Keuka College honored veterans and active duty personnel with a Nov. 11 ceremony held in Hegeman 109 and on the lawn near the World War II memorial.
The ceremony featured remarks by College President Jorge L. Díaz-Herrera; Chris Leahy, associate professor of history; Sander Diamond, professor of history; and Linda Park, director of Lightner Library. Eric Detar, College chaplain, offered a prayer of remembrance, and members of the Penn Yan VFW Honor Guard also took part.
Before the ceremony, members of the College and area community signed some 580 holiday cards that will be sent to veterans and active-duty service personnel across America and abroad.
Part of the American Red Cross Holiday Mail for Heroes program, the College campaign was sponsored by the Staff Advisory Council’s (SAC) Events Committee, co-chaired by Paulette Willemsen, secretary for the Division of Education and Division of Social Work, and BJ Hill, office manager for student affairs.
“Writing cards to our service men and women is a good way to spread holiday cheer and make them feel appreciated,” said Willemsen.
Vicki Tobias, database administrator and committee member, agrees.
“I had four brothers, a sister, and now a niece and nephew serve in the military, and I appreciate what they have done and continue to do,” she said.
Committee member Judy Gilmartin, administrative programmer, said writing her name on the cards “makes a more personal contact with a veteran, and I believe everyone should think about all of those in the service, not just those we know.”
Senior Caroline Arancio, an organizational communication major from Clinton, took time to sign a card because her best friend just returned from basic training, and “I want him to know that I am proud of him and support him.”
Olivia Hudson, a junior occupational science major from Adams, “doesn’t think the people in the military get enough credit for all they do,” while Bryan Chaffee, a sophomore criminal justice/criminology major from Keuka Park, wanted to “thank those who fight for our freedom.”
Aubrey Clark, a sophomore occupational science major from Fillmore; Dani Alred, a junior organizational communication major from Horseheads; Emily Grecco, a sophomore psychology major from Waverly; Jakiem Brown, a junior educational studies major from Rochester; Nicole Naidoo, a sophomore accounting major from Durban, South Africa; and Melissa Whipple, a sophomore psychology major from Victor all wanted to sign a card to show their appreciation for the service our military personnel provides.
Those who took part were asked to write a short message and sign their name on a card. In addition to writing messages and signing their names, many members of the campus and local community donated cards, including students at Keuka Lake School and Prattsburgh Central School, residents of Clinton Crest Manor, and participants in College’s Big Brothers Big Sisters program.
Works by Mozart, Rhianna, Van Morrison, and Leonard Bernstein will be among those performed by the Keuka College Chorale and Band at their annual winter concert Sunday, Nov. 17.
The performance, free and open to the public, begins at 3 p.m. in Norton Chapel.
Under the direction of Kelley Hamilton, music instructor and director of the chorale, and David Hamilton, adjunct instructor and director of band, the program features a “prism style of music, which means the chorale and band will perform continuously as the concert goes on,” said Kelley Hamilton.
The chorale and band will perform a wide variety of selections, including Hashivenu, a Hebrew folk song; Johnny has Gone for a Soldier, an Irish folk song; Overture from the Magic Flute, by Mozart; Moondance, by Van Morrison; Stay, by Rhianna; Gone and Cups Mash-up, by Anna Kendrick and Phil Phillips; Rhythm of Love, by the Plain White T’s; Please Come Home for Christmas, by Charles Brown; Jubilate Deo, by Jay Althouse; and selections from the musicals Jekyll and Hyde, Wicked, and West Side Story.
The grand finale will be Handel’s Hallelujah Chorus, performed by both the chorale and band. Members of the audience are welcome to participate.
Several soloists will featured, including Ariel Scott, a senior organizational communication major from Unadilla; Jonathan Moore, a sophomore political science/history major from Nichols; Trevor Irby, a sophomore exploratory major from Romulus; Ian Wentzel, a junior criminology/criminal justice major from Naples; Arek Olson, a sophomore management major from Wellsville; and Chung “Johnny” Nguyen, a senior management major from Hanoi, Vietnam.
“While the chorale and band are small groups, the students are eager and ready to go, and I think we have an ambitious program,” said Kelley Hamilton. “There are only a few students in the band, so they really have to take ownership of their music and their parts. I am excited for this concert because the students are excited.”
According to Kelley Hamilton, future plans for the music program include “having select vocal and instrumental groups, with eight to 10 students each, which could perform at College events.”
While the concert is free, donations will be accepted for purchase of new music, instruments, and other items needed for the advancement of the music program.
Senior Dylan Campbell received a $500 scholarship from the Upstate New York Chapter of the Turnaround Management Association (TMA) at its recent student night in Rochester.
An accounting major from Rockville, Md., Campbell was nominated for the scholarship by Professor of Management and Chair of the Division of Business and Management Ann Tuttle. The scholarship recognizes students who excel in academics, service, and leadership, and who have vast business experience.
“This is a scholarship that often goes to MBA students,” said Tuttle. “It’s a big deal to win one of TMA’s scholarships because Keuka students are competing with students from all over Western New York—many from SUNY schools.”
“It was a tremendous honor to receive this scholarship from such a prestigious organization,” said Campbell. “I will use the scholarship money to help offset graduate school application fees. It feels good to be recognized for all of my hard work at Keuka. I think my Field Period experiences helped me earn the award as well.”
“He has had opportunities at a minor league baseball team, an accounting firm, as well as the Securities and Exchange Commission,” said Tuttle. “These Field Periods have supported his in-classroom learning and put him at the top.”
Campbell competed against students from St. John Fisher, SUNY Brockport, Ithaca College, Rochester Institute of Technology, and SUNY Buffalo School of Law. He is the second Keuka student to receive the award; the first was Laura Williams in 2007.
The annual TMA student night was sponsored by JC Jones & Associates and serves as a networking event, according to Tuttle.
“Typically, the TMA has members from accounting, management, banking, and law, as well as industrial auctioneers,” said Tuttle, who has been taking students to TMA’s student night since 2005. “Students are able to meet with these business professionals and discuss potential opportunities and industry changes.”
Other students from Keuka who were at the meeting included Jeremy Pyszczynski, a senior accounting major from Alden; Stuart Gardner, a senior management major from Durban, South Africa; Brittany Griffiths, a senior accounting major from Keuka Park; and Brittany Gleason, a junior mathematics major from Carthage.
The TMA is the only international non-profit association dedicated to corporate renewal and turnaround management. Established in 1988, TMA has more than 9,000 members in 49 chapters, including 32 in North America.
Keuka College will mark Veterans Day Monday, Nov. 11, with a 4 p.m. ceremony at the World War II memorial near Lightner Library. (In case of inclement weather, it will be held in Hegeman Hall 109.)
College President Jorge L. Díaz-Herrera will deliver remarks along with Chris Leahy, associate professor of history; Sander Diamond, professor of history; and Linda Park, director of Lightner Library. Rev. Eric Detar, College chaplain, will offer a prayer of remembrance, and members of the Penn Yan VFW Honor Guard are expected to take part.
After the ceremony, refreshments will be served in Lightner Library.
Erected by members of the Political Science and History Club in 2005, the memorial commemorates the 60th anniversary of V-E Day, honors World War II veterans, and recognizes the contributions Keuka College nurses made during the war.
By Dr. Sander A. Diamond, professor of history
At exactly 11 o’clock on the morning of Nov. 11, 1918, the Great War of 1914 came to an end. By the time the Armistice was signed, more than 10 million had been killed. Most military scholars agree that 6.8 million men died in combat and another 3 million-plus from accidents, disease, or in POW camps.
During the war, there were two major fronts: the East, where the Russians and Germans fought, and the West, in Flanders and Northern France. Before the war destroyed the landscape, the fields looked like a van Gogh painting, filled with flowers, cows, and shafts of wheat mixed in with red poppies. In 1915, John McCrae published the most famous poem of the war: In Flanders Fields. In time, every school child memorized the poem that began:
In Flanders Fields the poppies grow
Between the crosses, row on row…
The British Legion chose the red poppies as the symbol of remembrance, fabricated out of wire and red paper. They were first worn at the first Armistice Day and ever since.
The first Armistice Day was commemorated Nov. 11, 1919, at 11 a.m. in all Allied capitals amid hushed crowds, bells ringing out the hour. In towns and cities, large and small groups of veterans and their fellow citizens gathered around make-shift memorials to mark the hour. Nearly all of the veterans wore their uniforms, their chests decorated with medals. In the United Kingdom and its possessions, they called it Remembrance Day. It was called Armistice Day in the United States until changed to Veterans Day in the 1950s to honor all who served in later conflicts.
The reality of the loss was everywhere to be seen: women in mourning dresses; fathers with black armbands mixing with veterans horribly deformed, many in wooden wheelchairs or on crutches with missing limbs some with faces so disfigured that they wore masks; those whose lungs had been poisoned by gas, still coughing.
The bodies of those who fell in battle were collected and many put in temporary grave sites near where the battles were fought. Families were given the option of having the remains sent home or buried in Europe. It was a painstaking task; often, the remains had to be exhumed. Of the 116,708 soldiers who died as part of the American Expeditionary Force in World War I, 30,921 are buried in Europe.
The bodies that were returned home were buried in local or military cemeteries. In the inter-war years, memorials were built and erected in many towns and cities. In 1921, Congress created a single memorial in Arlington National Cemetery on the property once owned by General Robert E. Lee. In France, the bodies of four unknown soldiers were exhumed and brought to a small chapel. A U.S. soldier was handed a bouquet of white roses and asked to place it on one of the four coffins. The one he selected was sent to Arlington and placed in an above-ground sarcophagus made of white marble: the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier. In 1931, a more elaborate tomb replaced the original and after World War II, several additional tombs were added, and today the memorial is known as the Tomb of the Unknowns. Each Nov. 11, a solemn ceremony is held, with the president placing a wreath on the tomb. It is our most sacred ground, guarded day and night by special service personnel.
Today, as we approach the 100th anniversary of the outbreak of World War I not one service person remains. The last American, Frank Buckles, died in February 2011 and the last Brit, Harry Patch, just three years ago, victims of what Lincoln called “the silent artillery of time.”
On Nov. 11, the Keuka College community will gather at the World War II memorial that stands near Hegeman Hall. It was dedicated May 9, 2005, the 60th anniversary of the end of World War II. It was a gift to the College and community from the students in the History/Political Science Club. On one face of the monument, all of the theaters of war are listed; on the other, a testament to the Keuka College nurses and the program created in the darkest days of World War II. Nursing graduates have served in all wars since the founding of the program. A few yards away is another small monument remembering the 50th anniversary of the end of World War II. Rising above it is an oak tree, the symbol of the College.
On Nov. 11, the College will remember all who have served our nation and continue to serve. We will also remember the 124,913 Americans who are buried overseas. A formation of veterans from the local VFW will fire their rifles at the end of the commemoration just as veterans have since the first Armistice Day in 1919.
We must take time to remember and honor all of those who served and continue to serve on land, on the sea, and in the air. We also must remember those who are still in the line of fire— in Afghanistan and other regional conflicts. When our service personnel return home, many will return to civilian life as they knew it. Others will enter college and will be welcomed as students on our campus, the two World War II monuments reminding them that Keuka College has always been a welcoming community.
There is also one final nugget from our past, namely, the Field Period program, which was, in part, created in 1942 so some of our students could help bring in the harvest since “the boys” were overseas.
The creativity of the College community was on display Oct. 31 as students and staff took part in the annual Halloween costume contest.
Communications Manager Gretchen Parsells snapped photos of the winners and others who spiced up the lunch hour in Geiser Refectory.
Award-winning fiction author Tessa Mellas will read from her works Thursday, Nov. 7, as part of Keuka College’s Spotlight Series.
Free and open to the public, the reading begins at 7 p.m. in the Corning Room of Dahlstrom Student Center.
Mellas received the 2013 Iowa Short Fiction Award for her debut story collection Lungs Full of Noise. The book features 12 “magically realistic” stories that explore women’s issues, culture, society, and psychology.
A native New Yorker, Mellas earned her bachelor’s degree from St. Lawrence University and master’s degree from Bowling Green State University. She is pursuing her doctoral degree from the University of Cincinnati, where she teaches composition and creative writing. She will serve as a distinguished visiting writer at Bowling Green State University this spring.
Mellas’ stories have appeared in such magazines as Crazyhorse; Gulf Coast; Hayden’s Ferry Review; Story Quarterly; Light Speed; and Washington Square Review. She has also been published in the anthologies 40 Stories: New Writing from Harper Perennial; Apocalypse Now: Prose and Poetry from the End of Days; and Girls on Fire.
A former theater director, the Cincinnati resident has competed nationally in synchronized figure skating.
Several members of the Keuka College community were seen streaking across campus today (Friday, Oct. 25).
Streaking their hair, that is.
And it was for a good cause. The Keuka Against Cancer Club and Women’s Center dedicated the week of Oct. 21-25 to raise awareness of breast cancer.
The highlight of the week was a friendly staff and faculty competition to see who could raise the most money to be donated to the American Cancer Society. The faculty or staff member who raised the most was asked to streak his or her hair pink.
Jim Blackburn, vice president for student development, raised the most money—$81—and not only streaked his hair pink, but also part of his beard.
In addition to Blackburn, who received breast cancer pins, bracelets, and a t-shirt for his fundraising efforts, other members of the College community donated money to streak their hair pink ($1), or blue, purple, or green ($.50).
“The money we raised, nearly $200, will be sent to the American Cancer Society to help find a cure for breast cancer,” said Rebecca Capek, resident director of Saunders Hall and a Success Advocate. Capek also serves as adviser to the Keuka Against Cancer Club.
Other activities included ‘painting’ the campus pink by tying pink ribbons around trees; breast cancer Jeopardy!; a bra toss game; lunch with a breast cancer survivor; breast cancer t-shirt sales; and various give-aways and prizes.
Stephanie Meindl Dikey, a 2002 graduate of Keuka College, recently published The Adventures of Phoenix & Tucson: The Great Rescue, a children’s book that focuses on her pet dog (Phoenix) and cat (Tucson).
Both were rescued animals and the book is about their rescue and the special bond they created. The book includes a section targeted toward teachers and features several lesson ideas.
In this interview with Executive Director of Communications Doug Lippincott, Dikey, who teaches third grade in Webster, N.Y., tells how she was inspired to write the book by her pets and her students. She also outlines how Keuka College prepared her for a teaching and writing career, why teaching is at the core of the book, and her plans to turn The Adventures of Phoenix and Tucson into a series.
The images are arresting. Color portraits of African women and children, their faces lined with the trials of life, and yet a common denominator among most: genuine smiles.
These unmistakable indicators of the human experience – happiness—are the handiwork of senior education major Winsome Zinkievich, who traveled to Africa this summer with a group of adults under the umbrella of Tirzah International, a faith-based mission agency. Zinkievich’s younger brother and uncle traveled with Tirzah the year before, which piqued her interest in making the trip.
The group spent about two weeks in Bujumbura, capital of the country of Burundi for about two weeks, with another four days in Nairobi, the capital of Kenya. It felt like two years, Zinkievich said. Every day, they were driven from their protected housing compound, King’s Conference Center, to the Women’s Center, where a 10-month residential program was just beginning for 46 women, most widowed or orphaned.
The women receive counseling and group therapy and learn to sew, a trade that can provide them future income, she said.
“It was my mission to take pictures of all the women,” Zinkievich said. “A lot of them lost their husbands because of civil war or AIDS, or there’s children whose parents abandoned them. Some are young women who are my age and they’ve lived more than me. After I took my first photo of one of the ladies, I looked at it and knew it wasn’t something to just put on Facebook.”
Her photos could tell the story of each of the women, Zinkievich realized, describing how she learned of heart-wrenching suffering and loss, yet a joy in daily life, as she got to know each one without speaking their language. One 20-year-old widow, a year younger than Zinkievich herself, had endured five miscarriages and the death of her husband. One of the woman’s surviving children is afflicted with “water on the brain” and is not likely to live past childhood. In her photo, she is beaming as she holds her two children on her lap.
“Even though she lost her husband and lost other kids, she’s still here and so happy for the day,” Zinkievich said. “I’ve been more disappointed about not getting a text from someone, than she seemed to me. It just changes your way of looking at the world and what’s really important.”
In many cases, women who had lost everything were filled with faith and happiness – faith that the program would help them provide for their families, and happiness “simply because they were alive,” Zinkievich said. “In a world where they have so little, these women still cherish the moment and believe in the future. I realized that maybe if I shared their pictures, I could show their emotion and [how real they are] … and maybe I could change the world a little for the better.”
A plan quickly came together to make framed prints of every woman’s image and sell them for $40 each to support them during their 10-month program. It costs about $60/month to house and feed each woman, a cost covered by Tirzah through donations from sponsors.
Back at Keuka, she has not lost that passion to make a difference with her photos.
“All these women have a story and they deserve their story to be told. None of the images are altered. I didn’t change any of the colors – it’s just there. That’s how it was, and it’s important to me to share that with the world.”
She said this was the first time “I went and did something, not even for me, but for other people and I was proud of it. It was just amazing,” she said. “There isn’t a day that goes by that I don’t think about going back, or how I can help them, or ways to make my life different because of them, like buying less things and appreciating what I have or especially appreciating the day. So many people don’t think about how wonderful it is that we’re here, alive and in the now. Instead of thinking about your crappy day, how can we make our day awesome and wonderful and worth living?”
According to Zinkieviech, the experience was deeply spiritual for her.
“When I was there, there was a huge belief that it was all going to be OK. Faith is like believing without seeing. The people there have so much faith that it’s going to be OK and that they’re going to figure it out, that it’s all going to come together and that’s a lot more than we have. God is in Africa to me and people are just happy to know God [there]. So that was huge.”
Zinkievich will graduate Keuka in late May and said she’d love to go back to Burundi to visit in June, when the women finish their 10-month program.
“It would be so great to see how they went from Point A to Point B,” she said.
Currently, a selection of Zinkievich’s photos are on display on the fourth floor of Hegeman Hall on the Keuka College campus. A full gallery of portraits can also be seen online at: http://www.flickr.com/photos/101465662@N06/
To order a print of an African portrait, contact the artist at: firstname.lastname@example.org
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