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Update on SUNY-Related Projects and Proposals

College community,

As we wind down the semester and head into the busy final exam stretch, I wanted to offer a brief update on several SUNY-related items that we’ve discussed throughout the semester.

The College has learned that two of our Performance Improvement Fund (PIF) proposals have been approved for funding by SUNY. We received a total commitment of $150,000 to establish a Community Service Program and hire an Internship Development Specialist. These funds would be divided over a two-year period. Both projects will reside within the Career and Internship Services office.

Through a new Community Service Program, the College would gather in one location a wide-range of opportunities for students, clubs and organizations to engage in community service. This could include, but not be limited to, one-time events (awareness walks, bowl-a-thons, etc.), single-day volunteer opportunities (food banks/kitchens, Habitat for Humanity projects, senior citizen centers, etc.), and longer-term or ongoing opportunities requiring a greater commitment.

The Internship Development Specialist will assist academic departments in placing students in work-based learning activities, market internships to the general student population, expand the internship program, engage more students in relevant work-based activities, and integrate the SUNY Professional Skills Preparatory course into the Career Planning class. Applied learning opportunities have long been recognized as critical components to a student’s education, allowing students to close the “skills gap” that is so frequently cited by employers in many fields.

Additionally, we are anticipating approval of our participation in a cohort of 10 community colleges that will establish Developmental English Learning Communities. The project is being led by Onondaga Community College. We expect to receive approximately $20,000 to expand the pool of students who place directly into Freshman English and to integrate reading and writing for students who need skill development in both areas. In these models, students receive real-time skill development and extended support for their work in first-year composition, or integration of reading comprehension and writing skills. Assessment data from existing programs nationally, and within New York, demonstrate significantly increased retention and success rates using these models.

Two SUNY Orange diversity initiatives are still being considered for PIF funding, and I expect to learn more about our application for the SUNY Guided Pathways Institute perhaps as early as this Friday (Dec. 8). More to follow as it becomes available.

I commend the College community for collaborating to bring forward those innovative and effective ideas that have already been funded by SUNY, and for developing those still-pending initiatives that have a strong likelihood of approval. Feedback I’ve received from SUNY has noted the excellence of our proposals. This is yet another example of the benefits of strong shared governance, as each of these ideas received input and vetting from the College community. It also shows the creative and innovative focus on supporting the student of today that we all share at SUNY Orange.

Finally, I offer my appreciation to those of you who have invested your time and talents, in heavy doses in some instances, to create, sharpen and finalize these critical projects.



Dr. Kristine Young
Office of the President