Monday, June 10, 2013 at 3:05 pm
Genesee Community College is pleased to announce three students have been named 2013 recipients of the SUNY Chancellor's Award for Student Excellence. Samantha Callisher, Suzanne Smith, and Samantha Vogt were recognized at an awards ceremony in Albany. Each recipient received a framed certificate and a medallion, which is traditionally worn at commencement.
The Chancellor's Award for Student Excellence was created in 1997 to recognize students who have best demonstrated, and have been recognized for the integration of academic excellence with accomplishments in the areas of leadership, athletics, community service, creative and performing arts, campus involvement or career achievement.
Each year, campus presidents establish a selection committee, which reviews exemplary students. Nominees are then forwarded to the Chancellor's Office and are subject to a second round of review. Finalists are then recommended to the Chancellor to become recipients of the award.
Callisher, 20, is studying Fashion Merchandising Management with plans to further her education after GCC, eventually earning a master's degree in Business. The Batavia native chose GCC because of its fashion program. Her career goal is to become a fashion buyer for a successful retailer. At GCC, Samantha is involved in Phi Theta Kappa Honor Society and DECA (Distributive Education Clubs of America). While compiling an impressive academic record, her community volunteerism also helped earn her the Chancellor's recognition. She gives of her time at Jackson Elementary School in Batavia, the Batavia Nursing Home and GCASA (Genesee/Orleans Council on Alcoholism and Substance Abuse).
Smith, a native of Geneva, is pursuing her second degree at GCC, this time in Communications and Media Arts. She earned an associates degree in Hospitality and Tourism in May 2009 while raising a family and working full time. Shortly after graduating, she was diagnosed with multiple myeloma, a rare form of cancer. She credits her GCC family with helping her as she went through treatment. She has been in remission for two years. Her journey through cancer led Suzanne to self-publish a book about the experience, and she has become active in organizing cancer awareness and fundraising events at GCC and the Roswell Park Cancer Institute in Buffalo, where she's also served as a cancer "coach" helping others deal with the diagnosis. Suzanne is an active member of radio club at GCC and serves as Vice President of Marketing for the Multicultural Communications Club (Toastmasters International).
Vogt, 20, is studying Fashion Merchandising Management at GCC. The West Seneca native earned the Chancellor's Award because she has excelled in all aspects of her work at GCC. A 4.0 student, she is project manager of the Fashion Program's annual Spring Fashion Show and contributes posts to the Fashion Program Blog. She served as a Resident Assistant in College Village, and is the student representative to GCC's Board of Trustees. Samantha is also president of the Business Forum Club, and active in SHAG (Student Health Awareness Group), Toastmaster's, Campus Activities Board and DECA. In addition, she works at M.A. Carr Bridal in Orchard Park and has produced five bridal fashion shows and a prom fashion show. Upon graduation, Samantha plans to continue her studies at Fashion Institute of Technology in New York City.
"The GCC Campus Community is so proud of these exemplary students," said Virginia Taylor, Vice President for Student and Enrollment Services said. "Not only are they preparing themselves for very bright and successful futures, but they're also setting a great example for other students. If you work hard, you really can achieve anything."
The three honorees were among 243 students from 63 SUNY campuses recognized for their remarkable achievements. Recipients of this year's award have an overall GPA of 3.8 and records of significant contributions to their campuses and communities.