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Colgate University celebrates 194th commencement

May 18, 2015
Graduation cap from Commencement 2015 reading "Fortune favors the bold."

Photo by Andrew Daddio

During commencement exercises yesterday, Colgate University extended congratulations to the Class of 2015, family members cheered, and seniors enjoyed one final class together as undergraduates.

The lesson came in three parts. First, President Jeffrey Herbst reflected on America’s cultural obsession with being busy and asked students to reconsider how they answer the simple question, “How are you?”

“When asked how you are, never say ‘busy,’ Herbst said. “Rather than expressing to others the velocity at which you are doing things, why not discuss what you are doing?”

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Baccalaureate speaker tells graduates: “You’re not ducking for the camera”

May 18, 2015
Rev. Gay Clark Jennings. Photo by Gerard Gaskin

Rev. Gay Clark Jennings ’74 delivered Saturday’s baccalaureate address. Photo by Gerard Gaskin

When Rev. Gay Clark Jennings ’74 was a student in Colgate’s first graduating class of women, she was part of historic change. A varsity volleyball player, she pressed the university’s president for equal medical benefits for female athletes under Title IX; investigated grocery store price gouging in Madison County’s poorest areas; and marched against the war in Vietnam. Read more

Presidents’ Club members feel as good as gold on 50th anniversary

May 14, 2015
An overhead shot of the 50th anniversary of the Presidents' Club

The 50th Anniversary of the Presidents’ Club. (Photo by Lorenzo Ciniglio.)

When Colgate’s Presidents’ Club was founded, the university’s endowment was approximately $12 million, and the giving society had 93 members whose generosity would help modernize the university. Fifty years later, the coffer holds more than 50 times that amount, and there are 30 times more members.

Today the Presidents’ Club is much more than a giving society. It’s a collection of generous alumni, families, and friends — representing all ages, career fields, and giving capacities — who are dedicated to advancing the university. The club creates educational and career opportunities for students on campus and around the world. For example, it partners with Colgate’s Center for Career Services to bring new life to campus events such as Homecoming. Read more

Colgate ranks #2 in the nation in new survey of college outcomes and value

April 29, 2015
Colgate alumni give students an important leg up in the business world.

Colgate alumni give students an important leg up in the business world.

Behind only California Institute of Technology and ahead of MIT, Stanford, Harvard, Princeton, Yale and many others, Colgate today was ranked second-highest among four-year schools for “value-added” with respect to mid-career earnings.

A new report from the Brookings Metropolitan Policy Program, titled Beyond College Rankings, a Value-Added Approach to Assessing Two- and Four-Year Schools, is the first to study a broad array of colleges on economic outcomes for graduates, using a blend of government and private data sources, including Linkedin and PayScale.

It also factors in seven quality metrics: Curriculum value, percent graduating in a STEM field, alumni skills, graduation rate, retention rate, aid per student, and instructional staff.

Read here for a summary of the report and the list of  the “10 universities that will increase your career earnings the most.”

According to Inside Higher Education, “Brookings characterizes the unobservable reasons why an institution might provide a large value-added boost to its graduates as ‘x factors,’ and attributes 59 percent of Colgate’s value added to such unobserved factors.”

Jonathan Rothwell, lead author and a fellow at Brookings, said, “It’s not the majors that are driving their student success, and it’s not the skills they list on résumés. It may be they have access to great teachers; it may be that their alumni networks are strong.”

According to Brookings, the survey improves on conventional rankings in several ways. The survey includes a much larger number of schools; it focuses on factors that best predict measurable economic outcomes; and it attempts to isolate the effect colleges themselves have on those outcomes, above and beyond what students’ backgrounds would predict.

“This report is serious and comprehensive,” said President Jeffrey Herbst. “The focus on outcomes makes it superior to other rankings. It measures salaries, which is important but not, of course, the whole story. The report articulates the power of our Colgate University professional networks .”

The timing of the new survey from Brookings is attracting widespread media attention, as it comes as many families are in the final throes of weighing college admission and aid offers.

So far, Colgate has been mentioned by Inside Higher EducationNational JournalCNN Money, cbs.com, National Journal, Fusion, and Huffington Post.

Geology professor Karen Harpp wins 2015 Balmuth Award

April 17, 2015
Geology professor Karen Harpp stands next to Provost Douglas Hicks

Geology professor Karen Harpp with Provost and Dean of the Faculty Douglas Hicks (Photo by Alice Virden-Speer)

Last week, Associate Professor of Geology and Peace and Conflict Studies Karen Harpp added a 13th line to her list of teaching accolades when she received the 2015 Jerome Balmuth Award for Teaching and Student Engagement.

“I don’t think there’s anyone in any room who has the energy that Karen Harpp has or the passion she brings to teaching,” Provost and Dean of the Faculty Douglas Hicks told guests who gathered at the Colgate Inn to celebrate the occasion.

Harpp is the sixth faculty member to win the award, which was created through a gift from Mark Siegel ’73.

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Colgate community bids loving farewell to Adam and Eve

April 15, 2015
Swan beside Taylor Lake

Photo by Andrew Daddio

Always known as Adam and Eve, the mute swans that have graced Taylor Lake since 1929 will no longer make their home at Colgate University. The announcement came after the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation (DEC) published new draft regulations governing their maintenance and care.

“Adam and Eve have been a memorable part of the Colgate landscape for generations of students, alumni, and parents,” said Brian Hutzley, vice president for finance and administration. “They will be missed.”

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All-star Entrepreneur Weekend panel encourages Colgate students to think big

April 10, 2015
Entrepreneur Weekend panel onstage in Cotterell Court

Colgate’s Entrepreneur Weekend 2015 all-star panel (Photo by Andrew Daddio)

Colgate’s entrepreneurial spirit soared tonight as the university welcomed five leading business builders to campus for Entrepreneur Weekend 2015.

The panel included Jessica Alba, founder of The Honest Company; Neil Blumenthal, co-founder and co-CEO of Warby Parker; Greg Coleman, president of Buzzfeed; serial entrepreneur and entertainer MC Hammer; and Rent the Runway co-founder and CEO Jennifer Hyman — all interviewed by Colgate trustee and Chegg! CEO Dan Rosensweig P’15’17.

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Aviation Club reaches new heights with flight simulator

April 9, 2015
Colin Shipley ’15 (right) takes the controls of the new Redbird Jay flight simulator just purchased by the Aviation Club. Overseeing his flight is the club co-president, Aaron Simon ’15. Photo by Andrew Daddio

Colin Shipley ’15 (right) takes the controls of the new Redbird Jay flight simulator just purchased by the Aviation Club. Overseeing his flight is the club’s vice president, Aaron Simon ’15. Photo by Andrew Daddio

Navigating the skies of Dubai, from takeoff to landing, is no easy task. But members of Colgate’s Aviation Club have been getting some practice thanks to a new flight simulator that lets users fly any plane in any weather condition in any city in the world.

The new system is kept in room 446 in Case-Geyer Library and is accessible to members of the community upon request to the Aviation Club. Read more

Alumni Council Entrepreneur of the Year award winners

April 2, 2015

During Entrepreneur Weekend, the Colgate University Alumni Council will give out this year’s Entrepreneur of the Year award to Ello Chief Operating Officer Pete Sheinbaum ’92 and Patagonia Sur Chief Executive Officer Warren Adams ’88.

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Whoopi Goldberg offers life lessons and laughs for Colgate community

March 30, 2015
Whoopi Goldberg and Lee Woodruff ’82, P’13, H’07

Whoopi Goldberg and trustee Lee Woodruff ’82, P’13, H’07 on stage in Cotterell Court on March 27. (Photo by Andrew Daddio)

Last Friday, entertainer Whoopi Goldberg appeared before 2,500 Colgate community members in Cotterell Court. Her performance — a mix of comedy and grandmotherly advice — was a testament to the skills of a woman who has won countless awards for her work on screen, on stage, and in print.

For an hour, she held her audience’s attention, first offering a stand-up routine, then engaging in a Q&A session with trustee Lee Woodruff ’82, P’13, H’07. Afterward, she met with a small group of students in the Hurwitz Admission Center to discuss her life and issues of campus climate.

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Professional network presents Common Good Week

March 21, 2015

Following on the heels of the wildly popular Colgate Day of Impact, Colgate’s first Common Good Week for students takes place March 24–27. The week, sponsored by the Common Good Professional Network, will consist of seminars and speakers, including Colgate alumni who have nonprofit and government-sector experience.

The Common Good Network, one of eight Colgate Professional Networks, connects students, alumni, and parents who are interested in or work for nonprofit organizations, government agencies, or other social good enterprises. It builds crucial professional on-ramps for undergraduates — many of whom already volunteer through the Max A. Shacknai Center for Outreach, Volunteerism, and Education (COVE).

COVE director Krista Saleet and career services adviser Kelly Brant developed Common Good Week to educate students on career options within the field.

The week’s events will include:

Tuesday: Discussion of what careers are available in the field of Common Good. 4:15 p.m., 27 Persson

Wednesday: Samantha Darche ’01, chief of staff and legislative counsel for New York State Assemblywoman Aravella Simotas, will lead a discussion about her experiences working in the government sector. 12:15 p.m., 109 Lathrop

Thursday: Sarah Lange ’87, principal and founder of New Era (an organization that helps nonprofits of all types integrate best practices in the areas of fund development, marketing and communications, board development, strategic planning, and leadership), will discuss her experiences as a consultant for nonprofits. 12:15 p.m., 109 Lathrop

Friday: Corrine Ribble ’97, principal of Riverview Strategies, leads the Nonprofit Leadership Board Workshop. 2:00–4:00 p.m., 107 Lathrop

For more information on the Common Good Network and other Colgate Professional Networks, visit colgate.edu/networks.

Colgate community Hackathon in New York City supports student’s nonprofit venture

March 20, 2015
(Left to right) Thought Into Action founder Andy Greenfield ’74, P’12, digital technology network volunteer Jeff O'Connell ’94,  Amanda Brown ’15, and Thought Into Action Executive Director Wills Hapworth ’07 during Colgate's Hackathon on Saturday, March 14

(Left to right) Thought Into Action founder Andy Greenfield ’74, P’12, digital technology network volunteer Jeff O’Connell ’94, Amanda Brown ’15, and Thought Into Action Executive Director Wills Hapworth ’07 during Colgate’s Hackathon on Saturday, March 14

On a rainy Saturday in New York City, about 40 Colgate alumni and students gathered to spend eight hours together for Colgate’s first-ever off-campus Hackathon, powered by the Digital Media and Technology Professional Network, the Entrepreneur Network, and the Common Good Network. The hackathon was one of many Colgate Day of Impact events held around the country.

Hosted by Jeff O’Connell ’94 at his downtown Maker Studios offices, the Colgate Hackathon involved engineers, computer coders, and technicians who helped Amanda Brown ’15 enhance the web presence of her nonprofit venture, Children & Youth First. Maker Studios, with its casual, loft-style space and multiple conference rooms, provided the perfect backdrop for the Hackathon.

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Professor Eddie Watkins publishes paper in journal with current student, alumnus

March 17, 2015
Researchers hold the fern they discovered

Rehman Momin ’15, Professor Eddie Watkins, Caridad Zúñiga Calvo, and Weston Testo ’12 (left to right) holding the fern named after Caridad. (Photo by Jarmilla Pitterman)

Colgate professor Eddie Watkins published a new paper in the journal Brittonia with Rehman Momin ’15, Wes Testo ’12 and Jarmilla Pitterman, a professor at UC Santa Cruz. Brittonia is a specialized botanical journal managed by the New York Botanical Garden. The article outlines the discovery of a rare new hybrid fern in Costa Rica. Read more

Superstar entrepreneur panel to headline Colgate’s 4th annual Entrepreneur Weekend, April 10–11

March 13, 2015


Colgate University will kick off Entrepreneur Weekend 2015 on Friday, April 10, with a panel conversation featuring five all-star entrepreneurs: Jessica Alba, founder of The Honest Company; Neil Blumenthal, co-founder and CEO of Warby Parker; Greg Coleman, president of Buzzfeed; serial entrepreneur and entertainer MC Hammer; and Rent the Runway co-founder and CEO Jennifer Hyman.

Panelists will launch the university’s annual celebration of entrepreneurial spirit, offering insights that they have gathered as they have built businesses across an array of industries. Colgate trustee and Chegg! CEO Dan Rosensweig P’15’17 will moderate the discussion.

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Show — and share — your pride on Colgate Day

February 12, 2015

Fun fact: If you get a Colgate Day in February, you get another in March, too!

The first Colgate Day of 2015 arrives this Friday, immediately followed by Valentine’s Day on Saturday. What could be better than infusing tradition with romance on this snowy weekend? (Share your photos via social media: #colgateday #colgatelove)
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Colgate’s professional networks give students a sampling of careers in LA, NYC

February 10, 2015
Students on a FOX television set in L.A.

Palm trees in New York City: entertainment group students tour a Fox Television set in LA.

A group of ten students representing the Colgate Entertainment Group explored the worlds of film and television on January 14 and 15 in Los Angeles, while a second group of students learned more about the real estate field in New York City.

Read student accounts of the two trips below.

During the LA immersion trip, alumni explained their paths to their current positions — grads like Stephen Brown ’81, EVP of programming and development at 20th Century Fox Television;  Steven Brookman ’81, head of Motion Picture Business Affairs at the Creative Arts Agency; Eugene Young ’81, president of Ryan Seacrest Productions; and Amanda Brown ’01, vice president of production at Paramount Pictures.

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Colgate network gets Jimmy DeCicco ’15 a super spot working at Super Bowl XLIX

February 2, 2015

Jimmy DeCicco ’15 had one of the best seats in the house for Super Bowl XLIX.

Thanks to a Colgate connection, DeCicco worked as an NBC Sports production assistant for the game that will long be remembered for its wild finish that resulted in a 28-24 win by the New England Patriots over the Seattle Seahawks.

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Colgate to sell five acres to Good Nature Farm Brewery to benefit local economy, tourism

January 28, 2015

At its January 25 meeting, the Colgate Board of Trustees approved the sale of five acres of land to Hamilton’s Good Nature Farm Brewery & Tap Room (GNB), owned by Carrie Blackmore ’08 and husband Matt Whalen. GNB will construct new facilities on the site, which is located on Route 12B and is part of a 25-acre parcel known as the Snyder property. Colgate has owned the property since 2012.

After examining GNB’s plans and seeing the significant financial support from the Central New York Regional Economic Development Council, Board Chair Denis Cronin said the trustees believed the transaction and the resulting project will benefit members of the community, the local economy, and the university.

Good Nature Brewery Read more

Anna Kosa ’14 brings international relations background to UN job in Nepal

January 27, 2015
Anna Kosa '14

Anna Kosa ’14 is working for the United Nations in Kathmandu, Nepal.

Anna Kosa ’14, an international relations major, is again using her Colgate education as a springboard for travel and career opportunities. She is currently working for the United Nations Development Program in Kathmandu, Nepal. You can read about her newest adventure on her blog.
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Howard Fineman ’70, H’11 takes on global editorial role at Huffington Post

January 16, 2015

Howard Fineman ’70, H’11, speaks at Commencement in 2011. (Photo by Andrew M. Daddio)

Howard Fineman ’70, H’11, one of Colgate’s most well-known alumni in the media field, has been appointed global editorial director at the Huffington Post. Fineman, who was previously an editorial director at the company, will now be in charge of supervising U.S. news coverage as well 13 international editions and others that will come online in the future.  Read more

Denise Battles ’85 tapped to lead SUNY Geneseo

January 13, 2015
Colgate Alumna Denise A. Battles has been selected to lead SUNY Geneseo

Denise A. Battles ’85 has been selected to lead SUNY Geneseo.

A Colgate University alumna with more than 25 years of experience in higher education, Denise A. Battles ’85, will become the new leader of SUNY Geneseo starting in July, the State University of New York Board of Trustees announced today.

Battles, a Central Square, N.Y., native, is currently provost and vice chancellor for academic affairs at the University of North Carolina Wilmington, according to a news release. Battles earned her bachelor’s degree in geology at Colgate, and a doctorate in geology from the University of California.

Read the full announcement here.


Sian-Pierre Regis ’06: In finding a career path, it’s all about how much you hustle

January 2, 2015

As students begin internship and career searches, alumni serve as key resources to teaching the tips and tricks of their own professional success. Back on campus to offer his insights, Sian-Pierre Regis ’06 spoke about how to build a personal brand at the most recent installment of the Thought into Action Summit Series.

Regis is founder and editor-in-chief of Swagger New York, an online cultural magazine for millennials that has developed a huge following. He also is a correspondent for CNN Headline News, appearing on the show weekly. Read more

Colgate University photographer Andy Daddio picks his top 10 images of 2014

December 23, 2014

(Editor’s Note: This post is by Andy Daddio, Colgate’s photographic services coordinator.)

Here are ten images from 2014 that stood out when reviewing what I had shot this past calendar year. I wouldn’t say this is a definitive list of my absolute best of 2014, as the picks would probably change if I were to do it on another day, and a third review on yet another day would probably produce a third set of images. But these are some photos that stood out for me, along with info about the shoot, some anecdotes, and geeky technical photography details.

Best wishes for the new year! Read more

Colgate Thirteen to perform at Radio City Christmas Spectacular

November 30, 2014
Colgate Thirteen

The Colgate Thirteen perform at Memorial Chapel. (Photo by Janna Minehart)

Christmas is coming early this year for Colgate Thirteen fans.

The a cappella crew is pleased to announce that it will kick off the 2014 Radio City Christmas Spectacular in New York City on Friday, December 12, taking the stage at 9:10 p.m. — just before the curtain rises on the Rockettes at 9:30 p.m.

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Athletics director Victoria Chun ’91 MA ’94 writes op-ed on head injuries in sports

November 26, 2014
President Jeffrey Herbst speaks to members of the football team.

President Jeffrey Herbst (center) speaks to members of the Colgate football team. At right is head coach Dan Hunt.

Colgate recently released a practice protocol designed to limit head injuries in sports.

Expanding on the idea, athletics director Victoria Chun ’91 MA ’94 wrote an op-ed called “There Is No Neat Solution For Head Injuries in Sport” for the Huffington Post. Read more