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Herkimer in the 1990's

May 1990

Henry P. Testa receives the SUNY Chancellor’s Award for Excellence in Professional Service. Robert M. Francis receives the SUNY Chancellor’s Award for Excellence in Teaching. Valerie H. Prescott receives the SUNY Chancellor’s Award for Excellence in Librarianship.

June 1, 1990

Dr. Robert Campo, Dean of Students, retires.

Fall 1990

“Seniorversity” is established in coordination with Herkimer County Office for the Aging and Retired Senior Volunteer Program (RSVP).

January 1991

January 2, 1991
James Hayes is appointed Dean of Student Services.

February 1991

February 1, 1991
Robert Kane is appointed Dean of Administration.

February 18, 1991
The new 33,000 square foot Technology Center is dedicated, providing classroom and laboratory space for study in Criminal Justice, Radio & Television, Computer Science, Computer Assisted Design, Occupational Therapy and Travel & Tourism.

March 1991

March 23, 1991
Herkimer College men’s basketball team wins the NJCAA national championship.


The women’s field hockey team wins the NJCAA national championship.

May 1991

Barbara M. Bouchard receives the SUNY Chancellor’s Award for Excellence in Professional Service. Guy S. Corriero receives the SUNY Chancellor’s Award for Excellence in Teaching.

June 1991

Dr. Faye Lenarcic, Professor of English, is named Utica YWCA’s Woman of the Year in Education.

July 18, 1991

Herkimer College becomes the latest of New York State’s 16 rural services institutes established by the state office of Rural Affairs.

August 1991

A Freshman Seminar is initiated to help all new, full-time students to adjust successfully to the many challenges of college life.

Fall 1991

Construction of Campus Meadows student housing project is finalized.

1991 - 1992

Of New York State’s 20 community colleges, Herkimer College graduates the highest percentage of students after two years of study.

A Health Services Office staffed by a registered nurse is established.

May 1992

The men’s lacrosse program wins its third NJCAA national championship.

Michael A. Oriolo receives the SUNY Chancellor’s Award for Excellence in Professional Service. Helen A. Pannes receives the SUNY Chancellor’s Award for Excellence in Teaching.

September 1992

The off-site program, which already includes Mt. Markham and Dolgeville schools, expands to include Little Falls High School.

October 1993

The first annual Accessibility Awareness Week is held on campus.

February 1993

The FCC approves a station construction permit for the college’s new FM station, WVHC, which went ‘on the air’ in October.

Dr. Antoinette Cleveland assumes responsibility as Dean of Academic Affairs. She succeeds Dr. Faye Lenarcic who served as Interim Dean in the fall of 1992.

May 1993

The men’s lacrosse team wins its fourth NJCAA national championship in six years.

Katherine A. Schwabach receives the SUNY Chancellor’s Award for Excellence in Professional Service. Laura W. Thompson receives the SUNY Chancellor’s Award for Excellence in Teaching.

July 1993

Herkimer College hosts the first annual Independence Day celebration on campus for the community, offering music, food, and fireworks.

Summer 1993

MSA continues accreditation through 1998, accepting the College’s periodic review report.

1992 - 1993

A comprehensive campus strategic plan is developed.

Communities 2000 program is launched to assist local communities in identifying and managing solutions to specific community problems.

Ten of fourteen varsity teams qualify for post-season competition this year.

1993 - 1994

An Honors Seminar with an interdisciplinary range focusing on student’s career interests is inaugurated.

Three athletic teams earn “Academic Team of the Year” status, having the highest team grade point averages in the nation.

An employer assessment survey notes 96 percent of employers consider Herkimer College graduates equal to or better than graduates from other two-year schools.

May 1994

K. Bruce Ward receives the Alumnus of the Year award at commencement.

The men’s lacrosse team wins its fifth NJCAA national championship (third consecutive) and its eleventh straight Region III championship.

David H. Champoux receives the SUNY Chancellor’s Award for Excellence in Professional Service. William E. Pelz receives the SUNY Chancellor’s Award for Excellence in Teaching.

June 1994

The College establishes men’s and women’s varsity cross country teams to begin competing in the 1994-95 school year.

August 1994

Herkimer College offers an opportunity for students to earn a four-year degree through SUNY Empire State College via television.

1994 - 1995

Herkimer College’s graduation rate ranks highest among reference institutions and is one of the highest among all community colleges in New York State. Herkimer College also has the highest full-time faculty to student ratio of any SUNY community college.

September 1994

Herkimer College opens the Old Forge Education Center to address the educational needs of Town of Webb residents.

Three area high schools, Herkimer County BOCES, and Herkimer College connect through fiber optic lines for televised educational programs.

October 1994

The Ilion School District joins Herkimer College and other local school districts involved in the distance learning network through interactive television.

The Herkimer College Professional Association urges the College Trustees to keep pay and campus facilities above average. The faculty union has been without a contract since September 1993.

November 1994

The men’s soccer team wins its first NJCAA national championship (undefeated 25 - 0 - 0).

Herkimer College receives $83,180 in state monies to be used for equipping the distance learning classrooms at the College and the Town of Webb schools.

Herkimer County begins planning for a 911 system and the College offers space to house the 911 center.

December 1994

The College moves ahead with phase II of an energy-saving project. The preliminary phase of the project has saved 11.8 percent in energy consumption.

January 1995

Herkimer College’s “Communities 2000” program aids the local planning process by helping Herkimer business owners, property owners, local government representatives, and residents to develop a plan to revitalize North Main Street.

February 1995

The Bookstore holds a grand reopening after an expansion and makeover project.

March 1995

Lacrosse Coach Paul Wehrum is inducted into the Lacrosse Foundation Upstate New York Chapter Hall of Fame.

April/May 1995

Herkimer College establishes a website on the World Wide Web providing visitors with a broad range of information about the College.

May 1995

The men’s lacrosse team wins its sixth NJCAA national championship (fourth consecutive).

The women’s field hockey, men’s cross country, and men’s lacrosse teams are named NJCAA National Academic Teams of the Year.

Robert E. Schultz receives the SUNY Chancellor’s Award for Excellence in Professional Service.

June 1995

President Williams announces a proposed $9.1 million construction project for the college campus to address the most critical needs for additional space and facilities. The plan is the first phase of a $22 million Master Plan which will send Herkimer College competitively into the 21st century.

The College implements a pilot project of a four-day work week during summer months to realize cost savings. The initiative reduces costs by more than $35,000.

July 1995

The Herkimer County Legislature overwhelmingly approves $2.25 million for the expansion and renovation of Herkimer College. The balance of the $9.1 million project cost will come from sources outside of Herkimer County.

August 1995

The Herkimer College Foundation donates 97.5 acres to Herkimer College, at no cost to the College or the County. The donation is accepted by the Board of Trustees prior to going to the County Legislature for approval.

October 1995

The men’s soccer team defeats SUNY Delhi giving the Generals their 41st consecutive win and breaking the NJCAA record. They end their season by running that string up to 44 consecutive wins, a new national record, and they also hold the national record for consecutive shutouts.

November 1995

The men’s soccer team wins its seventh Region III title and its second consecutive NJCAA national championship (undefeated).

January 1996

A shuttle bus begins operation to transport students from the community to the College. The transportation services are provided by the Herkimer Area Resources Center.

February 1996

James Garnsey steps down as chairman of the Herkimer College Board of Trustees, and Gary Luther is named to the Board in his place. James Marsh is selected to be the next chairman.

March 1996

HCTV cable channel 10 is Herkimer County’s co-op between Herkimer College and Time Warner Cable, running a variety of programs on weekdays and providing the Herkimer County residents the means to communicate events and information at other times.

1995 - 1996

The men’s bowling, women’s bowling and men’s soccer teams are named NJCAA National Academic Teams of the Year.

April 1996

College trustees approve a proposal for a four-day work week this summer, one in a series of actions to close a $394,742 budget gap. The proposal is also approved by the County Legislature.


Herkimer College student Christopher Taylor receives the Distinguished Chapter President award (25 awarded out of 1200 chapter presidents), and Leanne Jardine receives the Robert Giles Distinguished Advisor Award at the Phi Theta Kappa International Convention, Washington D.C.

May 1996

Donald Kane Jr. receives the Alumnus of the Year award.

Three-time Pulitzer Prize-winning playwright Edward Albee, one of the most important dramatists of contemporary world theater, presents a lecture at Herkimer College’s McLaughlin College Center.

The men’s lacrosse team wins its seventh NJCAA national championship (fifth consecutive).

Debra M. Sutliff receives the SUNY Chancellor’s Award for Excellence in Professional Service. Paul Wehrum receives the SUNY Chancellor’s Award for Excellence in Teaching. James R. Cofrancesco receives the SUNY Chancellor’s Award for Excellence in Librarianship.

June 1996

Herkimer College students are selected to join over 1000 students from various schools throughout the country to participate in the Walt Disney World College Program during their summer vacation.

August 1996

Herkimer College Foundation Scholarship award winners are announced. Since its inception in 1982, the Foundation Tuition Scholarship Program has given nearly one-half million dollars to Herkimer County’s brightest high school students.

October 1996

A live debate with candidates for the 23rd Congressional District airs on the College’s television station, HCTV.

Herkimer College students conduct an economic development survey, interviewing business and industry leaders in Herkimer County on behalf of Herkimer College’s Communities 2000 program. Results are analyzed by the College, County officials, and business leaders to determine how to improve the area’s business climate and create more jobs.

November 1996

The cross country team wins the NJCAA national championship title.

A reception is held to honor Alumnus of the Year Rose Marie Battisti.

The men’s soccer team wins the NJCAA National Championship title.

January 1997

Distance learning is demonstrated in Old Forge. The network consists of 11 distance learning classrooms covering a 1500 square mile region in Central New York providing educational opportunities for students in rural communities.

April 1997

Herkimer College’s television and radio stations, HCTV and WVHC respectively, simulcast a live conversation between Herkimer College students, alumni journalists and Congressman Sherwood Boehlert. The program originates from Herkimer College’s Ormond Drake Television Studio and is produced by the college’s Advanced Video Production class.

At the Phi Theta Kappa International Convention, Dallas TX, Herkimer College’s chapter receives the Scholarship Hallmark Award (five awarded out of 1200 chapters) and the Top 100 Chapter Award.

May 1997

Frank J. Menapace receives the SUNY Chancellor’s Award for Excellence in Professional Service. Thomas M. Cuneo receives the SUNY Chancellor’s Award for Excellence in Teaching.

William J. Evans receives the Alumnus of the Year award.

July 1997

Herkimer College sponsors an Eastern European trip for area residents and students.

Herkimer College celebrates its 30th anniversary in conjunction with the fifth annual Independence Day Celebration at the College made possible through the generosity of many sponsors from throughout the community.

Herkimer College President Ronald Williams and Kamei School Owner-President Takeo Kamei sign an agreement allowing Kamei graduates to complete an associate degree at Herkimer College in one year of study in a variety of programs.

Dr. Williams is elected president of the Association of Presidents of Public Community Colleges.

September 1997

Enrollment for fall 1997 is 2467, an increase of 3.1% over fall 1996 and 666% above the College’s enrollment when it opened in fall 1967 with a total of 322 full and part-time students. International student enrollment has increased from 12 in 1996 to 48 in 1997. Students represent various countries including Ghana, Japan, Dominican Republic, Sweden, Egypt, Russia, Poland, Trinidad & Tobago, El Salvador, India, Kenya, Bosnia, Haiti, Taiwan, Belarus, Vietnam, China, United Kingdom, Honduras and Mexico.

October 1997

The Board of Trustees approves a resolution allowing Herkimer College to be a proposed site for the E-911 Building.

November 1997

Governor Pataki appoints James D. Accattato of Frankfort as a Trustee.

The Women’s Field Hockey team wins the NJCAA national championship title.

March 1998

Herkimer College’s Upsilon Epsilon Chapter of Phi Theta Kappa International Honor Society wins several awards at the New York Region Annual Convention including the Leadership Hallmark Award, four-star level in the five-star Chapter Development Program, and Most Distinguished Member - Kenneth Gates of Herkimer. Additionally, for the second consecutive year, Herkimer College’s chapter is named Most Distinguished in the New York Region.

April 1998

At the Phi Theta Kappa International Convention, Nashville, TN, Herkimer College’s chapter advisor Leanne Jardine receives the Continued Excellence Award for Advisors, and the chapter receives the Top 100 Chapter Award.

1997 - 1998

The women’s field hockey and women’s track & field teams are named NJCAA National Academic Teams of the Year.

May 1998

James I. Marsh is re-elected Chairman of the Board of Trustees.

The track & field team wins a NJCAA national championship title.

Rosalie N. Scalise receives the SUNY Chancellor’s Award for Excellence in Professional Service. Suzanne Goodrich receives the SUNY Chancellor’s Award for Excellence in Teaching.

Melissa Bennett receives the Alumnus of the Year award at commencement.

June 1998

Campus Safety adds a bicycle patrol to cover the campus, nature trail, athletic fields, and adjoining property.

July 1998

The State Education Department approves two new academic programs, jointly registered with SUNY Oneonta, allowing Herkimer College students opportunities to earn a bachelor’s degree on the Herkimer College campus.

Herkimer College and Buffalo State College cooperate in a state-of-the-art distance learning program that brings a Master’s in Adult Education program to Herkimer College through a fiber-optic network.

Herkimer College’s Director of Athletics, Sid Fox, is chosen as a representative for the National Alliance for Two-Year College Athletic Directors.

August 1998

The Board of Trustees meets in Old Forge to introduce Trustees to the College’s new office facility and familiarize them with programs being offered by the College in the northern part of Herkimer County.

September 1998

Herkimer College’s Faculty Student Association pays off a loan from Herkimer County a year early. The $292,999 loan was used to renovate and expand the Bookstore from 600 to 3,500 square feet.

October 1998

Herkimer College is reaccredited by Middle States Association of Colleges and Schools. The evaluation team completed their visit to the campus in March 1997, and included in their report the following: “The faculty, staff, and administration at Herkimer College are committed to the students that they serve and are a hard-working, dedicated group….we were most impressed with both the success of the teams engaged in athletic competitions as well as the performance of the athletes in the classroom . . .The Colleges facilities are first rate and…it seemed obvious to us that the brightness and cleanliness of the entire facility bespeaks a sense of pride by all concerned. . . We are confident that while Herkimer College can look back at its previous successes it is also capable of looking to the future with an even greater sense of excitement.”

Herkimer College receives a $20,000 grant to extend its Communities 2000 program throughout the West Central Adirondacks. The grant was made by the Herkimer and Oneida Counties Community Foundation, which said that Communities 2000 is “a true investment in the people of a region ... who are ...developing ... a clear vision…of…future.”

November 1998

Professor Thomas Lenahan is awarded the Richard L. Lewis Service Award at the Criminal Justice Educators Association of New York State.

December 1998

E-lacrosse magazine publishes a story on Lacrosse Coach Paul Wehrum. The article reviews his history as a player and coach, noting that he was the assistant coach for Team USA, winner of the 1998 World Championship, and as Herkimer College’s coach won seven national titles, 15 consecutive NJCAA Region III championships, and had three undefeated seasons to date.

February 1999

Dr. Patricia A. Pietropaolo is appointed Dean of Academic Affairs.

March 1999

WVHC-FM expands programming to 24 hours a day, 7 days/week. The station continues live student operations 8 a.m. to 11 p.m. weekdays, and has added automated hardware/software to help provide new programming in jazz and classical music for the remaining hours.

Herkimer College alumnus Rose Marie Battisti of Little Falls is among seven honorees named 1999 Outstanding Alumni by the American Association of Community Colleges (AACC).

SUNY Chancellor’s Awards for Student Excellence are given to Herkimer College students Betsy Gekonge, Jan Marie Fuhrer, and Melissa Cobb.

April 1999

While Herkimer has been offering online courses since 1997, a press conference is held to announce the establishment of the Internet Academy with six full degree programs offered entirely online. The college also begins the process to adapt all of the support services that students on campus enjoy to accommodate students studying from a distance.

Phi Theta Kappa All-New York Academic Team awards are received by Herkimer College students Jan Marie Fuhrer and Betsy Gekonge.

At the Phi Theta Kappa International Convention, Los Angeles CA, student Barbara Roberts received the George Bierkoe Distinguished Member (10 awarded out of membership exceeding 75,000), and the Herkimer College chapter received the Top 100 Chapter Award.

April 9, 1999
Herkimer College students, including lacrosse players, participate in a Habitat for Humanity house painting project in Middleville.

April 20, 1999
James I. Marsh is re-elected chairman of the Herkimer College Board of Trustees.

May 1999

The men’s and women’s swimming & diving teams are named NJCAA National Academic Teams of the Year (1998-99).

John D. Bullis receives the SUNY Chancellor’s Award for Excellence in Professional Service. Leanne W. Jardine receives the SUNY Chancellor’s Award for Excellence in Teaching.

Daniel J. Burling, Assemblyman, receives the Alumnus of the Year award.

Herkimer College launches its Internet Academy with six complete degrees online (Travel and Tourism (AAS), Liberal Arts and Sciences: General Studies (AA), Criminal Justice (AA), Criminal Justice (AAS), Business: Business Administration (AA) and Business: Business Administration (AAS).

HCTV wins an award from The Communicator Awards in the 1998 Video Competition in the Cable Television/Community Access category for an entry entitled “Adirondack Scenic Railroad Inaugural Run.” There were 3,209 entries from 47 states and other countries.

The State University of New York’s Chancellor Ryan is the keynote speaker at Herkimer College’s Commencement.

The Generals Campaign, a public-private partnership to create educational access and opportunity, is launched. The campaign will establish two endowments comprising more than $3 million to support student scholarships and instructional technology.

June 1999

The College holds ribbon cutting and dedication ceremonies for the $9.1 million expansion to the McLaughlin College Center and Physical Education Building. A “sneak peak” of the corporate training facility for local business people is co-sponsored by the Herkimer County Chamber of Commerce.

Nine people who were instrumental in the development of Herkimer College are named the first recipients of the Torchbearer Awards. A reception and ceremony take place in the College Center where plaques honoring each of the honorees are unveiled. Recipients of this prestigious honor are Bess Cristman, Virgil E. Johnson, Frederick Jurer, Harold Luther, Dr. James Anderson, Richard Jorrey, Robert McLaughlin, Anthony Cosentino, and Dr. Donald Gavagan.

July 1999

Herkimer College freezes tuition for the fourth straight year, keeping its full-time tuition ($2,250) among the lowest in state for community colleges (comparative average = $2,404).

August 1999

New degree programs in Arts Management & Art Studies are approved by the New York State Education Department.

Isabella S. Crandall, Herkimer, is appointed to the Board of Trustees.

September 1999

The Board of Trustees passes a resolution to acquire and manage previously privately-owned student housing.

West Canada Valley High School becomes the fourth high school to participate in Herkimer College’s off-site program.

The Herkimer College Foundation Generals Campaign receives a $300,000 grant from the Community Foundation of Herkimer and Oneida Counties. Over 97 percent of the College’s faculty and staff have pledged support for the campaign as well.

October 1999

The College hosts a Year 2000 (Y2K) teleconference to cover Y2K concerns regarding utilities, banking, 911, health care, emergency preparedness, legal issues and community outreach.

The College is awarded more than $80,000 in grants to provide training for employees of more than 25 Herkimer County companies. Assembly Minority Leader Fasco announced the grants and said that this is a demonstration of “ideal partnership between private industry, education, and government.”

November 1999

The Internet Academy exceeds enrollment projections, and expansion is planned for spring 2000.

Mohawk Valley Community College President Schafer serves lunch to the Herkimer College soccer team after losing a wager with Dr. Williams on the outcome of a Region III championship game between MVCC and Herkimer College (Herkimer College 4 - MVCC 1).

The Herkimer College men’s soccer team wins the NJCAA National Championship.

December 1999

The Telecommunicator Training program for Emergency 911 centers is established.