed $20,000.
Residential students have more dining options during the 2013-2014 academic year, including an optional weekend meal plan. Other expanded options focus on healthier food choices and a broader array of deli-style sandwiches with expanded choices of breads, specialty fillings, and accompaniments.
The SRC Arena and Events Center and the Southwest Area YMCA both experienced tremendous growth during the 2012-2013 academic year.
Expanded programming for campus and the community to include specialized programs for children and families, tweens, teens, and seniors.
In 2012-2013 the Southwest Y’s membership grew to include more than 1,000 Onondaga students, faculty, and staff and approached 700 individuals and families from the community.
Number of Days with Events
More than 85% of the programs in 2012-2013 were College events, community meetings, or high school sports events.
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