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O S W E G O A Publication of the Office of Alumni and Parent Relations

Parents S


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Smaller Classes Making Big Difference for opportunities for learning to come alive, such as exploring fads and fashions from the era or discussing topics of the day. “It gives us firsthand experience of what the 1920s were like,” said Greg Zak ’08 of Hampton Bays. “With the smaller classes, it’s better.” Tyler Branch ’08 of Saranac Lake has Freshmen in Gwen Kay’s “The American Experience: 1920s” class found that the class demonstrate some of the fads of the decade. offers better group interaction. “It gives a chance for everyone can engage in debate — prosecution versus defense — about the issues in the Scopes to be heard,” he said. trial,” she said. “A class significantly larger From a teaching perspective, Kay finds the smaller classes rewarding. “With 19 stu- would make these and other activities logistically impossible, and impractical.” dents, I can assign each person a piece of — Tim Nekritz M ’05 the Leopold-Loeb case, from evidence to newspaper accounts to court testimony, and we can piece together what happened. We

Photo by Sally Van Buren

Contractors work on the walls of the new Campus Center, Oswego’s first new construction in over 30 years. This huge undertaking will connect all aspects of campus life — academic, social and athletic — in one integrated central complex. The complex is expected to be completed by fall 2006. Watch the construction with Oswego’s web cam at



he idea of emphasizing smaller classes for freshmen is to make a larger impact on learning. So far, the results of an expanded effort to that effect on campus are promising. Starting this fall, the college included all freshmen in the FirstChoice experience of at least one class with enrollment capped at 19 students. Better interaction is a common theme cited by the budding journalism majors in a “History of American Journalism” class taught by Linda Loomis ’90, M ’97. “I think it’s a better environment because she doesn’t only lecture to us, she asks our opinion,” said Gloriel Smith ’08 of Rochester. “We feel like we get to know each student by heart and make new friends.” Dan Kruse ’08 of North Salem also noted the increase in individual attention. “It’s a lot easier to get help from the teacher,” he said. “She knows you and can help you more specifically. You can find out more what you as a person need to work on.” In history professor Gwen Kay’s class, “The American Experience: 1920s,” freshmen found the smaller class size allowing





IN THIS EDITION: • Small Classes Make Big Difference • Yearbook Available • FANs Debuts • Important Dates to Remember Office of Alumni and Parent Relations King Alumni Hall SUNY Oswego Oswego, NY 13126

O S W E G O Parents

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Family Supports Oswego


ducation is important for the Walton family, and parents Brian and Sally Walton show that importance by supporting SUNY Oswego with a generous donation to the Annual Fund. Their son Mark Walton ’06 is an Oswego public justice major, whose dream is to become a New York State Trooper. His brother, Kurt Walton, is set to graduate this spring from Onondaga Community College. Although both Sally and Brian support the colleges they attended, the impetus for their Oswego donation was something as simple as a phone call. “Someone called me on the phone in the end of my son’s freshman fall semester and asked,” says Brian Walton. He and his wife had been happy with their son’s experience at Oswego, Mark seemed to like the college and was doing well, and they just wanted to help out. So they said, “Yes,” to the Oswego student calling as part The Walton family gathers during winter break: seated, of the annual Telefund. Mark Walton ’06 and mother Sally; standing from left, “Hopefully Mark will benefit father Brian and brother Kurt. from it and we can help out other kids attending the college as well,” says with the Social Security Administration in Watertown for Jefferson, Lewis and St. Brian. Underlying their generosity is a firm belief Lawrence counties. The couple makes their gift as an unrein education and the desire to pass on the stricted donation, leaving it up to the college benefits of a college degree. administration to use it for whatever is most “Both my wife and I have benefited from needed. “Maybe a department has a need or college educations and feel that it is useful it could go to capital expenditures or scholarfor many people. We like to return some of what we have received, both for our son and ships or whatever it might be,” says Brian. “Why put restrictions on something if you other families,” says Brian. don’t have to?” Sally is a claims representative with the Social Security Administration in Oswego and Brian is the assistant district manager

Proposal Would Maintain Value


swego President Deborah F. Stanley has reiterated her support for the proposed SUNY Tuition Guarantee. “This proposal responds to families’ expressed desire for a way to predict what their college costs will be over four years,” Stanley said. “It provides flat, stable tuition for each entering freshman for four years. Each freshman class would pay more than the class before, but its own tuition would be frozen for four years. This plan is the best I’ve seen for serving the interests of families and their students. They have told us they want a high quality education at an affordable price and a dependable price. This proposal has the potential to answer their needs.” Stanley spoke before the SUNY board of trustees finance committee Jan. 5, explaining how the 10-year-old Oswego Guarantee has helped families of Oswego students plan to meet college costs by freezing the cost of room and board for each entering freshman for four years. Room and board are the principal college costs that are controlled at the campus level in SUNY. Tuition, the largest piece of the college cost pie, is determined by the system

trustees, the governor and the legislature. Historically, it has been frozen for several years before jumping steeply. One set of students ends up bearing the full brunt of a pent-up price increase instead of all students sharing reasonable increases over time, Stanley said. “The proposed SUNY Tuition Guarantee is an attempt to inject a measure of rational planning in tuition decisions,” Stanley said. She pointed out that private colleges raise tuition every year based on rational analysis, and said that adopting a similar rational price-setting method will help SUNY “gain in stature, quality and stability” while remaining “an incredible value.” The proposed $600 increase in tuition for next fall is a separate issue that remains to be negotiated among the trustees, governor and legislature. It would be covered for lowincome students by the state’s Tuition Assistance Program. — Julie Harrison Blissert To read the entire story, click on news_story.html?id=479_0_2_0_C

JOIN US IN READING The Speed of Dark by Elizabeth Moon sped to the top of the list to become the 2005 Oswego Reading Initiative book selection to be read next summer by the SUNY Oswego community. The book won the 2003 Nebula Award for best novel. The Speed of Dark is the first novel in the ORI series. The Seattle Times called it, “an engaging journey into the dark edges that define the self.” SUNY Oswego joined such schools as Brown, Duke and Stanford universities among the 50 Best Colleges for Girls selected by CosmoGirl! magazine. The October issue featured the first of what is expected to be an annual list for CosmoGirl!, a Hearst publication for young teens with a circulation of around 1.3 million. It is the younger sibling of Cosmopolitan, also published by Hearst Magazines. The Princeton Review named Oswego’s School of Business one of the Best 143 Business Schools in its new graduate school guidebook, released in the fall. “Students who enroll in the School of Business at SUNY Oswego can expect several things: excellent value for their money, intimate classes, knowledgeable professors, state-of-the-art facilities, and an excellent hockey team,” the guide’s profile of Oswego begins.

WEAK MARKET SENDS GRADUATES BACK TO SCHOOL According to the latest survey from the Office of Career Services 83 percent of 2003 Oswego graduates are either working in full-time jobs or pursuing graduate degrees. While a smaller percentage found work, those who did earned a higher average salary than the previous class. The percentage of graduates choosing to attend graduate school shot up from 12 percent in 2002 to 18 percent for 2003 graduates. See the whole survey online at http:// svcs/career_svcs/alumni/alumnisurvey.html.

OSWEGO PARENTS Published each semester by the SUNY Oswego Office of Alumni and Parent Relations Michele Reed, Editor Julie Harrison Blissert Emily King ’05 Tim Nekritz M ’05 Contributing Writers Jim Russell ’83, Photographer Sally Van Buren, Contributing Photographer Midstate Litho, Production and Printing Office of Alumni and Parent Relations King Alumni Hall, SUNY Oswego Oswego, NY 13126 Betsy Oberst, Executive Director Phone: 315-312-2258 FAX: 315-312-5570 E-mail:

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FANs to Link Students, Alumni


n exciting new initiative is under way on the FANs e-board members prepare SUNY Oswego campus. The Future Alumni for a year of activities linking Network — FANs — began this fall to link current SUNY Oswego students and the Alumni Association. From left students with Oswego alumni. are: Vice President for Finances “Research has proven that students who are involved Yasmin Castro ’06, President now as students in the alumni association will remain Eddy Disla ’06, Coordinator of involved as alumni: in giving, volunteering and being Member and Public Relations leaders,” said Michelle Tackett Spinner ’98, assistant Kerry Brewer ’05 and Vice director of alumni relations and adviser to FANs. President for Programming Oswego had an Undergraduate Alumni Association, Jennifer Andrade ’08. Absent from the photo is Mary Beth which was disbanded in the early 1990s due to Beaton ’05, Alumni Board of changes in the student population, including fewer Directors student representative. students living on campus and more non-traditional students. Spinner looked at 30 campuses that currently have student-alumni programs and gathered ideas from the “best of the best.” During the fall semester, the group held informational meetings and voted on officers. With a full executive board in place, FANs will begin focusing on setting goals and planning an event for the spring semester. The Senior Class Planning Committee will be a committee of FANs and the Alumni Sharing Knowledge and Alumni-in-Residence programs will call on FANs members to assist in bringing alumni back to campus to share their experiences with current students. All students are welcome to take part in FANs. For more information, they should contact the Alumni Office in King Alumni Hall or call 315-312-2258. “It’s exciting to be getting the current students involved,” said Spinner. “They are the link among Oswego’s past, present and future.”

Yearbook Tradition Continues


he Ontarian yearbook is back! After two years in which Oswego students had no yearbook, the traditional rite of passage has been reinstated. Student Association President Kevin Sutherland ’05, receiving requests from students who wanted a yearbook, found there was a budget allocation but no adviser. He approached the Alumni Office and got the help he needed. Michelle Tackett Spinner ’98, assistant director of alumni relations, is the new adviser to the yearbook staff and King Alumni Hall provides office space for the students to work on their publication. The 2005 Ontarian is now on sale through Feb. 14. Parents can order a yearbook for $45 with an optional nameplate for an additional $4. Parent ads are also available for $15 each or $20 with a photo. “The Ontarian is a great graduation gift,” said Spinner. For more information, go online to or contact the staff by phone, (315) 312-3630; Fax, (315) 312-5570; or e-mail:

Seniors Plan Year-End Activities


he senior class will remember the victims of the September 11 terrorist attacks, cheer on the Laker teams and dance the night away, all in preparation for their upcoming graduation. The Senior Class Planning Committee has been busy making plans for the Class of 2005’s final semester. Erin Ryan ’04 (third from left), a graphic design graduate, celebrates with The senior gift will be her family, including sister Kristin Ryan Overholt ’96 (at right) during the to a September 11 dessert reception and champagne toast on the eve of December graduamemorial that will tion. The reception, sponsored by the Oswego Alumni Association, was include a garden with held in historic Sheldon Hall. flowers that bloom in September. The Class of 2005 will join their 15. Those attending will get free spirit items and will be eligible to win prizes. donations with the gifts of the three preA senior trip to Boston is planned for April ceding classes. “These are the four classes who were at Oswego when 9/11 happened,” and seniors will kick off a week of pre-graduation activities with a formal ball April 30. said Michelle Tackett Spinner ’98, adviser Senior Week, May 2 to 6, will include a to the Senior Class Planning Committee. variety of activities. Students will also be Students will be asked to contribute able to pick up their yearbooks that week. $20.05 in honor of their class year toward The traditional Torchlight ceremony will be the memorial project. The gift will also be held Friday, May 13. funded by the sale of a class T-shirt, availFor more information on senior class able in short-sleeved and long-sleeved veractivities or to order a shirt for your student, sions, as well as a hoodie. click on Seniors will cheer on the Laker hockey team Feb. 12 and the basketball teams Feb. seniorclass/

Drew Jacoby and Prince Credell perform with Alonzo King’s LINES Ballet. The troupe will perform “Before the Blues,” April 6 at 7 p.m. in Waterman Theatre of Tyler Hall, sponsored by Artswego.


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Campus Clips PLAN NOW FOR GRADUATION It’s not too early to make reservations for May commencement. The annual Torchlight dinner and ceremony are slated for Friday evening, May 13. Dinner tickets for graduating seniors will only be $5 each thanks to grants from the Oswego Alumni Association and Auxiliary Services. To make reservations for graduates and their families, call the Office of Alumni and Parent Relations at 315-312-2258.

FILE TO GRADUATE! The Registrar’s Office sends letters in the spring semester to all prospective graduates (all students with junior standing), with instructions and information on how and when to file online for graduation. Once the student has signed into the myoswego Web site, the graduation application form is linked to the student’s registration link. The deadline for filing is Feb. 15 for May and August 2005 graduation and Sept. 30 for December 2005 graduation. Students are not automatically placed on a graduation list; it is the student’s responsibility to make sure he or she files online by the appropriate deadline or contacts the Registrar’s graduation area for help in doing so. Students must file by the deadline dates in order to be sure that their names will be printed in the commencement program. Information regarding the graduation process and all deadlines are linked from the Registrar’s Web site at Anyone with questions may contact the graduation area of the Registrar’s Office.

SCHOLARSHIPS AVAILABLE Now’s the time for students to apply for scholarships for the 2005-2006 academic year. Over 200 are available through the Oswego College Foundation. A printed listing of scholarships has been sent to all resident stu-

Donna Goldsmith ’82 (right) visits with students in a communications studies class this fall. Goldsmith, senior vice president of consumer products for World Wrestling Entertainment, shared her experiences with current students through the Alumni-inResidence program, and also served as keynote speaker at the Communications Alumni Dinner.

dents. Find the listing of scholarships and awards, along with instructions for applying and application forms online at scholarships. For additional information, call 315-312-3003 or e-mail mmanwari@Oswego.EDU.

CAREER HELP? JUST A.S.K.! If your student is looking to explore a career, the Oswego Alumni Association has help. Our A.S.K. — Alumni Sharing Knowledge — program links current students with alumni mentors who can answer questions about a career, offer a job-shadowing experience or help make connections. Your student can be part of Oswego’s powerful alumni network! Call the Alumni Office at 315-312-2258.

Calendar Spring 2005 Jan. 20

Spring semester begins

Jan. 28– Feb. 23

Art Department Faculty Exhibition and Fifteen Years: A Selection of Student Works of Art, Tyler Art Gallery

Feb. 6–8

Career Panel Discussion with Oswego alumni, Tyler Hall

Feb. 16

Contrasts — Juan La Manna, Seung hee Yang, Robert Auler, Heather Sweeting, John McNeill, and Elizabeth Le Manna, Sheldon Hall Ballroom, 7 p.m.

Feb. 23

Jazz Harmonica: Hendrik Meurkens, Hewitt Union Ballroom, 7 p.m.

Feb. 24–26 March 4–6

“BIG: The Musical,” Waterman Theater, Tyler Hall.

March 4– April 3

42nd Annual Juried Student Art Exhibition and Master of Arts Thesis Exhibition, Tyler Art Gallery

March 10

“Snapshots,” Elements String Quartet, Waterman Theater, Tyler Hall, 7 p.m.

FINAL EXAM GOODIES Right now the end of the semester may seem ages away, but it will be upon us soon. And when it is, our students will need all the support they can get. So the Department of Campus Life offers Final Exam Goodies to help you send your student moral support – and an energy boost – to finish those papers and cram for exams. Snacker’s Delight and the Lighter Snacker are offered along with other choices to mix and match to meet individual students’ needs. Ordering information will be mailed to families about a month before finals, or contact the Hewitt Union main office at 315-312-2301.


March 14–18 Spring recess April 2

Jazz Concert with Brent Wallarab, Waterman Theatre, Tyler Hall, 7:30 p.m.

April 6

“Before the Blues,” Alonzo King’s LINES Ballet, Waterman Theatre, Tyler Hall, 7 p.m.

April 11

College Admissions Open House

April 15

Honors Convocation 3p.m.

April 15– May 13

Spring Bachelor of Fine Arts Exhibition

Oswego’s new Web site has a April 17–19 place just for you! Go to and click on Information for Parents. It will link you to April 20 pages about academics, entertainment, April 20 sending a treat to your student, campus events and much more. Sign up for SUNY Oswego news and events e-mail lists at subscribe.php

School of Business Symposium, career dicussions with Oswego alumni Quest ’05, no classes Julie Albers, with SUNY Oswego music faculty Seung hee Yang, Dan Barach and Robert Auler, Sheldon Ballroom, 7 p.m.

April 21–23 “Measure For Measure” April 30– by William Shakespeare, May1 Waterman Theatre, Tyler Hall. May 6

Last day of classes

May 9–13

Final Exams

May 13

Torchlight ceremony and dinner

May 14


Oswego Parents - Spring 2005  

Small Classes Make Big Difference, Yearbook Available, FANs Debuts, Important Dates to Remember