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College Joins Yes We Must Coalition

Keuka College has joined a national organization that advocates for needy students and their colleges.

Dr. Gary Smith

The College recently became a member of the Yes We Must Coalition, a non-profit organization of 32 small, private, non-profit colleges and universities across the U.S. that work to help low-income, first generation, and minority students receive a higher education.

Coalition members collaborate to lower the costs of higher education and be a voice—supported by data—to educate the public and influence policy and practice that impacts students. Each member of Yes We Must is a college or university with fewer than 5,000 students with at least 50 percent of its students eligible to receive Pell Grants.

“Keuka College is a perfect fit for the Yes We Must Coalition,” said Dr. Gary Smith, vice president for enrollment management, marketing, and international relations. “Since its founding nearly 125 years ago, Keuka has been dedicated to providing access to higher education to under-served students.”

Smith indicated that 25 percent of Keuka freshmen who enrolled last fall are first generation students.

“We look forward to sharing best practices with other member schools and supporting the mission and goals of the Yes We Must Coalition,” said Smith.

Motivated by data that supports a widening education gap—for example, students from rich families are seven times as likely to have earned a bachelor’s degree by age 24 than those from poor families—the coalition was formed three years ago.

And it seems its voice is being heard.

In April, presidents from 12 Yes We Must schools met with U.S. Secretary of Education Arne Duncan and key White House staff members in Washington, D.C.  They shared information about how their institutions operate so efficiently and discussed possible collaborations with the U.S. Department of Education.

In addition, the coalition’s work is supported by a $150,000 grant from the Kresge Foundation.

Carolina on His Mind

By Amanda Harrison ’12

This time, Neil Siebenhar means it.

After taking an early retirement package from The Timken Company some 10 years ago, Siebenhar joined the Keuka College faculty.

Now the associate professor of management and chair of the Division of Business and Management is retiring again, and this time he won’t return to the corporate world or academia.

“It’s one thing when you take early retirement and work some more,” said Siebenhar, “but it’s another when you say ‘I’m done.’”

Siebenhar and his wife will head south to be closer to their children and grandchildren.

“We have three children—all in North Carolina—and eight grandchildren,” said Siebenhar, adding that No. 8 arrived less than a week ago. “We just don’t see enough of them. We agreed that I’d work 5 to 10 years and I will have worked nine.” (more…)

Developing Students of Color as Global Business Leaders

Keuka College has established a scholarship with an eye toward developing students of color as global business leaders.

Chevy DeVaney

The College will award up to five, $25,000 scholarships annually to U.S. students pursuing a Master of Science degree in management with a concentration in international business.

“This new scholarship fits well with the College’s commitment to diversity,” said Dr. Jorge L. Díaz-Herrera, president of the College.

Dr. Gary Smith, vice president for the Center for Professional Studies and International Programs, views the scholarship as “an excellent opportunity for Black/African American, Native American, Alaskan Native, Hispanic, Asian American, and Pacific Islander students to develop the skills necessary to become leaders, from both a community and global perspective.” (more…)

Graduates of CJ Systems Program Take Part in JCC Commencement Ceremony

Vice President for Academic Affairs Dr. Anne Weed is flanked by newly minted Keuka degree holders Valerie Chapman (left) and Sherry Williams.

There was a different twist to the commencement ceremony at Jefferson Community College (JCC) in Watertown Friday (May 18).

For the first time, students earning Keuka College bachelor’s degrees in criminal justice systems through the Accelerated Studies for Adults Program (ASAP) participated in the ceremony.

Receiving degrees were Valerie Chapman (Watertown), Amber Hammitt (Calcium), Brittney Kiblin-Raymundo (Woodville), Lacey Northrup (Glenfield), Heather Patterson (Mannsville), and Sherry Williams (Watertown). (more…)

College Looks to Middle East for Next Partnership

Keuka College President Jorge L. Díaz-Herrera and American University of Science and Technology (AUST) President Madame Hiam Sakr signed a memorandum of understanding in Beruit, Lebanon..

Already a major higher educational player in Southeast Asia, Keuka College appears poised to extend its educational influence to the Middle East.

Keuka President Dr. Jorge L. Díaz-Herrera and Madame Hiam Sakr, president of the American University of Science and Technology (AUST) in Beirut, Lebanon, recently signed a memorandum of understanding (MOU) that could lead to collaboration between the two schools.

“I was pleasantly surprised with what I saw,” said Díaz-Herrera. “The city is as beautiful and sophisticated as ever, on the shores of the Mediterranean, full of history and charm, and surrounded by fresh, green mountains. Our faculty and students will enjoy spending time there as exchange scholars.” (more…)