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People Make GCC’s Arcade Campus Center a Success, Associate Dean Tells Trustees

April 11, 2013

Arcade, New York – Dr. Deborah M. DiNoto, associate dean of Genesee Community College’s 19-year old Arcade Campus Center, told members of the Board of Trustees Monday evening that dedicated and talented people are the key ingredients of the Campus Center’s success. The Board of Trustees met at the Center, located on Edward Street in Arcade, for its regular monthly meeting Monday.

The Center offers a wide variety of courses to students living in Arcade and surrounding communities. Just as significant, the Center attracts faculty members from across Western New York. “We have faculty with rich talent, here in our own community and coming from as far as the Buffalo area to the northwest, Rochester to the northeast, and Olean to the south,” Dr. DiNoto said. “These faculty members bring deep knowledge of their fields, advanced credentials, and often a lot of real-world experience to their students.”

The Campus Center’s Community Advisory Committee, consisting of civic, business and educational leaders, also gets credit for the Center’s success, the dean said. The Advisory Committee offers advice on programs and courses, helps faculty and staff members identify community partnerships, and brings community needs to the attention of the Center staff.

Dr. DiNoto said that leaders of school districts and civic organizations surrounding Arcade take an active interest in the Center and in student needs. Dr. DiNoto cited the Pioneer, Springville, West Valley, Holland, Franklinville, Freedom, Ellicottville, and Fillmore school districts as valued partners. She also said that Campus Center faculty and staff have partnered with the Springville Center for the Arts, Arcade Lions Club, Seneca Nation, Head Start, and the Chamber of Commerce on a variety of programs.

During the last full academic year (2011-2012), the Arcade Campus Center attracted 1,833 registrations. Students came from 33 different towns and villages. The Center serves students of all ages, with 46% of students last year over the age of 21. Thirteen percent of students were over 40. Popular degree programs were General Studies, Teacher Education Transfer, Business, Office Technology, and Criminal Justice. Many Arcade-area students also attend classes at other campus centers, such as the Warsaw Campus Center, and the Batavia Campus.

Dr. DiNoto also said that Arcade Center faculty and staff members are proud of the technology resources at the Center and the Center’s community outreach, both of which add quality to course offerings. Every classroom at the Center is now equipped with “smart classroom” technology, enabling instructors and students to share resources from computer to computer, access the internet, and display a variety of images, including microscopic images. The Arcade Center also offers “synchronous” distance learning classes, which enable students at different locations to participate in classes through live video conferencing. Genesee’s Adult Educational Opportunity Center assigns a counselor, Deborah L. Titus, to work out of the Arcade Center. Ms. Titus helps community residents develop educational and career plans, and assists residents in obtaining financial assistance for education at Genesee, as well as other colleges and educational providers.

Business instructor David E. Parker, who has taught a variety of business and economics classes at Arcade for 13 years, said that he believes the faculty brings both theoretical knowledge and real-life experience to the classroom. Mr. Parker, for example, spent much of his career in banking. “I keep in touch with many of my students, and I know that when they leave here [for other colleges], they are on par with their peers or above,” he told trustees.

Michael C. Kasprzyk , CEO of Inex, Inc. and a member of the Arcade Campus Center’s Community Advisory Committee, urged trustees to set rigorous standards for students, foster students’ commitment to lifelong learning, and help students develop communication and collaboration skills. Mr. Kasprzyk also said that STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics) proficiencies are needed by industry today and represent great opportunities for Genesee students.

GCC student Nicholas J. Arnold, of Delevan, who served as a work-study student at the Arcade Center over the last year, praised the experience he had at Arcade. “The knowledge I gained here has been very valuable, and working at the Center as a student has been a real privilege,” he told trustees. Mr. Arnold plans to transfer to pursue a Bachelor’s degree following his graduation next month. He hopes to pursue a career in sports business.

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